Trevor Smith, Associate Director – Multisensory Experience, Curator of the Present Tense
Trevor Smith leads PEM's Present Tense initiative (PTI), which celebrates the central role that creative expression plays in shaping our world today. The PTI explores ways in which creativity and cultural change emerge at the intersections of cultures, disciplines, or technologies. In his capacity as Associate Director of Multisensory Experience, Smith aligns the museum’s curatorial activities with its neuroscience and visual literacy initiatives to create experiences that activate the senses and resonate with our communities.
At PEM, Smith has curated exhibitions of internationally-acclaimed contemporary artists, including Nick Cave, Céleste Boursier-Mougenot, Susan Philipsz, Candice Breitz and Charles Sandison. He organized the acclaimed exhibitions, Strandbeest: The Dream Machines of Theo Jansen and PlayTime, an exploration of the changing role of play in contemporary culture. Smith curated Kimsooja: Archive of Mind, Susan Philipsz: If I With You Would Go, and Carlos Garaicoa: Partitura. He was also the co-curator of Alexis Rockman: Shipwrecks and The Great Animal Orchestra: Bernie Krause and United Visual Artists, as well as Down to the Bone: Edward Koren and Stephen Gorman, which was on view through February 2023. Smith is also the curator of Shelagh Keeley: Drawn to Place, which opened in November 2022, and Gu Wenda: United Nations opening April 1, 2023.
Prior to joining PEM in 2008, Smith was Curator in Residence at the Center for Curatorial Studies, Bard College and Curator at the New Museum of Contemporary Art in New York City. Smith was previously based in Australia where he worked for the Biennale of Sydney, served as Director of the Canberra Contemporary Art Space and was Curator of Contemporary Art at the Art Gallery of Western Australia. He was also co-Curator of the 2011 Singapore Biennial. Smith has produced over 70 exhibitions and has published widely in exhibition catalogues and journals worldwide.
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