Naomi Beckwith is Deputy Director and Jennifer and David Stockman Chief Curator at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum. Prior to the Guggenheim, Beckwith was the Manilow Senior Curator at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago where her exhibitions and publications centered on the impact of identity and multidisciplinary practices within contemporary art. She organized and co-organized acclaimed exhibitions such as Howardena Pindell: What Remains to Be Seen, the first survey of the artist, and whose catalogue received the George Wittenborn Memorial Book Award. Beckwith also developed The Freedom Principle: Experiments in Art and Music, 1965 to Now and Homebodies, as well as solo shows on The Propeller Group, Keren Cytter, Leslie Hewitt, William J. O’Brien, and Jimmy Robert; and a project with Yinka Shonibare CBE. Before joining the MCA, Beckwith was Associate Curator at the Studio Museum in Harlem, where she organized exhibitions such as Lynette Yiadom-Boakye: Any Number of Preoccupations (2011) and 30 Seconds off an Inch (2009–10).
Beckwith served on the jury for the 2020 Hugo Boss Prize, is a member of the curatorial team realizing Grief and Grievance: Art and Mourning in America, an exhibition conceived by the late curator Okwui Enwezor for the New Museum and has organized numerous exhibitions such as The Long Dream, a presentation of 70 Chicago artists organized in response to the pandemic and social unrest; Prisoner of Love, centered around Arthur Jafa’s video phenomenon Love Is the Message, the Message Is Death; and Laurie Simmons: Big Camera/Little Camera, a retrospective that traveled from the Museum of Modern Art Fort Worth. Beckwith serves on the boards of the Laundromat Project, and she chaired the inaugural Curatorial Leadership Summit at the Armory Show in 2018. She has received fellowships at the Whitney Museum of American Art’s Independent Study Program, the Institute of Contemporary Art in Philadelphia, the Center for Curatorial Leadership, and other institutions. Beckwith holds an MA, with Distinction, from the Courtauld Institute of Art in London and a BA in history from Northwestern University in Chicago.