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Tatyana Franck

Tatyana Franck
Tatyana Franck (Photo by Anoush Abrar)

FIAF Appoints Tatyana Franck as President

Franck Will Help Grow FIAF into an International Leader in French Education and Culture in the New Digital Landscape

TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 16, 2021, NEW YORK, NY — The French Institute Alliance Française (FIAF) has named Tatyana Franck, 37, as the institution’s next President—charged with leading FIAF’s current growth in French education and culture in New York City and online—the FIAF Board of Directors announced today.

Tatyana Franck is currently the Director of Photo Elysée in Lausanne, Switzerland, one of the most highly regarded photography museums in Europe. Under Franck’s leadership, the museum has reached unprecedented heights in recognition for its enriched collections, exciting new partnerships, local and community engagement, and international influence. Her innovative vision of bringing prestigious exhibitions and making them accessible to all audiences has significantly grown and diversified the museum’s attendance. She also implemented a new digital strategy to expand the museum’s international reach. Her strong leadership, global strategic vision, and participatory management style made her the perfect choice for FIAF.

In her current position, Franck oversaw a much celebrated and critically acclaimed CHF 100M ($108M USD) new construction of the Photo Elysée and mudac, which more than doubled the museum’s artistic spaces and tripled the organization’s archives. She has also been involved for 7 years in the construction of the new art district Plateforme 10, and led an award-winning redesign as part of the project.

Tatyana Franck will build on current FIAF President Marie-Monique Steckel’s impressive 17-year legacy of updating FIAF’s renowned spaces, theaters, and classrooms, while building important bridges between French and American artists, thinkers, politicians, and businesses.

At FIAF, Franck aims to continue the level of excellence achieved over the past decades, bringing together stakeholders to further develop the institution.

“As chairman of FIAF’s Board of Directors, I was impressed with Tatyana’s immense leadership skills and global mindset in expanding FIAF’s reach in the coming years as the digital landscape continues to evolve,” said Charles S. Cohen, “Her deep passion for education and extensive background in the arts makes her uniquely qualified for this multi-faceted position.”

Before Photo Elysée, Franck was Director of the Claude Picasso Archives in Paris and Geneva and attended Columbia Business School’s Executive MBA Program in Asia, London and NYC. She currently sits on several boards, including the Swiss Federal Design Awards Commission, Art Museums of Switzerland, Henri Cartier-Bresson Foundation in Paris (Treasurer), Fondation Art Explora in Paris, and Fondation du Jeu de Paume in Paris.

“I am thrilled to bring my international experience in public and private governance, my capacity to unite and mobilize important stakeholders, and my strong international network to increase global visibility for FIAF,” said Franck, “I look forward to working with the Board, my colleagues, and the French and American communities in New York to deepen FIAF’s incomparable position in the city.”

Franck will assume her role as FIAF President in March 2022.

Violaine Huisman

Violaine Huisman (Photo by Beowulf Sheehan)

FIAF Appoints Violaine Huisman as Director of Cultural Affairs


The French Institute Alliance Française (FIAF), announces the appointment of Violaine Huisman to the position of Director of Cultural Affairs. Huisman is a French-American festival curator, writer and translator who has contributed to FIAF’s programming since 2005. In her new position, Huisman will lead efforts to present an array of multi-disciplinary cultural programs to audiences that reflect New York’s multifaceted identity. Huisman will oversee all of FIAF’s cultural programs and will begin curating her first performing arts season in the fall 2024 with the Crossing The Line Festival. She intends to develop a robust literary program and rejuvenate FIAF’s Library, introducing creative writing classes in both French and English, programming new musical series, and partnering with a wide array of NYC institutions.

FIAF President Tatyana Franck says, “We’re absolutely thrilled to welcome such an amazing talent. Violaine has an impressive knowledge of French and Francophone artists and culture both in, and around New York City. As a talented Franco-American author, she will create a natural bridge between the students and audiences we serve and the French language at the core of FIAF’s mission with its language centers in Manhattan and Montclair, New Jersey. Violaine brings a wealth of experience to us from her time at BAM and throughout her ventures abroad. She will make a wonderful addition to the team and will continue FIAF’s commitment to ambitious and audacious programming through exploring the richness of our heritage and new discoveries.”

Huisman grew up in Paris and has lived in New York for over two decades. After a career in publishing, she transitioned to performing arts, working in programming at BAM from 2008 to 2016, and as a freelance curator. She has been involved with FIAF since 2005, serving as consultant, moderator to literary discussions, and most recently co-curator to the first three editions of TILT Kids Festival. Her first novel Fugitive parce que reine was published in the U.S. in 2021 as The Book of Mother and long listed for the International Booker Prize.

Huisman will assume her full-time position at FIAF on August 28, 2023.

FIAF Safety Measures

Safety Measures at FIAF

[Updated September 7, 2022]

The health and well-being of all our visitors and team are our number one priority.

The safety measures below have been set up keeping in mind the current guidelines issued by City and State authorities as well as the variety of educational and cultural activities that FIAF presents for both adults and children.

We ask everyone to follow the safety measures and pay attention to the instructions of security guards, ushers, teachers, and other FIAF team members. We thank you for your patience and cooperation.

Masks Optional

Masks are no longer required at any FIAF location including inside our classrooms. Masks are recommended but no longer mandatory in our theater and event spaces. Anyone who wishes to wear a mask may continue to do so.

Proof of Covid-19 Vaccination Not Required

Guests and FIAF Students are no longer required to show proof of Covid-19 vaccination to attend an event or class at any FIAF location.

General Visitor Guidelines

Please stay home if you are not feeling well, have exhibited symptoms of Covid-19 recently, or have been exposed to someone diagnosed with Covid-19.

If you have tickets for a FIAF event and are unable to attend because you have tested positive for Covid-19 or been exposed to someone with Covid-19, please contact within 24 hours of the event to transfer your ticket to another attendee, if possible. We are no longer offering refunds for tickets due to Covid-19 infections.

Safety Measures Taken by FIAF

  • Hand-sanitizing stations are offered throughout FIAF at entrances, elevators, and other high-traffic areas.
  • Event spaces, classrooms, elevators, restrooms, and other high-touch areas are cleaned and disinfected throughout the day.
  • We have made improvements to overall air quality and ventilation and expanded the use of high-efficiency filters in all of our venues.

These measures are implemented to improve safety for all, but they are not an absolute protection against Covid-19. Guests assume their own risk by entering FIAF spaces. The measures currently in place are subject to change and may be revised at any time.