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Polish government wins key ruling over Gdansk’s Second World War museum

Plus: North Carolina’s Ackland Art Museum receives $25 million gift | Susan Krane to step down as director of San Jose Museum of Art | and Stephanie Stebich named director of Smithsonian American Art Museum

25 January 2017

Our daily round-up of news from the art world

Court ruling over Gdansk’s Museum of the Second World War finds in favour of Polish government | Warsaw’s Supreme Administrative Court has ruled in favour of Poland’s nationalist government in a long-running dispute over Gdansk’s Museum of the Second World War. The museum, which is due to have its official opening at the end of February, was initially intended to present the 1939–45 war in a global context. According to the BBC, the court’s ruling will allow the government to reshape the museum’s permanent exhibition into a display more focused on Poland’s experience of the conflict. For more on the story, see here.

North Carolina’s Ackland Art Museum receives $25 million gift | The University of North Carolina’s Ackland Art Museum has received seven Rembrandt drawings as part of a gift of art and financial support with an estimated total value of $25 million. The donation comes courtesy of retired orthodontist and former Harvard professor Sheldon Peck and his wife Leena. According to the New York Times, it includes some 140 works on paper and an $8 million endowment to support the development of the museum. ‘It’s certainly the most generous and largest gift the Ackland has ever received; it’s just mind-blowing,’ said director Katie Ziglar.

Susan Krane to step down as director of San Jose Museum of Art | Susan Krane has announced that she is to step down as director of the San Jose Museum of Art, reports ARTNews. Krane has substantially expanded the museum’s collection and public programming since joining in 2008, as well as introducing new financial plans. Deputy director of curatorial affairs Susan Sayre Batton will act as interim director until a replacement is appointed.

Stephanie Stebich named director of Smithsonian American Art Museum | Washington DC’s Smithsonian American Art Museum has appointed Stephanie Stebich as its next director, succeeding Betsy Broun, who retired last year after nearly three decades in the role. Stebich, who is currently director of the Tacoma Art Museum, will take up the post on 3 April.

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