Israel Museum director James S. Snyder has been named one of the 50 most influential people in the art world by the French newspaper Le Journal des Arts.

Snyder, an American who has been at the museum's helm for the past 14 years, told Haaretz yesterday: "It is a great honor to be in this group of leaders in the international world of art and museums."

Snyder was ranked 46th by the French paper, which is a sister edition to The Art Newspaper. Also on the list are the collectors Eli Broad and Leonard Lauder; the director of the Museum of Modern Art in New York, Glenn Lowry; Neil MacGregor, director of the British Museum; architects Frank Gehry and Zaha Hadid and designers Ron Arad and Philippe Starck.

Snyder said his place on the list attested among other things to the Israel Museum's many achievements in recent years.

Refering to the recently completed $100 million renovation, Snyder said the museum's transformation has brought it from an institution with potential to a realization of that potential and center stage in the international art world.

Snyder came to the Israel Museum from his position as deputy director of the Museum of Modern Art in New York from 1986 to 1996. He is a Loeb Fellow of Harvard's Graduate School of Design.