ABOUT

Every two years, the Providence Biennial brings challenging and inspiring works of global contemporary art to Rhode Island via a network of temporary exhibitions dispersed throughout the city-state. Leveraging the dynamic creativity, academic excellence, and the wealth of historic sites concentrated in Providence and beyond, we work collaboratively, partnering with a range of cultural, artistic and community organizations to create a program of  exhibitions and site-specific installations that will educate and delight the widest possible audiences.

Who we are

Founding Director and Co-CuratorJudith Tolnick Champa is an independent contemporary art curator launched by Brown University’s History of Art graduate program, where teaching with objects became her passion and the impetus for a curatorial career. An experienced art critic, she recently served as editor-in-chief of Art New England, the longstanding regional art magazine in Boston. Tolnick Champa was curatorial affairs director for Brown University’s David Winton Bell Gallery as well as director-curator for the former University of Rhode Island, Kingston Fine Arts Center Galleries. She is a 2011 Leadership RI graduate, and has served several terms on the board of the New England Museum Association (NEMA). Cultivating the complementary practices of curating and writing, inspired by the pace of global change, she is passionate about creating a high-profile Biennial for our region. As The Providence Biennial’s founder, Judith is motivated to lead and to work with tremendously talented colleagues and supporters to achieve this plan.

Judith Tolnick Champa

Founding Director and Co-Curator
Judith Tolnick Champa is an independent contemporary art curator launched by Brown University’s History of Art graduate program, where teaching with objects became her passion and the impetus for a curatorial career. An experienced art critic, she recently served as editor-in-chief of Art New England, the longstanding regional art magazine in Boston. Tolnick Champa was curatorial affairs director for Brown University’s David Winton Bell Gallery as well as director-curator for the former University of Rhode Island, Kingston Fine Arts Center Galleries. She is a 2011 Leadership RI graduate, and has served several terms on the board of the New England Museum Association (NEMA). Cultivating the complementary practices of curating and writing, inspired by the pace of global change, she is passionate about creating a high-profile Biennial for our region. As The Providence Biennial’s founder, Judith is motivated to lead and to work with tremendously talented colleagues and supporters to achieve this plan.
President and Co-Curator
An associate professor of contemporary art history at Rhode Island School of Design, Leora Maltz-Leca holds a Ph.D in art history from Harvard, as well as degrees from Yale and Brown.  In 2008 she returned to Providence, where she teaches courses on global contemporary art, critical and postcolonial theory, rhetoric and race. A recipient of a 2011/ 2012 Getty Postdoctoral Fellowship, a 2011 Creative Capital/ Andy Warhol Foundation Arts Writer’s Grant and a 2010 Library of Congress Swann fellowship for her forthcoming book on William Kentridge, Process as Metaphor

Leora Maltz-Leca

President and Co-Curator
An associate professor of contemporary art history at Rhode Island School of Design, Leora Maltz-Leca holds a Ph.D in art history from Harvard, as well as degrees from Yale and Brown.  In 2008 she returned to Providence, where she teaches courses on global contemporary art, critical and postcolonial theory, rhetoric and race. A recipient of a 2011/ 2012 Getty Postdoctoral Fellowship, a 2011 Creative Capital/ Andy Warhol Foundation Arts Writer’s Grant and a 2010 Library of Congress Swann fellowship for her forthcoming book on William Kentridge, Process as Metaphor & Other Doubtful Enterprises (University of California Press, 2017), she has published widely on contemporary art and theory in such venues as Artforum, Art Bulletin, Frieze, African Arts, Arte East, Art South Africa and Public Art Review. She currently lives in East Greenwich where she is not only pondering time and the convergence of the meridians on her world….but also writing her second book, Material Politics, which explores how contemporary artists in the postcolonies have mobilized their working methods and materials to counter some of late modernism’s most enduring myths.