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Does Cincinnati Art Museum Need A New Director?

Aaron Betsky took over as director of the Cincinnati Art Museum, its eighth, in 2006. Is he now headed out the door?

betsky_aaron_jan07Some people think so. Betsky was formerly director of the Netherlands Architecture Institute in Rotterdam, an important center for the architects, and now it seems that he is a finalist for the post of dean of the College of Architecture, Design and the Arts at the University of Illinois, Chicago. It’s a better fit, really. Betsky is a graduate of the Yale School of Architecture, and from afar architecture has always seemed his biggest interest.

A few more qualifications, according to the museum’s bio of him: “He has held the Eero Saarinen chair in architecture at the University of Michigan and has been a visiting professor at Columbia University, California College of Arts, School of Architecture in Houston, and Southern California Institute of Santa Monica. He is an honorary member of the British Institute of Architects (2004) and has won an award from the American Institute of Architects (2001). From 1985 to 1987, he worked with Frank O. Gehry Associates, Inc.”

The news of his possible departure was disclosed in yesterday’s Cincinnati Enquirer, which had this passage:

Reached today at Cincinnati Art Museum, Betsky said he didn’t want to comment, other than, “They contacted me about this possibility and it seemed interesting enough to speak to them. I still have a lot of work to do here.”

Sounds to me as if he wants the new post.

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