Following on the heels of my earlier post about the troubled state of our local museums comes this opinion piece penned by Mat Gleason, publisher of the LA-based international art-industry publication Coagula.
He’s got some choice words–and, in his own scathing style, minces none–about MOCA‘s crisis, which Mike Boehm of the LA Times explains:“Los Angeles’ prestigious but chronically underfunded Museum of Contemporary Art has fallen into crisis. Museum Director Jeremy Strick said MOCA is seeking large cash infusions from donors, and this week he did not rule out the possibility of merging with another institution or sharing its collection of almost 6,000 artworks.”
In an industry glutted with bullshit, Gleason’s incisive writing (original post is here) is a refreshing dose of plain talk, and he doesn’t shrink from pointing fingers: “Look, this is terrible and no matter what can be done to resolve it, we have to step gingerly because we could easily lose it all if the next few months are not handled with delicate and deliberate measures.
Oh, wait, I said WE. Ooops, there I go again, clinging to the myth that this is OUR museum. The Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art is a cultural country club masquerading as a public institution. There is zero transparency in the way this institution has been run. So many of its recent art shows have been little more than collaborations with art dealers that it cannot reasonably be assumed that this institution has been run to do anything but financially benefit friends and insiders.
Since MOCA is a California non-profit educational institution, the State of California must immediately look into how this corporation has allocated its money. If this place is broke, one reason might be envelopes of cash. The integrity of this institution is at question. Its Board of Trustees have obviously looked to the Museum cabal of Jeremy Strick and Paul Schimmel as a two-headed Jim Jones, drinking the Murakami and Kippenberger kool-aid while art dealers were too damn nearby to not make a buck on the back of this museum.”
Click through for more.
Continue reading Mat Gleason: MOCA’s Murakami Kool-Aid, 5-Minute Ceiling, & Fat Envelopes!