MOCA changes tune, will name a chief curator

Bloomberg News is moving a story by Chris Palmeri saying that the Museum of Contemporary Art has reversed an earlier decision and will hire a new chief curator. “In the past weeks we have witnessed considerable media attention and criticism directed at MOCA and its leadership, particularly at our director,” the MOCA board’s executive committee wrote in a letter to other trustees. Hiring a new chief curator “will enable us to continue to strengthen this institution with the resources necessary for the director to succeed.”

Says Bloomberg News:

Tensions at the museum escalated after MOCA announced the resignation of 22-year-veteran curator [Paul] Schimmel on June 29. Artist board members John Baldessari, Barbara Kruger, Catherine Opie and Ed Ruscha announced they were quitting, citing disappointment with the museum’s direction.

Last weekend, the LA Times ran a story in which embattled MOCA chief Jeffrey Deitch defended the seriousness of his choices in exhibitions. His catering to celebrity taste and culture has brought him in for some heated criticism.

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