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Tristram Hunt floats idea of hotel tax for overseas tourists to fund UK museums

Plus: Yasufumi Nakamori appointed Tate’s senior curator of international art | Steven Parissien steps down as director of Compton Verney Art Gallery | and Nancy Blomberg (1946–2018)

10 September 2018

Our daily round-up of news from the art world

Tristram Hunt floats idea of overseas tourists paying hotel tax to fund UK museums | The director of the V&A has suggested the idea of a hotel tax on overseas tourists to help keep national museums free and fund local authority museums, reports The Telegraph. Debating the issue with Frances Morris, director of Tate Modern, and Tonya Nelson of UCL at the Festival of Ideas at the Royal Academy of Arts in London, Hunt admitted that arguing for the reintroduction of national museum charges in 2011, when he was a MP, had been a mistake. Hunt pointed out the double standard that sees British tourists paying hotel taxes, in cities such as New York and Rome, to support culture, compared to the UK’s free museum entry for all tourists. Speaking on behalf of the V&A, which he joined last year, he said ‘We have had it bad, but local authority museums have been absolutely smashed over the last few years.’

Yasufumi Nakamori appointed Tate’s senior curator of international art | Tate Modern has announced that Dr Yasufumi Nakamori will become its senior curator of international art (photography), a position previously held by Simon Baker. Nakamori is currently head of the photography department and new media at the Minneapolis Institute of Art (Mia). Before that he served as curator of photography at the Museum of Fine Arts Houston for eight years, where he organised notable exhibitions on the history of Japanese art, architecture and photography, featuring artists and architects such as Ishimoto Yasuhiro and Tange Kenzo. 

Steven Parissien steps down as Director of Compton Verney Art Gallery | Compton Verney Art Gallery and Park in Warwickshire, UK has announced that Steven Parissien is leaving the institution to take up a post in Canada. During his 10-year tenure, Parissien curated exhibitions featuring British artists such as Turner and Constable, and was responsible for new building and conservation, developing the educational programme, widening the gallery’s audience and doubling visitor numbers. The national art gallery is a Grade I-listed Georgian mansion among 120 acres of park landscaped by Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown.

Nancy Blomberg (1946–2018) | Nancy Blomberg, the chief curator of the Denver Art Museum has died at the age of 72, reports Art News. Blomberg, who had worked at the museum for 28 years was also the Andrew W. Mellon Curator of Native Arts, curating exhibitions such as ‘Red, White and Bold: Masterworks of Navajo Design, 1840–1870’ and ‘Why We Dance: American Indian Art in Motion, both shows that significantly boosted the museum’s reputation in the field of Native American art. In collaboration with Blomberg’s husband, Art Blomberg, the museum will launch the Nancy Blomberg Acquisitions Fund for Native American Art.

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