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New Huffington Post Arts Blogger: CultureGrrl

My Huffington blogger headshot
(Where’s Jill Krementz when I really need her?)

Don’t worry, art-lings. You will still find CultureGrrl in the same place and in the same irreverent form, on ArtsJournal. I’m just branching out.

Some of you are already aware that the Huffington Post has recently added an arts page to its mix. They have invited me to be one of their bloggers, repurposing some of my CultureGrrl musings for a broader audience.

My first foray as a Huffington blogger is a slightly reworked post on the dilemmas facing BP-sponsored art museums, adapted from this CultureGrrl post. If you want to read my commentary hot off my keyboard, please continue clicking CultureGrrl, where stories will appear first.

I may occasionally send original pieces directly to Huffington. It that happens, I’ll immediately give you the link on CultureGrrl.

Speaking of the rewards and pitfalls of corporate art support, the press packet for the Museum of Modern Art’s stringently austere and politically preoccupied new installation of contemporary art from its permanent collection included the latest example of what I called (in my BP post) “some cringe-worthy exhibition press materials that…extol at
length the virtues of the supporters’ business activities, unacceptably
crossing the line from grateful acknowledgement to commercial

A glossy two-sided promo flyer inserted in the press materials by MoMA’s sponsor, BNY Mellon, informs us that the financial services company is “the global leader in asset management and securities servicing,” with “$22.4 trillion in assets under custody and administration, $1.1 trillion in assets under management; service $11.8 trillion in outstanding debt; process $1.5 trillion in global payments daily.”

We high-net worth art critics were also fascinated to learn that BNY Mellon has “locations across 6 continents.” (What, they missed Antarctica?)

The better way would have been to stick with the flyer’s first two paragraphs, in which the BNY Mellon officials said they felt “honored” to work with MoMA and other cultural institutions and that their “unique collaborative partnership with MoMA enables us to help others understand and enjoy the ever-changing visual arts of our time.” The self-promotional part should have been limited to providing a website address for further information about the company.

I doubt, though, that there’s any museum in the U.S. that would deprive sponsors of the chance to blow their corporate horns in conjunction with their munificent gifts. That’s become standard operating procedure in snaring much needed support. The rationale, I suppose, is it’s a small price to pay for what the sponsors are paying.

Speaking of sponsorship, it you think my new affiliation with Huffington diminishes my need for you to activate my
“Donate” button in the middle column, please think again. Blogging on Huffington
(as on ArtsJournal) is pro bono. Do I hope that my blogging on a
high-profile mega-site might lead to a high-profile paid pundit gig?

In the meantime, though, my warm thanks go out to CultureGrrl
Donors 137 and 138
, from Columbus, OH, and Newark, DE (both of
whom, as it happened, clicked my button today, before the
posting of my first Huff puff!).

an ArtsJournal blog