John Ravenal is the Sydney and Frances Lewis Family Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts. Since coming to VMFA in 1998, Ravenal’s exhibitions have included Vanitas: Meditations on Life and Death in Contemporary Art; Outer & Inner Space, a history of video art; Robert Lazzarini’s first solo museum exhibition; and Artificial Light, displayed at VCUarts Anderson Gallery and the Museum of Contemporary Art, North Miami.
From 1991–1998, Ravenal worked at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, where he was Associate Curator of Twentieth-Century Art. His exhibitions there included commissioned projects by Sherrie Levine, Lawrence Weiner, Richard Long, and Rirkrit Tiravanija; a retrospective of paintings and drawings by Sidney Goodman; and the first United States museum exhibition by Scottish artist Ian Hamilton Finlay. Ravenal earned his MA and M.Phil. in Art History from Columbia University.