Manuel Borja-Villel to Receive Audrey Irmas Award for Curatorial Excellence

Accompanied by a $25,000 prize, the award, which first launched in 1998, honors outstanding curatorial achievements.

By: Nov. 29, 2023
Manuel Borja-Villel to Receive Audrey Irmas Award for Curatorial Excellence

The Center for Curatorial Studies, Bard College (CCS Bard) has announced internationally renowned art historian and curator Manuel Borja-Villel as the 2024 recipient of the Audrey Irmas Award for Curatorial Excellence. Accompanied by a $25,000 prize, the award, which first launched in 1998, honors outstanding curatorial achievements that have brought innovative thinking, bold vision, and dedicated service to advancing the field of exhibition-making today.

In addition to the 2024 Audrey Irmas Award for Curatorial Excellence, CCS Bard announces the inaugural Scott Lorinsky Alumni Award recognizing an outstanding graduate for sustained innovation and engagement in exhibition making, public education, research, and a commitment to the field. CCS Bard Alum Carla Acevedo-Yates (2014) will be the first recipient to receive the newly created award, which comes with a $10,000 prize.

Borja-Villel and Acevedo-Yates will both be honored at CCS Bard’s spring 2024 gala celebration and dinner on April 8, 2024. The event, which is chaired by the CCS Bard Board of Governors, will be held in New York City at The Lighthouse at Pier 61.

“Manuel Borja-Villel embodies the critical role of curators today in challenging accepted modes of practice to facilitate meaningful and responsive discourse on visual culture, past and present,” said Tom Eccles, Executive Director of the Center for Curatorial Studies, Bard College. “As we celebrate Manuel’s achievements following his departure as the transformational director of Museo Reina Sofia, we also recognize the outstanding contributions of Carla Acevedo-Yates, whose curatorial career has brought visibility to overlooked artists across the Americas. We thank Scott Lorinsky for his generosity in establishing an award that celebrates individuals from our incredible network of CCS Bard alumni whose impact is being felt throughout the field.” 

“Needless to say, I am very honored and grateful. I am honored because I have collaborated on different occasions with many of the past awardees and I have always respected and admired their work,” said Borja-Villel. “To be part of this group of people is a joy. I am grateful because the award is in recognition of a trajectory. Mine has developed in museums, that is, my work has always been done together with others. My award is also theirs."

“I’m delighted to recognize the exceptional achievements of CCS Bard graduates with the Scott Lorinsky Alumni Award, and to celebrate the outstanding accomplishments by Carla Acevedo-Yates as its initial recipient,” said CCS Board Member Scott Lorinsky. “Carla is an innovative leader in the curatorial field with an impeccable commitment to centering artistic practices by artists from the Global South, with a focus on Caribbean, Latin American and Latinx artists.”

“I am honored to be recognized by my peers as the inaugural recipient of the Scott Lorinsky Alumni Award at CCS Bard, an institution that has been deeply influential in how I approach curatorial practice and working with artists,” said Acevedo-Yates. “CCS was such a meaningful experience in so many ways. Apart from understanding exhibition-making as an intellectually driven spatial practice, I also gained a generous community of colleagues that have accompanied me through the years.”