News

  • A woman wearing a face mask on her phone outside the National Gallery in Trafalgar Square, London. Photo: PA Images/Alamy.

    Coronavirus Art-World Tracker: Canceled and Rescheduled Events

    Since its emergence in Wuhan, China, last December, the novel coronavirus COVID-19 has upended numerous cities and countries across the globe. Among the various sectors that have been heavily affected is the art world—an industry fueled by perpetual itinerancy as well as social gatherings of mass scale and close proximity. As the public health crisis escalates, art organizations have shut down events, have announced postponements, or are carefully trying to trudge forward. Here is a continually refreshed list of major events and institutions that have made such decisions due to the virus, which

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  • The Whitney Museum of American Art.

    MoMA and New Museum Among NY Institutions Cutting Jobs to Curb Deficits

    Major museums across New York City are laying off workers and furloughing employees to reduce payroll expenses as they brace to lose millions of dollars because of the COVID-19 quarantine. Within the course of a week, the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) laid off all eighty-five of its freelance education workers, the New Museum furloughed nearly one third of its full- and part-time staffers, and the Whitney Museum of American Art let go seventy-six employees who were unable to work remotely.

    “We have made these decisions with great reluctance as we continue to assess this new and unforeseen landscape

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  • Laura Raicovich. Photo: Michael Angelo.

    Leslie-Lohman Museum Appoints Laura Raicovich Interim Director

    The Leslie-Lohman Museum of Art in New York has named arts administrator, curator, and writer Laura Raicovich, the former head of the Queens Museum, as interim director. Raicovich was elected during a recent meeting of the institution’s board of trustees and will replace Gonzalo Casals, who was hired as commissioner of New York City’s Department of Cultural Affairs last month.

    “Laura is an ally to the queer community and the perfect fit to lead the museum,” Casals said. “I am active in the civic life of Jackson Heights, and I witnessed firsthand how she transformed Queens Museum into a dynamic,

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  • Renato Danese. Photo: Danese/Corey.

    Renato Danese (1944–2020)

    New York gallerist Renato Danese, who together with Carol Corey ran the gallery Danese/Corey for more than twenty years, died at his home in Westerly, Rhode Island, on Thursday, April 2, at the age of seventy-six years old. Corey confirmed that the cause of death was cancer. 

    Danese was raised in New Jersey and New York and studied English at George Washington University in Washington, DC. Under Walter Hopps’s tutelage, he began his career as a curator of twentieth-century art at the Washington Gallery of Modern Art, an independent arts space that exhibited the work of Sam Gilliam, Arshile Gorky,

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  • The logo Indianapolis Contemporary unveiled following its rebranding last year.

    Citing COVID-19 and Economic Hardship, Indianapolis Contemporary to Permanently Close

    The Indianapolis Contemporary (I/C), which was formerly the Indianapolis Museum of Contemporary Art, announced on Friday that it will permanently close after serving the community for a period of nineteen years. The decision was made following an internal review that “determined it was not economically feasible to continue operations.”

    “The challenges of operating a contemporary art nonprofit organization in Indianapolis have been considerable since our founding in 2001,” said board president Casey Cronin. “The impact of the coronavirus is certain to exacerbate economic hardships and reduce

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  • Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the vice president and prime minister of the United Arab Emirates and the ruler of Dubai, at the 2019 edition of Art Dubai. Courtesy of Art Dubai.

    UAE Buys $400,000 Worth of Art from Emirati Artists [Updated]

    After Art Dubai, a major revenue driver for galleries in the region, canceled its in-person events and moved the fair online, the United Arab Emirates announced that it purchased more than $400,000 worth of art produced by emerging and established Emirati artists for the UAE’s embassies. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ Office of Public and Cultural promoted the acquisition campaign as one of a number of new programs designed to shore up the local arts ecosystem.

    “With the cancelation of the many art events that were scheduled to take place this season, we wanted to send a message of solidarity

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  • Timothy R. Rodgers. Photo: Lynton Gardiner.

    Phoenix Art Museum Names Timothy R. Rodgers Director and CEO

    Phoenix Art Museum has appointed Timothy R. Rodgers as its next director and CEO. Rodgers comes to the institution from the Wolfsonian–Florida International University (FIU) in Miami, which he has led since 2015. He succeeds Amada Cruz, who departed in the summer of 2019 to head the Seattle Art Museum, and will assume his post after July 1.

    “Tim is a seasoned director and scholar whose leadership experience and ability to bring communities together made him the ideal candidate for Phoenix Art Museum,” said Mark Feldman, a cochair of the museum’s board of trustees. “His proven track record

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  • The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles. Photo: Wikipedia.

    US Cultural Sector Mobilizes to Provide Coronavirus Relief to Artists and Arts Institutions

    As millions of Americans attempt to cope with social and financial hardships during the coronavirus pandemic—more than ten million people filed for unemployment benefits over the last two weeks alone—philanthropists, foundations, and other organizations are stepping forward to help with COVID-19 relief efforts. While the global health crisis has impacted every facet of the job market, due to the cancelation of fairs, exhibitions, and other art-world events and the closure of galleries and museums, artists are especially vulnerable.

    The latest organizations to answer the collective call for aid

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  • David C. Driskell. Photo: DC Moore Gallery, New York.

    David C. Driskell (1931–2020)

    Scholar, curator, and artist David C. Driskell—an early expert on and proponent of African American art and art history whose work reshaped the American canon—has died at eighty-eight years old. The cause of death was double pneumonia due to complications arising from COVID-19, according to New York’s DC Moore Gallery, which represented him. “Two Centuries of Black American Art: 1750–1950,” an exhibition he organized at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art in 1976, is widely regarded as a landmark contribution to the study of black artists and their central role in American art history. In a

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  • Museum of Contemporary Art, Toronto. Photo: The City of Toronto.

    Kathleen Bartels to Lead Toronto’s Museum of Contemporary Art

    The Museum of Contemporary Art (MoCA) in Toronto has named Kathleen Bartels as its next executive director and CEO. Bartels most recently served as director of the Vancouver Art Gallery (VAG), which she helmed for eighteen years. During her tenure, she was responsible for tripling VAG’s annual operating budget, securing major gifts for the construction of its new building, growing its permanent collection by more than 60 percent, and establishing its Institute of Asian Art.

    “We are especially thankful that she is joining us now, as arts organizations across the world face the impacts of the

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  • Courtyard of the J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles. Photo: J. Paul Getty Trust.

    Getty Trust Launches $10 Million COVID-19 Relief Fund

    The J. Paul Getty Trust is setting up a $10 million COVID-19 relief fund to aid small and midsize arts organizations in Los Angeles County. The institution told the Los Angeles Times that it hastened to work on relief efforts in mid-March, days after it announced the closure of both the Getty Center and the Getty Villa because of the novel coronavirus, which has infected more than 9,800 people in California as of Thursday afternoon.

    According to Jim Cuno, the president and chief executive of the Getty Trust, plans for the fund were finalized and presented to the Getty’s board of directors on

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  • Scott Wilcox. Courtesy of the Yale Center for British Art.

    Scott Wilcox, Longtime Yale Center for British Art Curator, to Retire

    The Yale Center for British Art has announced that Scott Wilcox, its deputy director for collections, will retire in 2022 after a nearly four-decade tenure with the institution. Wilcox began working at the center in 1982 as an assistant curator of prints and drawings. He earned his Ph.D. in the history of art from Yale University three years later and would eventually be promoted to curator, chief curator of art collections, and senior curator of prints and drawings.

    “As I look back on nearly thirty-eight years at the center, I feel tremendously grateful that I’ve had such a long run in an

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