Kathy Halbreich

  • Kathy Halbreich

    I FIRST VISITED the filmmaker Chantal Akerman in 1989—two years before I was named director of the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis—to propose that she document the seismic changes taking place in Eastern Europe after the fall of the Berlin Wall and before the imminent dissolution of the Soviet Union. I wasn’t interested in journalism’s objective pose so much as in the close intertwining of the personal and the political found in Akerman’s films, such as her influential three-hour-and-twenty-two-minute Jeanne Dielman, 23, quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles (1975). Since intimacy was at

  • Kathy Halbreich

    HAVING COME OF AGE IN THE 1960S, I’ve been unable to abandon a belief in a certain utopian imperative. But it was being at Minneapolis’s Walker Art Center—a medium sized museum in the middle of the country, with an incredible historical legacy—that first provided me with a platform for thinking about how to materialize this imperative and, more specifically, for asking questions about what the social backbone of such an institution could be. When I became director in 1991, I began to work on joining the inside and the outside, beginning with efforts among the staff and then within the