Allan Kozinn reports in the New York Times that writer Martin Filler acknowledged an error in a critical piece he wrote for the New York Review of Books that touched on Zaha Hadid’s stance toward workers’ rights, after the star architect filed a libel lawsuit in Manhattan last week.
In his review of Why We Build: Power and Desire in Architecture (2014) by Rowan Moore, Filler mentioned that Hadid “has unashamedly disavowed any responsibility, let alone concern,” for the construction workers who’ve died while building Al Wakrah stadium, Qatar—a project helmed by the architect. In that context, he published a quote from Hadid in The Guardian, in which she said, “I have nothing to do with the workers . . . . It's not my duty as an architect to look at it.” Since the suit, Filler has issued a note clarifying that Hadid went on record with the quote before construction began, and that there have been no worker deaths on the Al Wakrah project, which is scheduled to start in 2015.
Thomas Welsh has been appointed director of performing arts at the Cleveland Museum of Art. Welsh joined the institution in 2007 and previously acted as the associate director of music; he also served as the Ohio City Stages program director. Massoud Saidpour, the former director of performing arts, resigned in February. According to Zachary Lewis of the Plain Dealer, Welsh believes that the museum’s programming in this department will have a transformative effect on the local community: “I'm bullish on the museum and on Cleveland. I can't think of another place where the museum plays such a vital role across the entire artistic life of the city.”
Jodi Throckmorton has been named curator of contemporary art at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, effective October 27. Throckmorton is currently the curator of modern and contemporary art at the Ulrich Museum of Art at Wichita State University, a role she assumed in 2013. Before that, she worked as associate curator at the San Jose Museum of Art for five years.
Said director Harry Philbrick: “I am delighted that Jodi will be joining PAFA. Her skill as a curator, as well as passion and enthusiasm, became clear when I had the pleasure of working with her on PAFA's Eric Fischl exhibition in 2012. Jodi's essay in PAFA's ”Female Gaze“ exhibition catalogue is evidence of her superb skills as a writer, as well as her outstanding scholarship.”
Three African sulcata tortoises, part of the exhibition “Moving Ghost Town” by Cai Guo-Qiang at the Aspen Art Museum, have been relocated to a warmer climate to ensure their well being, reports Curtis Wackerle of the Aspen Daily News. The tortoises had been on display in an 800-square-foot pen on the museum’s roof deck with iPads attached to their shells, which played footage of local ghost towns. The exhibit stirred controversy, and animal rights activists called it inhumane and unethical. A petition was signed by more than 18,000 people demanding the museum remove the iPads from the tortoises' shells. After a veterinarian in charge of their care determined that weather conditions were too cold and wet to ensure their well being, the museum agreed to move them to a warmer climate a month ahead of schedule.
Andrew Russeth at Artnews reported that Annette Schönholzer, who is currently the director of new initiatives for Art Basel, will be leaving at the end of the month but will continue to collaborate with the fair's organizers in the future. She had started that post in 2012 when the fair reorganized its leadership, with Marc Spiegler becoming director of the three fairs in Basel, Miami Beach, and Hong Kong.
In an article by Roger McCredie in the Asheville Tribune, the former Asheville mayor and city manager Ken Michalove claims that the museum is headed towards bankruptcy unless it improves fundraising and stops adjusting financial reports in order to qualify for city and county money. In putting together a report of the institution’s finances based on its most recent tax return, Michalove has concluded that “raising $24 million, and likely a great deal more, is critical to AAM to avoid bankruptcy.” That amount was the prior stated goal of the museum’s capital fundraising drive circa 1996.
Maura Judkis at the Washington Post reports that after the merger of the Corcoran Gallery with the National Gallery of Art and George Washington University, which was approved by a Superior Court judge last Monday, the museum will no longer charge admission. The Corcoran’s new hours will be Wednesday through Sunday, 10AM to 5PM.
The Indian artist Nalini Malani has been awarded the St. Moritz Art Masters Lifetime Achievement Award, which is given annually to an artist for his or her outstanding lifetime achievement. The award was created by Cartier in 2008 to celebrate new developments in contemporary arts. Past recipients have included Ai Weiwei, Oscar Niemeyer, and Ilya and Emilia Kabakov. Malani was born in 1946 in Karachi in 1947, trained as a painter at the Sir Jamsetjee Jeejebhoy School of Art in Mumbai, and became known in India for work with feminist issues as well as for her theater and installation projects.
Rozalia Jovanovic reports on Artnet that Mass MoCA has been allocated a grant by Massachusetts governor Deval Patrick, who approved a capital facilities bond bill including $25.4 million in state funding for a renovation of the museum’s twenty-six-building campus and an expansion of exhibition space. The expansion will add on 120,000 square feet, almost doubling the museum's capacity for exhibitions. The noncollecting institution broke its attendance record last year with 162,000 visitors and hopes an expansion will result in even more visitors and will also boost the local economy in North Adams, Massachusetts, where the museum is located.