Renée Vara is the Director of Vara Fine Arts, a full service private curatorial firm specializing in 20th century, contemporary and emerging art and design. Her firm provides a full range of advisory and collection management services as well educational programs and lectures.
She holds undergraduate and graduate degrees in art history from Franklin & Marshall College and Hunter/CUNY respectively. For over a decade she was the National Fine Arts Specialist at Chubb Insurance, where she served as the private curator and collection manager for Artnews Magazine’s "Top 100 Collectors" with collections valued up to $1 billion. As an expert, she has been cited in countless publications including: Forbes, The New York Times, Dow Jones, The Financial Times, The Wall Street Journal, Artnews, Art & Antiques, CNN, Town and Country, US News and World Report, American Public Media and Crain's.
Renée has been an active Adjunct Professor at NYU SCPS for 14 years and has taught over 14 core courses in Art Market Studies, Museum Studies and Art History. In 2011 she was awarded the NYU Excellence in Teaching Award. She is also a Curriculum Consultant for NYU and has initiated several new areas of study including a Master’s Degree, and most recently, “New Media and Technology” wherein art professionals investigate the role of digital and social media in the art world. As part of that program she is currently teaching a course, “The Art Market Revolution: Online Art Auctions.” Renée has also served as an Adjunct Professor at the Sotheby’s Institute of Art and was an Appointed Lecturer for over 3 years at the Guggenheim Museum in New York, focusing on emerging art.
She has lectured and published on collecting contemporary art and on the art market in countless publications and venues such as the American Association of Museums, the Norwood Club, Nation Arts Society, Sotheby’s, Art Basel/Art Basel Miami, UBS, Clairden Leu, Columbia University, New York County Lawyers’ Association and Independent Curators International (ICI). She curates international emerging art shows at fairs and venues around the world including Art Basel Miami, Scope, Frieze, and the Istanbul Biennale.
She also serves as an Executive Board Member for the Appraisers Association of America, a nonprofit organization which sets national appraisal and valuation standards, and as the Editorial Director and Publisher of the independent artist journal, INPUT (www.inputjournal.org).