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Report urges increased UK government funding to museums

Plus: Investigation criticises conduct of Queens Museum ex-director | Aaron I. Fleischman endows curatorial position at the Met | Jef Geys (1934–2018) | and Hirshhorn postpones projection following Florida shooting

15 February 2018

Our daily round-up of news from the art world

Report urges increased UK government funding to museums | Following the Mendoza review of the museums sector in England, published in November 2017, a report entitled ‘Why Collect?’ led by Sir David Cannadine and commissioned by the Art Fund together with the Wolfson Foundation has called for a boost in public funding to the sector. For museums and galleries hoping to add to their collections, the report – launched today at Tate Modern – has found, ‘stratospheric’ prices have made open market acquisitions all but unachievable. Shortfalls in public funding over the past decade had not been matched by income from the Heritage Lottery Fund or private sources, it added. Cannadine called for increased government spending to museums, commenting that ‘the pressures and expectations placed on museums and galleries by both national and local government  […] have never been greater’.

Investigation criticises conduct of Queens Museum ex-director | A report on an independent investigation into the conduct of former Queens Museum director Laura Raicovich and her deputy, David Strauss, has been released. The report states that, as the result of various actions demonstrating that Raicovich and Strauss ‘knowingly misled’ the institution’s board, the two former staff members were given the opportunity to resign from their positions. Speaking to ArtNet, Raicovich, who resigned last month, has defended her actions, stating that she ‘did not mislead the board’.

Aaron I. Fleischman endows curatorial position at the Met | Collector and businessman Aaron I. Fleischman has endowed a curatorial position in the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s modern and contemporary department. The position will be filled by Ian Alteveer, who has worked at the institution for more than a decade.

Jef Geys (1934–2018) | Belgian conceptual artist Jef Geys has died at the age of 83, reports Artforum. Considered one of the most important Belgian artists of the post-war era, Geys studied at the Antwerp Arts Academy before settling into a long teaching career. Through his work across media Geys frequently sought to challenge latent power structures, eventually garnering sufficient renown to represent Belgium at international exhibitions including the Bienal de São Paulo (1991) and the Venice Biennale (2009).

Hirshhorn postpones Krzysztof Wodiczko projection following Florida shooting | A video installation by Polish artist Krzysztof Wodiczko featuring an image of a gun, projected onto the façade of the Hirshhorn in Washington, D.C. as part of an exhibition that opened at the museum on Tuesday, has been temporarily removed following yesterday’s news of a shooting at a school in Florida that has killed at least 17 people. Out of sensitivity to the shooting’s victims, the institution and artist have decided that the projection onto the building’s façade will be postponed until a later date, while footage of the work will remain on view in the museum lobby.

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