Joseph A. Becherer Ph.D.

Becherer Joseph

Name: Joseph Antenucci Becherer
Position: Director and Curator of Sculpture 
Email Address:  jbechere@nd.edu 

What is the most rewarding aspect of your position?: 
Without a doubt, the most rewarding role I have is to do all I can to bring people together with works of art. There are direct ways like working towards meaningful acquisitions and exhibitions, but also supporting outreach and programming. Much of my efforts come in the support of an excellent team of art and museum professionals, but also in being an ambassador of sorts, to the University, the region, and the international art community. Ultimately, it all stems from the belief that art reaches, informs, enlightens, challenges, and delights the human spirit.

How did you get into museum work?: 
As a child, my great aunt Mary took me to museums. They were magical adventures and they planted deep in my being that museums were very special, safe places. However, it wasn’t until I was at university that I learned Art History as a discipline existed and that a myriad of careers could be had in museums and galleries. My professors led me with scholarship and furthered my curiosity. I still feel the magic every time I enter a museum but now I have a responsibility to make sure our museum is special and safe for a broad and diverse audience. How lucky am I?

Favorite work in the Snite Museum of Art?:
When my sons were young, our family started a tradition of heading into parts of the museum where we would not necessarily head by existing interest or awareness. It captivated me with the endless rewards of exploring new worlds—ones I didn’t know much about if anything. Every day I try to go into the galleries and engage with a new work or two. Sometimes it’s just ten or fifteen minutes, but I am transported. I feel humbled but also, maybe, that I have grown just a bit. That work, that day, is my favorite. Did I mention I was lucky?