Dr. Melissa Chiu is Director of the Asia Society Museum in New York and Vice President of the Society’s Global Arts Programming. She was appointed director in 2004 after serving for three years as the Museum’s first curator of contemporary Asian and Asian American art. As a leading authority on Asian contemporary art, she has initiated a number of major initiatives at the Asia Society Museum, including the launch of a contemporary art collection to complement the museum’s outstanding Rockefeller Collection of traditional Asian art.
Chiu, who is a frequent lecturer and commentator in the news media, is a visiting professor at the CUNY Graduate School. She has spoken at numerous American universities, including Harvard University. She was a Getty Research Fellow (2003-2004) and has served on grant and policy advisory committees for: the New York State Council on the Arts, the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, and the Massachusetts Cultural Council.
Chiu is a member of the Academic Advisory Board, Asia Art Archives, Hong Kong; Advisory Board, Yishu: Journal of Contemporary Chinese Art, Vancouver; Advisor for Art 21, an art television series broadcast on PBS; Board Member, Vietnam Foundation for the Arts; and is a founding member of the Asian Contemporary Art Consortium in New York, a group serving the interests of Asian art and culture at the world’s leading museums and galleries. She is an active member of the American Association of Art Museum Directors.
She has served as an Editor for Asian contemporary art, The Grove Dictionary of Art, published by Oxford University Press, London and New York, and is the author and editor of many books, monographs, and anthologies, among them books on the Chinese contemporary artist Zhang Huan and a co-authored work on the art of the Cultural Revolution published by Yale University Press in 2008. Her most recent scholarly book, Breakout: Chinese Art Outside China (Charta, 2007), focuses on the international Chinese artistic diaspora.
Prior to joining Asia Society, Chiu was Founding Director of the Asia-Australia Arts Centre in Sydney, Australia (1996–2001). She earned her Ph.D in Art History and M.A. in Arts Administration in her native Australia.