Sunday, August 7, 2011

James Cuno wraps up first week as Getty director

Yesterday the Los Angeles Times published an article reflecting on James Cuno at the end of his first week as the Getty Trust's president and CEO. The interview is noticeably focused on acquisitions. I was particularly interested in the characteristics Cuno is looking for as he hires a new museum director; he says that his candidate should have "an appetite for risk in acquiring extraordinary works of art". What kind of risk, exactly? That's a rather sketchy thing to say considering the Getty is still rinsing the bad taste in its mouth from past risk-taking curators Jiri Frel and Marion True. I understand that many are hopeful that Cuno will do well for the Getty, but I still find him to be a very strange choice of director after all the Getty has suffered. Albeit, this is only one interview, but I agree with Larry Rothfield that Cuno is rather too focused on acquisitions, and would do well to focus more on how he will create efforts to educate the museum community, collectors, dealers, and the public in general on how to enjoy, teach, and learn about art/artifacts responsibly and ethically.

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