Vanja V. Malloy, the Dana Feitler Director of the Smart Museum of Art at the University of Chicago announced today the appointment of Meg Jackson Fox as Director of the Feitler Center for Academic Inquiry and Head of Education.
In this leadership position, Jackson Fox will serve as a critical ambassador for advancing the role of art in teaching at large and will shape interdisciplinary pedagogy and engagement at the University of Chicago through partnerships with faculty, students, and community members.
“Meg is a visionary educator, an accomplished museum professional, and curator who is committed to mutual collaboration, interdisciplinary exchange, and elevating inclusive models of history that simultaneously reflect our times,” said Malloy. “I am pleased to announce Meg’s appointment to this significant senior leadership role at the Smart Museum.”
Jackson Fox is currently the Curator of Interdisciplinary and Community Practices and a member of the senior leadership team at the University of Arizona’s Center for Creative Photography. At CCP, she rebuilt and led the institution’s learning and engagement department, strategically expanding it to include marketing, exhibition design, and visitor services. In 2021, she initiated a multi-year exhibition program dedicated to interdisciplinary studies through the arts for CCP’s first new gallery space since 1989. Working with both campus and community partners, Jackson Fox co-created interdisciplinary exhibitions with faculty and students from across the arts, humanities, sciences and social sciences, most recently trees stir in their leaves (a collaboration with the University of Arizona’s Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research) and Sessions on Creative Photography: Hazel Larsen Archer (a collaboration with non-profit organization Sunnyside Foundation and the University of Arizona’s Department of Public and Applied Humanities).
In addition, Jackson Fox piloted a Spanish-English bilingual initiative to support inclusive access to arts-based learning and language representation within a cultural institution, and she secured funding to develop CCP’s first Emerging Photographic Education Fellowship, intended to reimagine career pipelines and support structures for young professionals in the arts. Since 2022, Jackson Fox has worked in close partnership with faculty in the University of Arizona’s School of Art and Department of East Asian Studies, collaborating on the launch of a series of global symposia on topics in Asian Photography and coordinating a series of programs and a new exhibition on Korean Photography, curated by the Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Korea.
“I am thrilled to welcome Meg to the Smart and UChicago. Throughout my tenure, I’ve experienced the impact of the Feitler Center and regularly use and promote this tremendous resource on campus,” said Catriona MacLeod, Vice Provost for the Arts and Frank Curtis Springer and Gertrude Melcher Springer Professor in the College and the Department of Germanic Studies at the University of Chicago. “I co-led the search for this position and experienced Meg’s spirit and ambition early in the process. I look forward to seeing the outcomes of Vanja and Meg’s leadership of the Feitler Center and education initiatives as they move ahead into the Museum’s next chapter.”
Jackson Fox previously served as Assistant Professor in the School of Art and Art History at the University of Denver, where she taught undergraduate and graduate courses in global modern and contemporary art rooted in experimental pedagogies, new technologies, and community practices.
“I am filled with gratitude for the opportunity to join the passionate teams at the Feitler Center and the Smart Museum,” said Jackson Fox. “All my life I have looked up to the creative and intellectual life of the University of Chicago, and with students and colleagues there, I look forward to co-creating space for innovative research and further infusing the arts across all disciplines. I am very eager to learn from Chicago’s communities, to engage in meaningful, sustained community building and to support community-driven goals through the arts.”
Jackson Fox holds a PhD in Contemporary Art and Critical Theory from the University of Arizona; a master’s degree in Art and Museum Studies from Georgetown University, jointly convened with Sotheby’s Institute-London; a master’s degree in Modern European History from the University of Tennessee; and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Alabama-Birmingham. She begins her new role on October 2.
“The Smart is a hub that connects the many parts of the University with our public audiences, creating an interdisciplinary environment in which people come together and learn from one another through their exchange with art. This mission remains a priority at the Smart and I am honored to partner with Meg as she develops her vision and strategy to grow academic engagement and learning at the Museum in the years to come,” said Malloy.