Issue

3.19 / A Gift Horse

July 19 2012

Introduction

July 19, 2012. The power dynamic between high-level patronage and institutional directives rose to the surface when Eli Broad fired Paul Schimmel from the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles, and subsequently published an op-ed in the Los Angeles Times in which he claimed the need to "make MOCA a populist rather than an insular institution." In 2008, the Broad Foundation donated $30 million (including a $15 million challenge grant) to MOCA to keep its doors open after serious financial mishandling, attributable in part to staging blockbuster exhibitions that would draw the crowd size that Broad desires. He may be keeping the doors open, but who is invited? Consider instead the much more low-key generosity of John Held's globe-spanning mail art network or of Southern Machine Exposure Project, in which twenty patrons welcomed fifty plus artists and scores of curious visitors into their homes for single-night events. How can we scale up that sense of being at home with art? - PM

Features

dOCUMENTA (13), Manifesta 9, and the 7th Berlin Biennale

dOCUMENTA (13), Manifesta 9, and the 7th Berlin Biennale

By John Zarobell

The different strategies demonstrated by these three European biennials all had the same essential aim: to use cultural production as an agent to engage the present historical moment and to open it up for viewers to reflect on more deeply.

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Interview with John Held, Jr.

Interview with John Held, Jr.

By Liz Glass, Patricia Maloney

That's one of the reasons why I really enjoyed mail art, specifically in the '70s, because I was able to write all of these artists in Eastern Europe who had no other way of communicating. They had travel restrictions; they couldn't move around.

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