an blog | AJBlog Central | Contact me | Advertise

A Recipe For Trouble At New York City Museum

When more than a half dozen people shake their heads in disbelief at a museum announcement, and make a point of asking me what I think, I’d say it was time to weigh in publicly. The announcement that is raising questions came last Tuesday from the Museum of the City of New York. The board […]

Defending Melissa Chiu…UPDATED

When the Hirshhorn Museum, which has been led for the last year by Melissa Chiu, late of the Asia Society Museum, announced that its 40th anniversary gala would be held in New York, not in Washington, D.C., I too raised my eyebrows. That is a slap in the face to the hometown crowd, I thought. I have […]

Flash: The Detroit Institute of Arts Names New Director

They have replaced Graham Beal as director of the Detroit Institute of Arts, and it’s an inside job. Salvador Salort-Pons, the current curator of European paintings a the DIA, plus–since 2013–director of collection strategies and information, won the post. Not an easy job ahead of him, but I do think it was wise for the trustees […]

By The Numbers, Good Museum News in Virginia

Earlier this week, when I received an email from the American Folk Art Museum, I thought it was doing well–getting back on its feet after a disastrous over-expansion. Anne-Imelda Radice, the director, wrote that: We closed the fiscal year with great news: 150,018 visitors came through our doors, experiencing exhibitions, programs, events, the shop, and […]

Common Sense From Gary Vikan

Maybe retirement, if that’s what Gary Vikan–former head of the Walters Art Museum–had entered, loosens inhibitions. Vikan’s editorial in today’s Wall Street Journal may not have been written if he still had the job. It’s headlined The Case for Buying Antiquities to Save Them.  It’s about the unrelenting damage being perpetrated by ISIS, of course. […]

Tom Krens: At It Again?

Tom Krens, the museum consultant formerly known as the director of the Guggenheim Foundation and booster of multi-branch museums, has always lived by the philosophy of “Go Big or Go Home.” Now, he is at it again. Last week, the Berkshire Eagle reported that Krens–who first proposed the creation of Mass MoCA in North Adams, […]

“Artless” In America: Why, Oh Why?

What irony. And what a contradiction. Here we are in an era when paintings and sculpture regularly make national headlines and television newscasts for selling at sky-high prices and, at the same time, we are know-nothings about art. And we care less. The latter half of that contradiction was asserted several days ago by Michael […]

The Brooklyn, The Whitney…Oh My! (Or, While I Was Away…)

I didn’t actually post here at RCA that I would be away for about a week around the Memorial Day weekend, so I am sure that it looked as if I was perhaps speechless last week when major announcements came out from the Brooklyn Museum* and the Whitney Museum. I was simply AWOL–in Spain, actually, […]

Something Good To Say About MoMA

You hear so much about museums seeking out young audiences, the audiences of the future. It’s tiresome, actually, and that quest ignores another giant portion of the country’s population–seniors. Seniors make up nearly 15 percent of the U.S. population and that’s nothing to ignore. So I was glad to learn recently of a new program […]

Breaking Now: The MFA Names A New Director

And it’s Matthew Teitelbaum, currently director of the Art Gallery of Ontario. If you read yesterday’s post here, you’ll know that’s one down–of many museum director jobs open along the East coast–and many more to come. In fact, I hear that another I mentioned yesterday will be announcing in the next week, or ten days. Meanwhile, […]

an ArtsJournal blog