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France Honors Gary Tinterow with the Insignia of Officer of the Order of Arts and Letters

Gary Tinterow, newly appointed director of the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. (photo by F. Carter Smith)

Gary Tinterow, newly appointed director of the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. (photo by F. Carter Smith)

Antonin Baudry, Cultural Counselor of the French Embassy, will confer the insignia of Officer of the Order of Arts and Letters on Gary Tinterow on January 23, 2012.

Gary Tinterow, a distinguished curator at The Metropolitan Museum of Art for nearly three decades, was recently appointed director of the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston.

Currently the Engelhard Chairman of Nineteenth-Century, Modern and Contemporary Art at the Metropolitan, Mr. Tinterow began working at the Metropolitan in 1983. During his tenure, he has organized some of the Museum’s most critically acclaimed and popular exhibitions, including Portraits by Ingres: Image of an Epoch (1999), Manet/Velazquez: The French Taste for Spanish Painting (2003), and Picasso in the Metropolitan Museum of Art (2010). He was awarded “Best Exhibition Prize” from the International Association of Art Critics (AICA) for Origins of Impressionism and The Private Collection of Edgar Degas in 1995 and 1997, respectively.

The Metropolitan’s exceptional collection of nineteenth-century paintings has been shaped greatly by significant acquisitions of works by Cézanne, Degas, Delacroix, Gericault, Monet, and Van Gogh under Mr. Tinterow. He also oversaw two major renovations and reinstallations of the Nineteenth-Century European Painting and Sculpture galleries, one completed in 1993 and the other in 2007.

He has collaborated with colleagues at many national and international museums including Musée du Louvre, Musée d’Orsay, Centre Georges Pompidou, The Courtauld Gallery, London, The National Gallery, London, Museo Nacional del Prado, The Art Institute of Chicago, and the National Gallery of Art, Washington.

The Ordre des Arts et des Lettres (Order of Arts and Letters) was created in 1957 to recognize eminent artists and writers, as well as individuals who have contributed to furthering the arts in France and throughout the world. The Order is given out twice annually to only a few hundred people worldwide. Americans who have received the award include Paul Auster, Ornette Coleman, Agnes Gund, Marilyn Horne, Jim Jarmusch,Richard Meier, Robert Paxton, Robert Redford, Meryl Streep, and Uma Thurman.

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