A museum professional with special interests in the areas of intellectual property and rights management, museum governance, civic engagement, and museum deaccessioning, Kuruvilla’s past research interests include the intersection of ethics and the law in museum deaccessioning and the impact of the Visual Artists Rights Act on museums. The second edition of Kuruvilla’s book, A Legal Dictionary for Museum Professionals, is available from Rowman & Littlefield.
Kuruvilla is the recipient of multiple awards, including the CALI Award for Excellence in Cultural Property Law Seminar and the Art Law Award from the Center for Art, Museum & Cultural Heritage Law. She is a Leopold Schepp Foundation Scholar. She was a student clerk for the Honorable Arlander Keys (US District Court for the Northern District of Illinois) and the Honorable La Quietta Hardy-Campbell (Circuit Court of Cook County). Upon graduation, Kuruvilla clerked for the Honorable Melvin Gelade of the New Jersey Superior Court.
In addition to her teaching experience with Kutztown University, Kuruvilla teaches in the Arts Administration M.A. program at the University of Kentucky and the Museum Studies minor at Lincoln University. She is a past instructor in the Museum Professions M.A. at Seton Hall University.
Kuruvilla has presented at conferences of the American Association for State and Local History, the Mid-Atlantic Association of Museums, and the New Jersey History and Historic Preservation Conference. In addition to teaching and speaking, Kuruvilla has worked in the field as Interim Director of the Meadowlands Museum, Rights Manager at the Newark Museum, in the education department at Save Ellis Island, and as an independent consultant. She worked as a law clerk for the President of the Chicago History Museum and for the Chicago Public Art Group and a research assistant to Patty Gerstenblith. From 2019-2023 she was a member of the American Association for State and Local History's Standards and Ethics Committee, and she is the past Board Secretary of The Georgian Society.
Most recently, Kuruvilla has joined the Illinois nonprofit Agate Creatives as a founder and their "organization re-imaginer," helping to bring the creative's progressive ideas of anti-hierarchical forms, anti-racism, and anti-PWI structures into their legal formation. Kuruvilla looks forward to working with her fellow Creators in bringing their core beliefs to the wider museum field in coming projects.
Course Regularly Taught
ARU 562: Arts and Civic Engagement
ARU 564: Ethical and Legal Issues in the Arts
ARU 595: Graduate Seminar
A Legal Dictionary for Museum Professionals 2nd edition, Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2021.
“All in a Day’s Work: How Museums May Approach Deaccessioning as a Necessary Collections Management Tool.” Journal of Art, Technology, and Intellectual Property Law 22(1), 119-81. (As Heather Hope Stephens, 2011.)
“The Art of Taxing and the Encouragement of Giving: The Artist-Museum Partnership Act as a Vehicle to Increase Museum Support,” unpublished, DePaul Law Review writing program, 2010. (As Heather Hope Stephens.)
M.A. Thesis: "Visualizing the Path Forward: The Visual Artists Rights Act of 1990 and Recommendations for a Response by American Museums." Seton Hall University, 2008. Advisor: Dr. Petra Chu.
Post-Bacc Thesis:" From Form to Body: The Dissolution of the Taboos Concerning the Use of the Human Form in Art and Science." Studio Arts Center International, 2005. Advisor: Maria Antonia Rinaldi
DePaul University College of Law, Chicago, IL
Juris Doctor; Certificate in Intellectual Property: Art & Museum Law
Seton Hall University, South Orange, NJ
Master of Arts with Distinction, Museum Professions (Museum Registration)
Studio Art Centers International, Florence, Italy
Post-Baccalaureate Certificate, Art History
Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey, Douglass College, New Brunswick, NJ
Bachelor of Arts, Art History Major, Psychology Minor
Agate Creatives, Co-Founder and Organizations Re-imaginer; Board Liaison
American Association for State and Local History, Standards and Ethics Committee (past)
|Zoom or SH404
|ARU 564 801