Eike Schmidt is an art historian and the Director of the Uffizi Galleries in Florence (Italy) since November 2015. Prior to that, from 2011 he was member of the Scientific Committee of TEFAF (The European Fine Art Fair), Maastricht, Netherlands and from 2009 he was curator and head of the Department of Decorative Arts, Textiles & Sculpture at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts and member of the Scientific Committee of the Sculpture Journal, London. In 2009 he passed with distinction the PhD in art history at Ruprecht-Karls-Universität, with a dissertation on “The Medici’s collection of ivory sculptures in the 16th and 17th centuries”.
In 2008-2009 he was Director and head of the Department of European Sculpture & Works of Art at Sotheby’s, London. From 2006 to 2008 he was curator in the Department of Sculptures & Decorative Arts at the J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles and from 2004 to 2008 he participated in the research project entitled “Women at the Medicean Court”, at the Biblioteca Hertziana – Max Planck Institute for Art History Library, Rome. Previously, he was curator and researcher at the National Gallery of Art in Washington from 2001 to 2006. He has worked and lived in Italy for a long time, especially in Florence, where from 1994 to 2001 he was scholar and researcher at the Deutsches Kunsthistorisches Institut. He has received the Awards ‘Museum Acquisitions of the Year’ Awards by the Apollo magazine seven times, for artworks acquired for the J. Paul Getty Museum and Minneapolis Institute of Arts. In 2018, Blouin Artinfo included Eike Schmidt in the list of the ten Best Museum Directors in the world, for the excellent results achieved in managing the Uffizi Galleries. In 2017 he was honoured with the ‘Wooow’ prize by the students from Novara (Italy) and the ‘Excellency Award’ by the Foundation for Italian Art and Culture (New York). Since 2017 he is honorary professor at the Humboldt-Universität in Berlin. In 1997 he was awarded the ‘Nicoletta Quinto’ prize by the Premio Internazionale Galileo Galilei Foundation of Pisa.