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The Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art has concluded its six-month search for a director to replace Jeffrey Deitch, who stepped down last summer. On January 15, the institution announced that it had selected Philippe Vergne, director of the Dia Art Foundation in New York, for the role.

French-born Vergne is a veteran curator and has an extensive background in museum administration both in the U.S. and in Europe. He served as the director of the Musee d’Art Contemporain in Marseille from 1994 to 1997 and in 2005, he was named  deputy director and chief curator of the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis. Vergne has been at the helm of the Dia Art Foundation since 2008.

The Museum of Contemporary Art is emerging from a tumultuous period, largely caused by Deitch’s tenure at the institution. Deitch was plagued by criticism after he fired longtime chief curator Paul Schimmel in 2012. Following Schimmel’s departure, John Baldessari, Ed Ruscha, Catherine Opie and Barbara Kruger resigned from the museum’s board, leaving it void of artist representation. All four artists were on the director search committee. The museum released a statement saying that Baldessari, Ruscha, Opie and Kruger all expressed enthusiasm for the hire.

Vergne’s appointment comes on the heels of the museum’s announcement that it had reached its goal of a $100 million endowment, most of which was raised in the past year.

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