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Tuesday, 02 October 2012 21:37

Los Angeles’ MoCA Takes on YouTube

Los Angeles’ Museum of Contemporary Art moved into the digital realm on Monday with MOCAtv, the Museum’s YouTube channel devoted solely to contemporary art. In order to up the number of subscribers, MoCA will throw in a free three-month membership to the physical institution for anyone who subscribes to the channel between now and October 21st.

MOCAtv offers viewers a glimpse into the artistic process via six mini-channels including Artist Video Projects, The Artist’s Studio, Art in the Streets, Art + Music, MOCA U, and YouTube Curated by. MOCAtv debuted with 10 short videos from artists such as Alexis Smith, Mark Bradford, and Robbie Conal that explore the artists’ relationships to their work as well as footage of them in the midst of creating. The Museum also plans to air interviews connected to upcoming exhibitions.

Peppered with advertising content from YouTube’s parent company, Google, MoCA will receive a chunk of the channel’s advertising revenue after Google takes back what the Museum owes them for the development, programming, and operation of MoCAtv.

MoCA and its director, Jeffrey Deitch, have suffered many woes lately. Critics claim Deitch has destroyed the Museum’s integrity during his two-year reign, focusing more on glitz and celebrity than the art itself. This past June curator Paul Schimmel left the museum after 22 years and took all of the artists on MoCA’s board with him including Ed Ruscha, John Baldessari, and Barbara Kruger. While many suspected MoCA’s end was near, it doesn’t appear that Deitch or the Museum have given up just yet.

Published in News

The Museum of Contemporary Art Los Angeles isn’t in a party mood this year.

The downtown institution, rocked by the departures of board members, won’t hold a gala in 2012, according to an e-mail from the museum. Past events have included performances by Lady Gaga, Beck and Deborah Harry.

The annual soiree, usually held in November, has been the museum’s largest annual fundraiser, tax filings show. The 2011 gala, which raised $2.5 million, was directed by performance artist Marina Abramovic and featured live nude models rotating on tables, while guests including Pamela Anderson, Kirsten Dunst and Will Ferrell dined in white lab coats.

“This year’s MOCA gala is scheduled for the spring,” according to the e-mail from the museum. “Date to be announced shortly.”

Published in News
Sunday, 26 August 2012 20:00

A Lesson in Museum Finances

We’ve all read media reports of internal problems at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles — exhibitions canceled, staff fired, and artist trustees resigning in protest. Reporters on the West Coast are having a field day. These problems can probably be laid in part at the door of bad management. There is no doubt the current museum director, Jeffrey Deitch, and his predecessor, Jeremy Strick, made foolish decisions: Strick spent down the museum’s endowment without attending to fund-raising, and Deitch appears to be willing to degrade the program to boost attendance.

But there are other reasons why MOCA is struggling — reasons that, it seems to me, have as much to do with the nature of museum financing in this country as they do with the limitations of the individuals managing that institution.

Published in News
Thursday, 09 August 2012 14:05

MOCA in Trouble: Eli Broad Misses Payment

Billionaire philanthropist Eli Broad hasn’t made scheduled payments to the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles because the institution has $2.1 million in grants it hasn’t put toward exhibitions.

“Once our unspent exhibition funds have been used, we will make additional payments,” said Karen Denne, spokeswoman for the 79-year-old founder of KB Home (KBH), in an e-mail.

The missed payments come at a time when concerns over finances at the museum have resurfaced after four prominent artists quit MOCA’s board last month.

Published in News
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