New York, NY–Helen Toomer is leaving her position as Director of PULSE Contemporary Art Fair to focus on launching an artist residency in upstate New York and developing educational and arts related projects. Toomer will join the PULSE Advisory Committee who, along with the rest of the PULSE team, welcomes Katelijne De Backer as the new Director next month.
“I have enjoyed stewarding PULSE over the past three and a half years and am very thankful for the relationships I have formed with the galleries and their artists. I am thrilled to embark on a new chapter and to get back to working directly with artists, who we need to nurture now, more than ever,” Toomer said. “I am proud to still be connected with PULSE through the Advisory Committee and I am excited to hand over the reins to Katelijne, who has extensive experience and connections within the art community. I am certain she will continue to evolve PULSE for the benefit of our exhibitors and visitors in Miami Beach, and for the Friends of PULSE360.”
Of her new position, De Backer says, “Joining the PULSE team and following in the footsteps of Helen Toomer as Director is a wonderful opportunity to further develop PULSE Miami Beach as well as the year-round program, PULSE360. Connecting collectors with galleries at PULSE in Miami Beach, and then continuing to engage them in a larger conversation with a program that extends beyond the busy fair weeks, was a smart and innovative move Helen took. I look forward to using my extensive art fair and gallery experience to continue to improve and develop PULSE, and to working with the extraordinary exhibitors, many of them old friends.”
Katelijne De Backer was recently the Director of Art New York and Aqua Art Miami. Prior to that she served as Managing Director of top contemporary art gallery Lehmann Maupin, where she oversaw several teams with locations in New York’s Chelsea neighborhood and the Lower East Side, as well as in Hong Kong. She spent over a decade as the Executive Director of The Armory Show, where she was instrumental in transforming the bohemian-style fair of 75 galleries to a world-renowned exhibition of more than 200 galleries. Earlier, De Backer produced alternative music programs for MTV Europe. She is a native of Antwerp, Belgium and obtained her Master’s Degree in Sociology from the Free University of Brussels.
Following a successful 2016 edition, PULSE Miami Beach returns to Indian Beach Park at 46th Street and Collins Avenue, marking the 13th edition of PULSE Contemporary Art Fair in Miami. Opening on Thursday, December 7th with its signature Private Preview Brunch, VIP guests and press are welcomed for first access to new works. Running through Sunday, December 10th, 2017, PULSE Miami Beach continues with its focused curation of group exhibitions in the North Tent plus solo and dual-artist presentations in the South Tent.
As one of the most anticipated events during Miami Art Week, PULSE Contemporary Art Fair is a well-respected source for the discovery of emerging to mid-career artists presented by an international array of exhibitors. This creative community paired with a dynamic roster of programming at PULSE, such as PLAY, PROJECTS and PERSPECTIVES, offers a comprehensive overview of the best contemporary art being produced today.