Tom Eccles

Executive director at the Center for Curatorial Studies at Bard

When not touring journalists round his toy-soldier collection (while Tony Oursler ‘hung out in the next room tinkering on the curator’s piano’), coprogramming the talks at Frieze New York or conducting interviews for this magazine, Eccles passes wisdom to the curatorial students of Bard College in upstate New York. In doing so, the former director of the Public Art Fund in New York has shaped the fledging ideas of exhibition-makers who have dispersed globally. This year at Bard’s Hessel Museum of Art (which Eccles initiated ten years ago), he cocurated, with Lauren Cornell, the expansive group show Invisible Adversaries, built around the eponymous film by VALIE EXPORT. The show also included the work of Liam Gillick, with whom Eccles is an adviser to Maja Hoffmann’s Luma Foundation (alongside Hans Ulrich Obrist, Philippe Parreno and Beatrix Ruf). Eccles also sits on the board of the Keith Haring Foundation and notably, given his role in New York cultural life over the past 20 years, became a US citizen this year.