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DAYTON (September 1, 2020) –The Contemporary Dayton (The Co) is elated to announce the partnership with Michael Goodson as the new Curator and Director of Programs. Goodson’s talents span over 20 years curating exhibitions for The Wexner Center for the Arts, The Ohio State University, Beeler Gallery at Columbus College of Art & Design, and James Cohan Gallery, NY.

“I am very pleased to be joining the The Contemporary Dayton’s team in what is essentially a return to where my connection with and understanding of the power of art first began,” Goodson recalls. “When I first spoke with Eva Buttacavoli, Executive Director & Chief Curator of The Co about the vision of that she has nurtured over the last decade, it was immediately clear to me that Dayton and its surrounding communities are now, and perhaps always have been, ready for the challenge of contemporary art.”

Goodson’s plans will expand programming to create a significant shift in exhibitions that will integrate themes surrounding social injustice and equity from internationally renowned and local artists. The Co’s exhibition lineup for 2020–2021 includes a series of exciting exhibitions that kick off on Friday, September 11, 2020, with Goodson’s longtime friend, artist Nari Ward, and his breathtaking art installation We The People. Following in 2021, Goodson will be curating exhibitions from locally acclaimed Dayton artists, Zachary Armstrong and Mychaelyn Michalec.

“This is a new and exciting era for The Co and I am thrilled to have Michael Goodson with his many connections to the art world and his never-ending sensitivity to artists in the Dayton area,” said Eva Buttacavoli, Executive Director & Chief Curator of The Co. “Goodson is an accomplished leader with a track record of strategic planning for exhibitions that fuel visitor’s curiosity while creating a personal connection to the artwork.

As a teenager, Goodson moved to Dayton as a part of a Wright-Patterson family and completed his undergraduate work in studio art at Wright State University and taught sculpture and performance art at Hunter College, NY. He also taught studio and art history at Wright State and Wittenberg University. He holds an MFA in sculpture from Cranbrook Academy of Art, MI and has organized single artist exhibitions by Diana Al-Hadid, Charles Atlas, Leonardo Drew, Trenton Doyle Hancock, Jessica Jackson Hutchins, Donald Moffett, Carrie Moyer, Roxy Paine, Yinka Shonibare, Robert Smithson, Fred Tomaselli, and many others.


Mission: To provide art for the community and a community for artists.

Overview: The Contemporary Dayton (The Co) is the region’s contemporary art center. Established in 1991 as Dayton Visual Arts Center (DVAC), a 501c3, The Co produces and presents original exhibitions and programs, art events, community partnerships, and artist opportunities. Exhibitions and education programs feature artists living and working today, both nationally and in Ohio, with an emphasis on those whose work focuses on issues of social justice. In addition to its three galleries—open to all and always free—its retail store, the CoSHOP, provides income for Ohio artists and extends The Co’s accessibility to art, from visitor engagement to educational outreach through store products, programs, and experiences.

The Co is proud to support the creation of connections among the arts, community building, civic engagement, community planning, and use of public space, and makes an annual economic impact of 3.4 million to the region. Recently raising 1 million during the Pandemic to expand and move into its new home in downtown’s historic Dayton Arcade, The Co is led by Executive Director Eva Buttacavoli, a 30-year art museum administrator, curator, and educator, whose previous roles were at The Contemporary Austin, TX and The Perez Art Museum Miami, FL; and Curator Michael Goodson, who previously served as Curator at the Wexner Center for the Arts, Beeler Gallery, Columbus College of Art and Design, OH; and as Director at James Cohan Gallery, NY.

The Contemporary Dayton receives operating support from Culture Works, Montgomery County Arts & Cultural District, Ohio Arts Council, the Virginia W. Kettering Foundation, and Members.