She was the Artistic Director of dOCUMENTA (13) which opened in Kassel on June 9, 2012. Previously, she was the director of the Museo di Arte Contemporanea di Torino at Castello di Rivoli in Turin until 2009, and chief curator of the same museum from 2002 to 2008. In October 2012 ArtReview magazine named her number one in their annual Power 100 list of the most influential figures in contemporary art. She is of Bulgarian-Italian descent. She is married to the Italian artist Cesare Pietroiusti and has two daughters.
After graduation, she moved to Rome and began to write as an art critic for daily newspapers, including Reporter and Il Sole 24 Ore. Her reporting centered on early 20th century avant-garde and contemporary art. In 1999, she published a book about the Italian Arte Povera movement with Phaidon Press, London. She wrote the first monographs on the work of South African artist William Kentridge in 1996/97 (Brussels, Palais des Beaux Arts) and on Canadian artist Janet Cardiff in 2001 (New York, PS1 Contemporary Art Center).
After working as an independent exhibition curator for many years, she was the Senior Curator at P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center in New York, an affiliate of the Museum of Modern Art. Serving in this position from 1999–2001, she initiated the first edition of Greater New York which was organized with other curators of MoMA PS1. Following this tenure, she was Chief Curator at the Castello di Rivoli Museum in Turin, Italy from 2001 to 2008 and interim director of the museum in 2009. She has since worked, worldwide, as a curator. Amongst other exhibitions, she was the Artistic Director of the 16th Biennale of Sydney in 2008, entitled Revolutions–Forms that Turn. On December 3, 2008, she was appointed Artistic Director of the thirteenth edition of documenta, dOCUMENTA (13), which took place between 9 June until 16 September 2012, in Kassel, Germany.
Christov-Bakargiev was appointed director of the GAM and the Castello di Rivoli in 2015.
Ridgewood, New Jersey, 1957