Marta Kuzma is the First Woman to be Named Dean of Yale School of Art

Marta Kuzma

In the almost 150 years since the Yale School of Art was established, a woman has never filled the position of dean—until now. President of Yale University Peter Salovey announced today that renowned curator Marta Kuzma will be the first female dean of the school. This news comes after last September's appointment of Deborah Berke as the first female dean of Yale’s School of Architecture.

“I am confident that she will develop a distinctive vision for the Yale School of Art,” Salovey said. “She has an appreciation for developing ‘courageous’ students, and recognizes the importance of new sensibilities and new contexts for the presentation of artists and art.”

The curator, writer, and academic is currently vice chancellor and rector of the Royal Institute of Art in Stockholm.

With over twenty-five years of curatorial experience in the international contemporary art world, Kuzma has served as director of the Office of Contemporary Art Norway, artistic director of the Washington Project for the Arts in Washington DC, and as the head of the international exhibitions program at the International Center of Photography in New York City. She was also founding director of the Soros Center for Contemporary Art in Kiev.

Kuzma will succeed revered critic and curator Robert Storr, who has served as the dean of the nation’s first art school since 2006. In an interview with the New York Times’ Robin Pogrebin, Storr said “ten years is enough. More than enough.”

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August 26, 2016

Google Returns Literary Blog Data to Dennis Cooper

Dennis Cooper

Nearly two months ago Google disabled writer Dennis Cooper’s literary blog—a fourteen-year-long project hosted by Blogger—and his Gmail account without warning. On Friday, Cooper announced that following negotiations between the media company and his lawyers, the content of his blog will be returned to him.

DC’s, the beloved literary platform where Cooper posted writings, research, images, as well as his GIF novels, will be relaunched in a new location on Monday, August 29. Cooper will not be able to upload all of the data from his former blog at once, since he will have to repost each item by hand, but he will gradually work on the project until the blog is completely restored.

Allegedly, Google deactivated the account on June 27 in response to an almost ten-year-old post, titled “Self-Portrait Day,” for which Cooper invited readers to send him content such as writings, images, videos, or sound files related to a specific theme. He would then curate the submissions and post an entry.

August 26, 2016

Galerie Forsblom Merges With Lars Bohman Gallery

Jan Hansen and Kaj Forsblom. Photo: Thomas Engström

Stockholm’s Lars Bohman Gallery and Galerie Forsblom of Helsinki have announced that they are merging. In January 2017, Lars Bohman will reopen its Stockholm location as Bohman Forsblom Gallery. Galerie Forsblom will continue operations under its current name.

“This is a great opportunity for our artists to widen their audiences, and for our collectors to be introduced to great new talents,” Jan Hansen of Lars Bohman Gallery said. The two galleries’ exhibitions have featured artists such as Ai Weiwei, Louise Bourgeois, Peter Halley, Jacob Hashimoto, Secundino Hernández, Chantal Joffe, Yayoi Kusama, Jonathan Lasker, Bjarne Melgaard, Tony Oursler, Donald Sultan, Joel Shapiro, and Not Vital among others.

In 2017, Galerie Forsblom will celebrate the fortieth anniversary of its founding and Lars Bohman Gallery will have been in business for thirty-five years.

August 26, 2016

Richard Prince Faces Fourth Lawsuit Over Copyright Infringement

Installation view of Richard Prince’s “New Portraits” series at Gagosian Gallery in 2014.

Appropriation artist Richard Prince is being sued for copyright infringement for the fourth time, Julia Halperin of the Art Newspaper reports.

California-based makeup artist and model Ashley Salazar filed a complaint in the US District Court of the Central District of California on June 15, after she discovered that Prince had used an image of her that she had posted on her Instagram account, @mynxiiwhite, in his “New Portraits” series. The works, which were first exhibited at Gagosian Gallery’s Madison Avenue location in 2014, feature Instagram photos of a range of women, including celebrities such as Kate Moss as well as images of female college students. Prince enlarges the images and adds his own mix of emojis and comments in the text below.

The image of Salazar, which depicted the model taking a selfie in a mirror with cat memes adorning the right edge of the frame, was sold at Frieze New York last year. According to The Guardian, Gagosian was selling the “New Portraits” series works for up to $100,000.

August 26, 2016

Arts Alliance Illinois Names Claire Rice as Executive Director

Claire Rice

Arts Alliance Illinois has announced that Claire Rice has been appointed as excutive director. She will take up the position on September 19.

“Claire is a collaborative and strategic leader with a deep understanding of the opportunities and challenges facing our sector here in Illinois,” Kassie Davis, board chair, said. “With Claire on board, we are confident that the Alliance will remain a strong and vocal advocate for the arts statewide.”

Rice has over eighteen years of professional experience working in the nonprofit and corporate sectors with a focus in arts education, community engagement, and cultural ecosystems. Since 2012, Rice has served as National Program Director of Harvard University’s Sustain Arts Project, a cultural data, research, and policy initiative.

August 26, 2016

New York City Commissions Artists to Paint Murals for Mental Health Awareness

Philadelphia’s Colorful Legacy by Keir Johnston and Ernel Martinez was created as part of the city’s Porch Light Project. Photo by Steve Weinik.

According to Carl Campanile of the New York Post, New York City has announced that it will use a $500,000 grant to hire artists to paint three murals to raise awareness about mental health. The artists will be asked to work with between thirty and forty people from the community who are involved in the numerous mental-health programs based in the city.

“The Health Department is launching its first Mural Arts Project using art as a public-health approach to address mental and behavioral health issues through artistic collaboration,” spokeswoman Carolina Rodriguez, said.

