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Tuesday 04.30.19

« Weekend Picks | Main | Early May links »

Ending April Institutional Links

Whether or not it is fair, most major art institutions are caught in a crossfire these days, whether its forming a line to march in the woke parade, a sense that the 1% has unfairly rigged things too well or artwashing. Things are tense or at least sense of unsettled tension seems to background everything. I'm nearly done going through my archives for my 20 years of being in Portland post. It is about a thousand times more difficult writing about oneself, especially when you are easily bored with yourself like I am. So to distract you with more important things here are some links:

It is your last week to catch The Map is not the Territory at PAM and Grace Kook Anderson spoke to KBOO (isnt it nice to have a curator who speaks very well again at PAM? Too many curators simply perform a certain ingratiating doubletalk). That said Art in America had some problems with the show, mostly because they looked at it through a sort of lens on the indigenous. AiA made some good points but I believe it is conceived to be broader than that. I saw similar problems with The Map Is Not The Territory but attributed them to some of the hang, which for a show about crossing boundaries and communication seemed too bounded by museum conventions and layout problems. It is a difficult step in the right direction. Most group shows are not very satisfying and at this time a show about dissatisfaction might be the only thing that will feel right?

Artists, 50 of whom are in the Whitney Biennial are demanding Whitney Chairman's ouster.

The banana becomes the sigil of institutional critique in Poland.

Jerry Saltz on the upcoming Rugoff curated Venice Biennale. Look, uncertainty is the subject of the age and art as distracting amusement or a series of humblebrag artwashing declarations doesnt really cut it, and hasn't for a long time.

As expected Catlin Gabel has bought OCAC and it is over. Ill have more on this in my Portlandageddon article (coming soon, all things in the right time) but all this was needless and nobody buys the agitprop that this could not be avoided and nobody is to blame. Blame = a weak board that was out of their depth and should have stepped down instead of pursuing a policy that put all eggs into merging with another school. Merging could not happen because all tuition based revenue models of higher education are broken... I saw this immediately. OCAC had a lack of vision by creating a leadership gap which ground fundraising momentum to zero, right when they needed it. This is sad especially considering how much most of the community wanted it saved. The situation required real leadership (board and some faculty) that was not inherently fatalistic. Where was the oversight and the understanding that they were in way over their heads? I dont blame Catlin Gabel, they have a super competent board and its a hard lesson that Portland institutions continue to not learn about endowments and stewarding institutional momentum.

Posted by Jeff Jahn on April 30, 2019 at 10:08 | Comments (0)


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