For Immediate Release

Contact: Amy Mercer
Marketing and Communications Manager
843-722-2706 ext. 38


Todd Smith Resigns as Executive Director of the Gibbes Museum of Art

(Charleston, SC) –Today, Todd Smith announced he is stepping down as executive director of the Gibbes Museum of Art effective April 1. He will remain with the museum as director of special projects through June 30, 2008. The museum will begin a search for a new executive director immediately and will appoint an interim director to assist during the transition.

Smith came to the Gibbes from the Knoxville Museum of Art in March 2006. While at the Gibbes, Smith has been credited with directing the museum through its reaccreditation from the American Association of Museums, instilling a financial discipline to the museum’s operation, launching a new branding and identity campaign, developing an enhanced Web presence for the museum, and moving contemporary art into a more prominent role within the institution.

Under Smith, the Gibbes achieved the designation as the top ranked arts agency in the state by the South Carolina Arts Commission in its triennial review of major cultural organizations. This honor resulted from a thorough review of the museum and its programs and operations.

Tom White, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Carolina Art Association (the governing body for the Gibbes), stated “Smith has brought professionalism and the highest level of integrity to the operations of the Gibbes. Smith’s combination of administrative acumen and reputation as a top-notch historian of American art has been of great value to the museum. He has overseen tremendous change at the organization and has positioned us to continue our growth in the 21st century.”

Smith stated “he was proud that the museum has engaged new audiences with art of our time, including the establishment of the Factor Prize and the purchase of the first work of video art in the state. He is also extremely pleased with how the museum has refocused on its core mission and has placed it at the center of what it does, from its new graphic identity to the reinstallation of the permanent collection.”

In the role of director of special projects, Smith will oversee the completion of several important projects for the museum. These will include the choosing of the winner of the Elizabeth and Mallory Factor Prize for Southern Art, the naming of a new deputy director for institutional advancement, completing work on key fundraising initiatives and continuing work on an upcoming exhibition of work by Lowcountry artist, Washington Allston (1779-1853) to be presented at the Gibbes in 2010.

Under Smith the number of households which are members of the museum has grown by 7.5%; admission revenues has increased by 3.7% and support by the museum’s upper level donors has increased by 6.2%.

Established as the Carolina Art Association in 1858, the Gibbes Museum of Art opened its doors to the public in 1905. 

Located in Charleston’s historic district, the Gibbes houses a premier collection of over 10,000 works of fine art, principally American works with a Charleston or Southern connection and presents special exhibitions annually. In addition, the museum offers an extensive complement of public programming and educational outreach initiatives.

As the aesthetic heart of the Lowcountry, the Gibbes serves the community by stimulating creative expression, increasing economic vitality through tourism, and improving the region’s superb quality of life.

135 Meeting Street * Charleston, SC * 29401