Maria L. Kelly is the Assistant Curator of Photography at the High Museum of Art. Maria was the curatorial assistant in the High’s Photography Department from 2011 to 2016, returning to the role in 2019 after completing her master’s degree. During her time at the High, Maria has helped organize more than twenty-five photography installations, including exhibitions featuring the work of Helen Levitt, Abelardo Morell, Sheila Pree Bright, Wynn Bullock, Gordon Parks and Thomas Struth, among others.
Notable exhibitions at the High include Underexposed: Women Photographers from the Collection (2021), What Is Near: Reflections on Home (2016), Helen Levitt: In the Street (2015), and Leonard Freed: Black in White America (2014). She was the venue curator for Deana Lawson (2022), co-organized by the ICA Boston and MoMA PS1, and André Kertész: Postcards from Paris (2022), organized by the Art Institute of Chicago. Her master’s thesis, The Unfixed Landscape: Meghann Riepenhoff & Matthew Brandt (2018), considered experimental bodies of work by both artists within the context of the history of photography and the Land Art movement.
Maria holds an M.A. from Columbia University and a B.A. from the University of Georgia, both in art history. Previously, she worked at The Sir Elton John Photography Collection and the Brooklyn Museum, and has held internships at The Museum of Modern Art, the Guggenheim Museum, and the Georgia Museum of Art.