Miscellany. 07.10.12.

A cover image from Jim Linderman’s collection of VEA, a Mexican pinup magazine from the 1950s. (Dull Tool Dim Bulb.)

The MOCA Mess

Making everyone want to scream: MOCA. (Above, Gary Panter's 'Screamer,' on view last year.)

Good lord, this one is a doozy. L.A.’s MOCA has canned its best curator — Paul Schimmel, the dude who pretty much put the museum on the map — in a series of telenovela-esque machinations that should be accompanied by bad organ music. After seemingly being caught totally flat-footed on the PR front, the museum said the firing (er, ‘resignation’) was the board’s decision — even though curator firings are typically the work of the museum’s director (who in this case is former gallerist Jeffrey Deitch, who is remaining mum). Then, the one non-voting member of the board, who happens to be an incredibly powerful rich guy, writes a big op-ed about it, saying the museum just needs to be more populist. (‘Cuz what L.A. really needs is more barely-thought-out, mass market entertainment.) In the meantime, as Christopher Knight points out, the museum remains in the pooper financially and is now headed into the pooper aesthetically. The biggest loser in all of this? Us.


One comment

  1. alex

    It’s been fascinating to see the utter discombobulation of MOCA under Dietch (it was bad before, but it’s gotten nowhere since) while simultaneously watching Govan transform LACMA into something truly special. By the time Govan is done, LACMA will be one of the world’s great museums; when Dietch is done… who knows.