Gaëtane Verna has been appointed to the position of Director of The Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery. Verna has been the Executive Director and Chief Curator of the Musée d’art de Joliette (MAJ) in Lanaudière, Québec since 2006.
GaëtaneVerna was chosen to lead the future of The Power Plant after an extensive international search launched by the gallery’s Board of Directors, who determined her best to direct the gallery to a new level of achievement and recognition. She succeeds Gregory Burke, who left the organization at the end of May 2011, after six years in the role. Verna began her new position at Canada’s leading non-collecting contemporary art gallery on 5 March, 2012.
Gaëtane Verna was formally Executive Director and Chief Curator of the MAJ in Lanaudière, Quebec. From 1998 to 2006, she was the curator of the Forman Art Gallery of Bishop’s University, while also teaching in the Art History department of both Bishop’s University and the Université du Québec à Montréal. In her more than fifteen-year career, she has gained invaluable experience in curating, presenting and organizing exhibitions by emerging, mid-career and established Canadian and international artists such as Vasco Araújo, Alfredo Jaar, Luis Jacob, Kimsooja, François Lacasse, Marie-Josée Laframboise, Fabienne Lasserre, Yam Lau, Oswaldo Maciá, Ed Pien, Penelope Stewart, Gabor Szilasi, Javier Tellez, Denyse Thomasos, Bill Viola, and YOUNG HAE CHANG HEAVY INDUSTRIES, among others.
Under Verna’s leadership, the Musée d’art de Joliette made major developments in its institutional maturity. Verna secured $10 million dollars for a capital expansion and renovation project, strategically expanded the permanent collection and increased programming offerings that answered the museum’s call for increased engagement with and accessibility for a larger, more diverse audience base.
Verna holds a DEA and a Master’s degree from the Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne as well as an International Diploma in Heritage Administration and Conservation from the Institut National du Patrimoine in Paris, France. She has an extensive list of publications to her name, including the soon-to-be-launched (April 2012) catalogue of the collection of the Musée d’art de Joliette. She has made contributions to multiple collaborative projects with institutions such as the National Gallery of Canada, the Walter Phillips Gallery, the Southern Alberta Art Gallery, the Textile Museum of Canada, the Agnes Etherington Art Centre, Mount Saint Vincent University Art Gallery and Centre A, Vancouver International Centre for Contemporary Asian Art.
Active in the arts community in a local, national and international capacity, Verna has served as a member of the curatorial panel for the Sobey Art Award (2011); Chair of the Gérard-Morisset Award for the Ministry of Culture, Québec (2011); a member of the Special Advisory Committee on museums and public galleries for the Canada Council for the Arts (2008); and a Board member and Chair of the Visual Arts Committee for Montréal Arts Council (2006).
Shanitha Kachan, President of the Board of Directors of The Power Plant says: “Gaëtane Verna comes to Toronto with an outstanding set of achievements, exemplifying her competence in all capacities of museum operations. As a successful fundraiser, a notable curator and proven strategic leader, she will steer The Power Plant in a new direction at an exciting time in its twenty-five year history. With enthusiasm and excitement, we look forward to a new day at the gallery with Gaëtane at the helm.”
The Power Plant
231 Queens Quay West
M5J 2G8 Canada