Judith H. Dobrzynski on Culture

Common Sense From Gary Vikan

Maybe retirement, if that’s what Gary Vikan–former head of the Walters Art Museum–had entered, loosens inhibitions. Vikan’s editorial in today’s Wall Street Journal may… More ›

Tom Krens: At It Again?

Tom Krens, the museum consultant formerly known as the director of the Guggenheim Foundation and booster of multi-branch museums, has always lived by the philosophy of “Go Big or Go Home.”

“Softening” The Museum Brand

I couldn’t find a press release on the museum website about this, but a couple of newspapers recently reported that the Minneapolis Institute of Arts is changing its name. And I did find, on the… More ›

A Museum Innovation With Legs–And Twists

Way back in September 2010, I applauded an innovative initiative by the Detroit Institute of Arts, but noted that I thought more could be made of it. Now, I learn these five years later, more has been… More ›

On The Road: The Maine Art Museum Trail

If you ever have the opportunity, drive the Maine Art Museum Trail. Did you even know there was a MAMT? Or that it includes eight institutions around the state, from the Ogunquit Museum of American… More ›

Fun And Games In Art Museums

There is absolutely no point in saying something isn’t offensive if you’re not a member of the offended class, but let me say right off that I don’t quite understand the uproar over… More ›

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When Is A Sanction Not A Sanction?

The answer, it seems, is when one member of the sanctioning organization decides to ignore the punishment meted out to an offending member.

“Artless” In America: Why?

What irony. And what a contradiction. Here we are in an era when paintings and sculpture regularly make national headlines and television newscasts for selling at sky-high prices and, at the same… More ›

The Broad Museum Answers Back

Several days ago, I asked here if any other art museums in the U.S. were spending as much money buying art as the Crystal Bridges Museum. I had added up the announced purchases over the past year or… More ›

Museum Pictures To Warm Your Hearts

In the United States, many museum-goers I know are perturbed by the hordes of school children that sometimes descend on museum galleries, talking loudly, paying no attention to others trying to enjoy… More ›

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Something Good To Say About MoMA

You hear so much about museums seeking out young audiences, the audiences of the future. It’s tiresome, actually, and that quest ignores another giant portion of the country’s… More ›

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The Shocking Cooper Hewitt, Part Two

Aside from the maltreatment of its beautiful historic building, which I wrote about here nearly three weeks ago, something else is deeply wrong with the new incarnation of the Cooper Hewitt National… More ›

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The Dangers Of Audience Gimmicks

What was that song from Gypsy–“You gotta have a gimmick,” right? Sadly some museums are trying gimmicks to lure people into their galleries and I fear this will all end badly.

First Thoughts On the New Whitney

After visiting the new Whitney Museum twice, for a total of about five hours, I’ve come to some tentative conclusions–first and foremost, that it’s a successful building for art,… More ›

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The Shocking Cooper Hewitt

Many curtain-raisers for and reviews of the newly renovated and reconceived Cooper Hewitt National Design Museum have focused on its use of technology to make the museum interactive, participatory and… More ›