News

  • LA MoCA Director Philippe Vergne Resigns

    The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles announced today that director Philippe Vergne is stepping down. According to the Los Angeles Times, the institution’s board of trustees will not renew his contract, which expires in March 2019. The museum said that the decision was mutual.

    Vergne’s departure comes on the heels of the controversial firing of chief curator Helen Molesworth. While LA MoCA has been tight-lipped about the situation, board member Catherine Opie said that the reason for her termination was “undermining the museum.” The news had shocked the art world. Exhibitions dedicated to

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  • Cleveland Museum of Art Appoints Deputy Directors

    The Cleveland Museum of Art has announced the promotion of three members of its executive leadership team to the position of deputy director. Chief philanthropy officer John Easley, chief curator Heather Lemonedes, and head of public and academic engagement Cyra Levenson assumed their new roles on March 19.

    “John, Heather, and Cyra are outstanding and talented museum professionals, and I’m pleased to recognize the roles they play,” said William Griswold, director of the CMA. “As members of our executive management team, they’ve been major contributors to the development and implementation of our

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  • Shannon Ebner Named Chair of Pratt Institute’s Photography Department

    Artist Shannon Ebner has been named chair of the photography department at Pratt Institute in New York. Ebner comes from the University of Southern California’s Roski School of Art and Design, where she has served as a faculty member for the past ten years. She succeeds Stephen Hilger and will take up the post in September.

    Ebner is a Los Angeles-based interdisciplinary artist, who often addresses various modes of language, ranging from poetry to political rhetoric, through the lens of photography. This can be seen in her photographic series “Dead Democracy Letters” (2002–06), which addressed

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  • Michael Novak to Lead Paul Taylor Dance Foundation

    Modern dance pioneer Paul Taylor has revealed that Michael Novak, a member of the Paul Taylor Dance Company since 2010, will be his successor. According to Gia Kourlas of the New York Times, Taylor, who is eighty-seven years old, has been putting off naming the next person to helm the company for years.

    Taylor made the appointment after the company’s Lincoln Center season ended in March. “I thought he was just next in line,” Taylor remarked about handing the reins to Novak. “I’ve watched him for some time. He pays attention, and I know that he’s listening. I like him very much, and I think he’ll

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  • Gabriele and Werner Merzbacher Collection Heads to the Kunsthaus Zurich

    The Kunsthaus Zürich has announced that artworks from the Gabriele and Werner Merzbacher collection, a significant private collection of modern art, will be coming to the museum as part of a long-term loan agreement. A total of sixty-five works including paintings by Impressionists, Post-Impressionists, Fauvists, and German Expressionists will be exhibited at the museum over the course of the next twenty years.

    The collection was built from a small selection of paintings by Picasso, Van Gogh, Cézanne, Klee, Matisse, Renoir, and Jawlensky that were passed down from Gabrielle’s grandfather, Bernhard

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  • Sprawling Arts District to Open Near Beijing

    Plans were revealed today at the Venice Architecture Biennale for Valley XL, a $2.8 billion arts district that will spread across nearly one thousand acres in Heibei’s Xinglong Valley, according to the Art Newspaper. The development, in a Chinese province near Beijing, will be designed by Arquitectonica and comprise an “eco-city” including a modern and contemporary art museum, an education facility, an art park, artists’ studios, as well as commercial and residential areas. Construction is slated to begin later this year and will be funded by Guangdong Yuegang and Shenzhen XL Culture Development.

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  • Gerhard Richter Donates Artworks to Provide Housing for Germany's Homeless

    A donation of eighteen artworks by Gerhard Richter will help finance the purchase of one hundred housing units for the homeless across the North Rhine-Westphalia state of Germany, which includes Düsseldorf and Cologne. Three series of six abstract color offset prints—each belonging to the artist’s ongoing “Cage f.ff” series, begun in 2006—are on sale at fiftyfifty gallery in Düsseldorf for $493,080, and may also be bid on individually on the gallery’s website. The proceeds from the sale, predicted to reach $1.6 million, will go to the Housing First Fund, which launched its German branch

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  • Elizabeth Duggal to Join Guggenheim as Deputy Director and Chief Operating Officer

    The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and Foundation announced today that Elizabeth Duggal has been appointed as the institution’s deputy director and chief operating officer. In her new role, Duggal will oversee all operations of the Guggenheim’s museum in New York as well as administrative responsibilities for overseas affiliate museums and global projects. She succeeds Marc Steglitz, who is retiring in June after sixteen years in the position, and will assume her responsibilities on July 9.

    Duggal comes to the Guggenheim from the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden in Washington, DC. She served

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  • Berkshire Museum Falls Short of $55 Million Goal after First Round of Auctions

    On the morning of Wednesday, May 23, people with signs gathered outside of Sotheby’s New York in a last-ditch effort to prevent the controversial sale of art from the Berkshire Museum in Pittsfield, Massachusetts. They read: “Unethical deaccessions steal our children’s legacy,” “#artheist,” and “Is your museum next?”

    Despite the backlash over the institution’s decision to sell works from its collection in order to fund a renovation project and become financially stable, the museum entered four works into Sotheby’s American art auction, which kicked off at 10 AM. Three of the four works were sold,

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  • France Honors Collectors Thea Westreich Wagner and Ethan Wagner and Curator Charlotte Vignon

    Thea Westreich Wagner and Ethan Wagner, New York–based arts patrons who have donated more than 850 works by European and American artists to the Centre Pompidou in Paris and the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York, and Charlotte Vignon, curator of decorative arts at the Frick Collection, were honored by France this week for their contributions to French culture.

    In a ceremony held at the Cultural Services of the French Embassy in New York on Tuesday, May 22, the Wagners received the insignia of Officer of the Legion of Honor. Founded by Napoleon Bonaparte, the Legion of Honor is France’s

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  • Williams College Museum of Art Appoints Pamela Franks Director

    Williams College in Williamstown, Massachusetts, announced that Pamela Franks has been named the new director of its art museum. Franks is currently the senior deputy director and curator of modern and contemporary art at the Yale University Art Gallery. She will take up the post in September. 

    “Moving forward, it is exciting to think about the possibilities for growing the collection and cultivating WCMA as a vibrant hub of art and community with students at the center,” Franks said. “A vast potential for student engagement, along with faculty partnerships and museum collaborations, ideally

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  • Souls Grown Deep Foundation Expands Mission, Appoints New Board Chair

    The Souls Grown Deep Foundation, the nonprofit organization dedicated to raising the profile of African American artists from the southern United States, has announced that it is expanding its mission. In addition to promoting African American artists, the foundation will now also work to improve the socio-economic conditions of the communities represented in its collection.

    Mary Margaret Pettway, the foundation’s new board chair, will oversee the foundation’s new three-year strategic plan. Born and raised in Gee’s Bend, Alabama, Pettway is a third-generation quilter. She is a member of the Gee’s

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