an blog | AJBlog Central | Contact me

The Rose Closes (for now)


Where is that Rose Museum arrow (above) pointing?

Geoff Edgers reports in today’s Boston Globe:

Yesterday marked the closing of the
Rose’s temporary exhibitions on 20th-century abstract expressionist
Hans Hofmann and a second show, “Saints & Sinners.” The day had
special significance because on July 22, when the museum’s doors
reopen, the Rose will probably not have a proper director or curator.

That’s the result of the university’s still-developing plans to change the Rose’s mission and sell some of its art.

What happens going forward is anyone’s guess. Michael Rush, whose directorship at the museum ends June 30, told Edgers:

The Rose, as we have known it, is closing…

…or at least the Rose as HE has known it is finished. My hope that a new director, arriving in Watham without the baggage of an acrimonious relationship with the administration, will find a way to preserve the Rose’s collection and its status as a full-functioning museum, while making a more effective effort to communicate its necessity and importance to Brandeis officials, the broader university community and the general public.

The key to this will be making sure that these constituents appreciate the museum’s important role as an integral part of the university’s core mission—a case that can best be made not by words but by finding ways to better integrate the Rose’s riches into the fabric of student, faculty and community life—through significant new programs and more vigorous outreach. That will take time and a lot of persuasive diplomacy…not to mention a willingness by the university to appoint someone capable of accomplishing that task.

One can only hope that Brandeis President Jehuda Reinharz and his supporters have come to recognize that the potential costs to the university’s reputation among donors and the broader educational and cultural communities are not worth the financial benefits that might accrue from selling off valuable educational assets.

an ArtsJournal blog