Staff Biographies

Christine Mullen Kreamer

Acting Director, National Museum of African Art

April 1, 2017

Christine Mullen Kreamer is the acting director of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African Art. Previously, she was deputy director and chief curator at the museum.

Her numerous exhibitions and publications explore art and ritual, gender, African systems of knowledge and museum practice, and they bridge the disciplines of art history, anthropology and museum studies. In addition to research in Togo and South Africa, she has worked on museum exhibitions and training projects in Ghana and Vietnam.

Kreamer received her doctorate from Indiana University in 1986 and specializes in African art history, knowledge systems and museum anthropology.

In addition to articles and essays on traditional and contemporary African arts and museum practice, her more recent exhibitions and co-authored publications include “Conversations: African and African American Artwork in Dialogue” (2014), “African Cosmos: Stellar Arts” (2012), “Lines, Marks, and Drawings: Through the Lens of Roger Ballen” (2013), “Inscribing Meaning: Writing and Graphic Systems in African Art” (2007) and “African Vision: The Walt Disney-Tishman African Art Collection” (2007). She is also a contributing author for an essay on connoisseurship in the 2014 edited volume Visions from the Forest: The Art of Liberia and Sierra Leone and two essays in the 2011 edited volume Representing Africa in American Art Museums (University of Washington Press, 2011).

Kreamer also was acting director from January 2009 until March 2009, when Johnnetta Cole was named director. Cole retired March 31 and now holds the title director emeritus.

Kreamer began her Smithsonian career in the late 1980s as the content coordinator for the National Museum of Natural History’s “African Voices” exhibition. In April 2000, she joined the staff of the National Museum of African Art as curator.

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