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October 30, 2014

New Hirshhorn Museum Chief Plans Bolder Programming

In her first interview since taking office last month as director of the Smithsonian's Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Melissa Chiu tells The New York Times she hopes to make the contemporary-art museum more of a showcase for experimental and international works. Ms. Chiu, an Australian who formerly led the Asia Society, replaced Richard Koshalek, who resigned last year amid the collapse of his signature project to build a $15.5-million inflatable structure in the museum's inner courtyard.

Ms. Chiu outlined plans to give the Washington institution, known for its expansive collection of American and European modern art, a more broadly global and tech-savvy outlook. Her first exhibition, to open in May, will feature photographer and video artist Shirin Neshat, whose focus is modern Iranian history. "The whole art world ecology has changed,” Ms. Chiu said. "The art world has become truly transnational."