Mariët Westermann

As executive vice president of the Mellon Foundation, Mariët Westermann directs the Foundation’s grantmaking programs and works closely with the president and her fellow officers on strategic directions and initiatives.

Prior to taking up her position in 2010, Ms. Westermann was the first provost and chief academic officer of New York University Abu Dhabi, charged with directing the development of the new campus and overseeing the design of the academic program and recruitment of the faculty. At NYU, she had previously served as director and Paulette Goddard professor at the Institute of Fine Arts. Earlier in her career, Ms. Westermann held positions as associate director of research at the Clark Art Institute and as assistant and associate professor at Rutgers University.

A historian of Netherlandish art, Ms. Westermann is the author of A Worldly Art: The Dutch Republic 1585-1718 (Harry Abrams, 1996), The Amusements of Jan Steen: Comic Painting in the 17th Century (Waanders, 1997), Rembrandt (Art and Ideas, Phaidon, 2000), and numerous articles and reviews. She edited Anthropologies of Art (Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institite, 2005) and four volumes of the Netherlands Yearbook for History of Art. Her collaborations with museums include her Rijksmuseum Dossier: Johannes Vermeer (Waanders, 2004) and curatorship of the exhibition Art and Home: Dutch Interiors in the Age of Rembrandt (Denver Art Museum and Newark Museum, 2001). Ms. Westermann's current interests concern Dutch art in the global 17th century, and the Garden of Eden in the imagination of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.

Ms. Westermann earned her BA at Williams College, and her MA and PhD in the history of art at NYU's Institute of Fine Arts. She has received fellowships and grants from the American Philosophical Society, Center for Advanced Study in the Visual Arts, Clark Art Institute, and National Endowment for the Humanities. Ms. Westermann’s served as book reviews editor for The Art Bulletin. She is a trustee of MASS MoCA and of Little Red School House and Elizabeth Irwin High School, and serves on the Advisory Committee of the Scholar Rescue Fund.