Having joined the staff of Classical American Homes Preservation Trust in January 2015, Peter M. Kenny is responsible for the overall management and curatorial vision at its seven sites in New York City, the Hudson River Valley, North and South Carolina, and St. Croix in the U.S. Virgin Islands. Prior to joining Classical American Homes he worked for nearly thirty years at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, retiring as the Ruth Bigelow Wriston Curator of American Decorative Arts and Administrator of the American Wing in November 2014. Peter M. Kenny is a frequent lecturer at museums and universities nationwide on the topic of American furniture and decorative arts.
In 2007, while on the staff of the Metropolitan, he oversaw the design and installation of The American Wing’s new Classical Galleries – a suite of galleries devoted to American art created in all media from 1810 to 1840. He was also responsible for the installation of the 1884 McKim, Mead, and White Stair Hall from the Metcalfe House in Buffalo, New York (1991), and the New York Dutch Room from the 1751 Daniel Peter Winne House in Albany County (2009) – period rooms in The American Wing. Curator of the 1998 exhibition Honoré Lannuier, Parisian Cabinetmaker in Federal New York, his essays in the exhibition catalogue won the Robert C. Smith Award of the Decorative Arts Society for the best essay on American Decorative Arts. He was also co-organizer, along with Michael K. Brown of the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, of the 2012 exhibition Duncan Phyfe, Master Cabinetmaker in New York and co-author of the accompanying catalogue, which was awarded the Henry Allan Moe Prize by the New York State Historical Association. Most recently he was the recipient of the 2015 Eric M. Wunsch Award for Excellence in the American Arts.
In addition to his work at Classical American Homes Preservation Trust, Mr. Kenny serves on the boards of Boscobel Restoration, Inc. Garrison, New York and The Chipstone Foundation, in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, which publishes annually American Furniture and Ceramics in America.
Mr. Kenny is a graduate of Montclair State University and received his M.A. from the Cooperstown Graduate Program (State University of New York College at Oneonta) in History Museum Studies.Back to Speakers