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Alan Jones steps down temporarily as president of RIBA

31 March 2020

Our daily round-up of news from the art world

Alan Jones steps down temporarily as president of RIBA | Alan Jones, the president of the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA), is to temporarily step down from his position. In an email sent to RIBA council members this morning (31 March), Jones said that he needed to ‘take some time out from my duties as president’, and asked for privacy; the reasons behind the decision have not been provided, but staff at RIBA have been told that Jones will be uncontactable for four to six weeks.

Italy extends lockdown until 12 April | Museums and galleries in Italy will remain closed until at least 12 April, after the Italian government extended its lockdown of the country until Easter Sunday. The lockdown, which was put in place earlier this month to halt the spread of coronavirus, had previously been scheduled to end on Friday (3 April).

Metropolitan Museum of Art to pay staff until 2 May | The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, has announced that it will extend wage payments for its 2,200 employees until 2 May, having previously committed to payments until 4 April. The museum has been closed since 13 March; a letter of 18 March to department heads at the museum, signed by chief executive Daniel H. Weiss and president Max Hollein, anticipated closure until July and losses of around $100m.

Suellen Rocca (1943–2020) | The artist Suellen Rocca has died at the age of 76. A founding member of the Hairy Who collective in 1966, Rocca’s irreverent, comic-book inspired work contributed to Chicago counterculture in the late ’60s; in her work of the 1980s onwards, Rocca produced expressionist drawings influenced by Surrealist automatism. In her later career, Rocca was a faculty member in the art department of Elmhurst College, as well as the curator and director of exhibitions at Elmhurst’s art gallery.