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.