Barnes Foundation taps leader of Miami museum to serve as new president, executive director

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PHILADELPHIA — A major art institution in Philadelphia has a new leader.

The Barnes Foundation says Thomas Collins will begin serving as president and executive director in March.

The foundation houses a large collection of Impressionist and post-Impressionist pieces by artists including Matisse, Renoir, Cezanne and Picasso.

Collins has spent the past five years working in Florida as director of the Perez Art Museum Miami. Before that, he led the Neuberger Museum of Art in Purchase, New York.

Wednesday's announcement comes a year after previous Barnes leader Derek Gillman stepped down to become a visiting art professor at nearby Drexel University.

Gillman oversaw the collection's move from a gallery in suburban Lower Merion to downtown Philadelphia after a years-long legal battle. Its new $150 million building opened in 2012.

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