Elena Pakhoutova is Curator of Himalayan Art at the Rubin Museum of Art. She is currently organizing The Second Buddha (opening winter 2018). She also organized Nepalese Seasons: Rain and Ritual (2016) with Dr. Gautama Vajracharya; Collecting Paradise: Buddhist Art of Kashmir and Its Legacies (2015) with Rob Linroth; The All-Knowing Buddha: A Secret Guide (2014) with Karl Debreczeny; Bodies in Balance: The Art of Tibetan Medicine (2014) with Theresia Hofer; Count Your Blessings: the Art of Prayer Beads in Asia (2013); Illuminated: the Art of Sacred Books (2012) with Agnieszka Helman-Wazny; Once Upon Many Times: Legends and Myths in Himalayan Art (2011); the ongoing Gateway to Himalayan Art; and the Tibetan Buddhist Shrine Room (2010, 2013, 2015).
Dr. Pakhoutova completed her PhD in Asian Art History at the University of Virginia in 2009 and is a recipient of Gerda Henkel Stiftung Research Fellowship. She taught at the University of Virginia and the Eugene Lang College at the New School, New York. While living in the Himalayas, Dr. Pakhoutova apprenticed and trained in traditional clay sculpture with Bhutanese artists. Her background in Tibetan Buddhist studies and experience with Himalayan cultures contribute to her interdisciplinary approach to art history. Her research interests include topics such as text and image; art and Buddhist pilgrimage; art production and patronage; narrative in Tibetan visual culture; and contemporary Tibetan art.