Danyelle Means (Oglala Lakota) named interim director Museum of Indian Arts & Culture in Santa Fe
Danyelle Means (Oglala Lakota) brings years of experience with non-profit, academic, and contemporary Native art sectors to role of interim director of Museum of Indian Arts & Culture in Santa Fe
New Mexico Department of Cultural Affairs (NMDCA) announced today that Danyelle Means (Oglala Lakota) will serve as interim director of Museum of Indian Arts & Culture (MIAC) in Santa Fe, NM. Means, whose many years of experience and wide network in the non-profit, academic, and contemporary Native art sectors, will work closely with MIAC Deputy Director Elisabeth Stone to continue delivering meaningful services and programs to the public.
“Danyelle Means’ history and experience, locally at SWAIA, CCA, and IAIA, and nationally with the National Museum of the American Indian, will maintain stability and move Museum of Indian Arts & Culture forward in the interim,” said Debra Garcia y Griego, New Mexico Department of Cultural Affairs Cabinet Secretary. “The museum’s commitment to education and outreach programs and its close work with Indigenous communities will benefit greatly from Danyelle’s tremendous skills.”
Previously, Means worked for the First Peoples Fund (in association with the National Opinion Research Center), Southwestern Association for Indian Arts, Inc., and was the first person of Indigenous heritage to lead Center for Contemporary Arts. She also served as the Director of Advancement at the Institute of American Indian Arts and the Executive Director of the Institute of American Indian Arts Foundation.
Means also has a wide range of museum experience, including at the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of the American Indian (NMAI). There, she participated in the development of several of the inaugural exhibitions for the Heye Center in New York and oversaw the development of To Honor and Comfort: Native Quilting Traditions. As an independent museum consultant, she co-curated the 2019-2020 CUNY-QCC exhibition: Survivance and Sovereignty on Turtle Island at the Kupferberg Holocaust Center. She is on the board of the Joan Mitchell Foundation, 516 Arts, and is an Advisory Board Member for the Gallery and Museum Studies Program at Queensborough CC-CUNY. She holds a Master of Arts in Museum Studies from Marist College/Instituto Lorenzo de’ Medici, Florence, Italy (ABT), and a Bachelor of Arts in Anthropology and French from University of South Dakota.
“I am grateful for this incredible opportunity to serve as the Interim Director of Museum of Indian Arts & Culture,” said Means. “While there, I look forward to working with Tribal partners and in support of the statewide vision of the New Mexico Department of Cultural Affairs.”