Funded by the state’s Office of Mental Health, the murals will be completed in three different neighborhoods. The proposal for the project cited the success of Philadelphia’s Porch Light Project, a collaborative initiative launched by the Philadelphia Mural Arts Program and the Philadelphia Department of Behavioral Health and Intellectual Disability Services. The program sought to transform neighborhoods with art while promoting the health of the community.

August 25, 2016

New York’s MoMA Promotes Ron Magliozzi to Curator in the Department of Film

Ron Magliozzi

New York’s Museum of Modern Art has announced that Ron Magliozzi, who joined the institution’s staff as supervisor of MoMA’s International Film Study Center in 1979, has been promoted to curator in the department of film.

Magliozzi, who specializes in collections research, development, and acquisitions, has served as associate curator since 2011. During his tenure at the MoMA, Magliozzi organized over fifty film series and gallery exhibitions, including “100 Years in Post-Production: Resurrecting a Lost Landmark of Black Film History,” 2015, a show organized around the discovery of the earliest surviving footage for a feature film with a black cast, Bert Williams’s Lime Kiln Club Field Day (1913). The previously unidentified, 101-year-old footage was selected by the Library of Congress for preservation in the National Film Registry and earned Magliozzi the 2014 Film Heritage Award from the National Society of Film Critics.

Rajendra Roy, chief curator of film said, “Ron Magliozzi is a visionary collections and exhibitions curator whose work has resulted in historic discoveries and some of the most popular exhibitions in MoMA's history. More than a million people have experienced his work through exhibitions such as ‘Pixar: 20 Years of Animation,’ ‘Tim Burton,’ and ‘Quay Brothers: The Pharmacist's Prescription for Lip-Reading Puppets.’” She added, “Ron has been an essential part of the department for many decades and it is thrilling to see him step into this new leadership role.”

August 25, 2016

McNay Art Museum Receives $1 Million Donation from G.A.C. Halff Foundation

Marie Halff with Bill and Liz Chiego.

McNay Art Museum has announced that the G.A.C. Halff Foundation has gifted the institution $1 million to establish an endowment for the acquisition of American art.

Marie Halff, former museum trustee and trustee of the G.A.C. Halff Foundation, announced the donation at an event honoring museum director William Chiego’s twenty-five years as leader of the institution. Chiego, the second director of the museum in its sixty-two year history, will step down from his position in September.

“My wife Liz and I are touched that she would make this gift announcement on behalf of herself and G.A.C Halff Foundation cotrustee, Tom Edson, at the tribute event in our honor,” Chiego said.

Rich Aste, former managing curator for arts of the Americas and Europe and curator of European art at the Brooklyn Museum, will succeed Chiego as third director.

August 25, 2016

Ai Weiwei Is Banned From the Yinchuan Biennale due to his “Political Sensitivity”

Ai Weiwei

Chinese artist Ai Weiwei said his work will not be included in the inaugural edition of the Yinchuan Biennale, which is scheduled to run from September 9 to December 18, because of his “political sensitivity.”

The artist, who was listed as one of the biennial’s participating artists earlier this year, wrote on Instagram, “Censorships in communist regions have been present since the existence of the power. Yet it still comes as a surprise to me for an ‘international art biennale,’ with over a hundred international artists and a foreign curator participating, to remove a single artist for the reason of defending human rights and freedom of speech. This shows what we face is a world, which is divided and segregated by ideology, and art is used merely as a decoration for political agendas in certain societies.”

Ai Weiwei claimed to receive a “vague letter” from Xie Suzhen, the art director of MoCA Yinchuan, stating that the decision was made by “higher officials.” Curated by Bose Krishnamachari, curator and cofounder of Kochi-Muziris Biennale, “For an Image, Faster Than Light” was supposed to exhibit work by Ai Weiwei alongside eighty international artists, including Anish Kapoor, Basir Mahmood, Danie Mellor, Liu Wei, Mao Tongqiang, Santiago Sierra, Song Dong, and Yee I-Lann. Krishnamachari said the biennial will explore spiritual and social consciousness, political narratives, and critical global engagement.

Ai Weiwei said, “China is trying to develop into a modern society without freedom of speech, but without political arguments involving higher aesthetic morals and philosophies, art is only served as a puppet of fake cultural efforts.” He added, “Therefore I am happy not to be a part of that effort as a political decoration. I believe the real effort we should make, is in defending freedom of speech for our humanism. Only by doing so, art is worth making.”

August 25, 2016

Parrish Art Museum Names Corinne Erni as Curator of Special Projects

Corinne Erni

The Parrish Art Museum has announced that Corinne Erni, who spearheaded the New Museum’s biennial IDEAS CITY and cofounder of ARTPORT_making waves, a curatorial platform on art and climate change, was appointed as curator of special projects. She will take up the position on September 1.

Director Terrie Sultan said that Erni’s “high level of expertise in engaging multiple and diverse audiences and fomenting interdisciplinary collaborations will enable the Parrish Museum to fully embrace its mission as a center for cultural engagement.”

Erni has twenty years of experience working as a museum professional. During her tenure at the New Museum, which she joined in 2010 as a project manager, Erni helped produce IDEAS CITY, a New York City–based biennial arts festival that has held global conferences in cities such as Istanbul and São Paulo. She established ARTPORT_making waves in 2006 and has served as codirector through 2016. The curatorial platform’s key projects include ARTPORT_Satellite—artist interventions with George Steinmann, Barthélémy Toguo, and Olafur Eliasson at the United Nations 2015 Climate Change Conference in Paris; “(Re-) Cycles of Paradise,” a traveling exhibition on gender and climate change at United Nations Climate Change Conferences in Copenhagen and Mexico; and Cool Stories for When the Planet Gets Hot, a biennial competition for short art videos on global warming with screenings of finalists’ editions and educational programs worldwide that began in 2009.