Massive Links! Jeffrey Deitch Edition

by Art Fag City on January 12, 2010 · 26 comments Newswire

POST BY PADDY JOHNSON

The apocalypse has come! Jeffrey Deitch was appointed the new director of MoCA yesterday and will close his gallery. Facebook, Twitter and WordPress explode with chatter. I’ll be writing more on this tomorrow, but in the meantime — notes from a few others:

  • Modern Art Notes has an informative three-part interview with Jeffrey Deitch (One, Two, Three). It’s an interesting read, though I’ll note Deitch says his gallery’s never partnered with anyone or had a backer, even though Sotheby’s auction house purchased 50% of the gallery in 1997 according to The Times. I assume that kind of relationship has a different name, as I can think of no reason to purposefully create such a discrepancy.
  • Deitch talks about the ethical concerns of owning a large private collection and having many pre-established professional relationships with artists, a plan of action to get the museum more funding, and engaging the broader audience the museum attracts. The take home point of the interview, however, is that the Art Parade will come to L.A. Woot?

  • “The notion that commercial art dealers are somehow too soiled to run the sorts of institutions that have long histories of smuggling objects across international borders, resisting returning Nazi-looted works, and using their prestige to inflate the value of the collections (and egos) of selected trustees is symptomatic of a wholly irrational romanticism (not to mention willful blindness) in the art world, in my opinion.”  Hear hear! Thanks to Edward Winkleman who issues a rationed statement on conflict of interest concerns. I should note I still have different opinions about New Museum trustee members being given exhibitions. As James Westcott points out on my facebook page, it may be a difference of ingenuity and appropriateness fueling the split.
  • Culturegrrl isn’t a fan of the new Deitch appointment. Amongst her questions are:
  • Will artists attached to rival dealers be welcomed as warmly at MOCA as those from Deitch’s chosen group? Will collectors who aren’t associated with Deitch-the-Dealer be loath to associate with Deitch-the-Director? Will those collectors who always expected something from Deitch for their money still expect a quid pro quo—that the works and artists in their collections will be first among equals?

    These are reasonable questions, though I’m inclined to think the good Deitch will bring to MoCA will outweigh the complications brought by his previous life as a dealer.  The biggest concerns I have in this move is how this will effect the New York gallery scene. How much business will be lost with his absence? Where will his artists go? And of course, who will run the Art Parade?

{ 26 comments… read them below or add one }

Joseph January 12, 2010 at 7:02 pm

I think you should point out that Roberta Smith has reacted quite favorably to this appointment. It is unfair to bring out the one negative aspect mentioned in the article about Mr. Broad, and not the very positive comments about Mr. Deitch.

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Joseph January 12, 2010 at 3:02 pm

I think you should point out that Roberta Smith has reacted quite favorably to this appointment. It is unfair to bring out the one negative aspect mentioned in the article about Mr. Broad, and not the very positive comments about Mr. Deitch.

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Forrest January 12, 2010 at 7:04 pm

My biggest worry about all this is that the gallery’s program is poor. In fact, for a network of galleries at its scale, Deitch Projects has produced staggeringly few interesting exhibitions. I hope MOCA doesn’t become vehicle for a vision of art as an excuse for edgy parties and artists as quirky playmates.

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Forrest January 12, 2010 at 3:04 pm

My biggest worry about all this is that the gallery’s program is poor. In fact, for a network of galleries at its scale, Deitch Projects has produced staggeringly few interesting exhibitions. I hope MOCA doesn’t become vehicle for a vision of art as an excuse for edgy parties and artists as quirky playmates.

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Art Fag City January 12, 2010 at 7:46 pm

@Joseph You’re right. I updated the post.

Forrest I think that’s a good concern, though it does seem that different directors have varying degrees of sway on programming.

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Art Fag City January 12, 2010 at 3:46 pm

@Joseph You’re right. I updated the post.

Forrest I think that’s a good concern, though it does seem that different directors have varying degrees of sway on programming.

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Forrest January 12, 2010 at 7:50 pm

You’re right, and I’m not expecting that MOCA will become subject to programming dominated by work like that shown at Deitch Projects. But I think directors, especially high profile directors, frequently reflect and guide the spirit of the institution. Maybe all we’ll get is the business acumen and ample connections. Here’s hoping.

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Forrest January 12, 2010 at 3:50 pm

You’re right, and I’m not expecting that MOCA will become subject to programming dominated by work like that shown at Deitch Projects. But I think directors, especially high profile directors, frequently reflect and guide the spirit of the institution. Maybe all we’ll get is the business acumen and ample connections. Here’s hoping.

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JS January 12, 2010 at 11:05 pm

“maybe this means NYC will become ‘intellectual’ again, you know it once was. California and all those movie stars can take him, it’s good for him, good for MOCA, good for everyone”

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JS January 12, 2010 at 7:05 pm

“maybe this means NYC will become ‘intellectual’ again, you know it once was. California and all those movie stars can take him, it’s good for him, good for MOCA, good for everyone”

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Some Painter January 12, 2010 at 11:43 pm

JS: If by “intellectual” you mean boring conceptual art that has noting to do with actually making anything tangible and more to do with some bullshit French theory from 30 years ago, a simplistically produced inkjet print, or a white on white painting, then I will be the first to say to Jeffrey: “Please don’t go!”

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Some Painter January 12, 2010 at 7:43 pm

JS: If by “intellectual” you mean boring conceptual art that has noting to do with actually making anything tangible and more to do with some bullshit French theory from 30 years ago, a simplistically produced inkjet print, or a white on white painting, then I will be the first to say to Jeffrey: “Please don’t go!”

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JS January 13, 2010 at 12:49 am

damn “some painter” i was just quoting an overheard conversation on the topic today. “relax”

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JS January 12, 2010 at 8:49 pm

damn “some painter” i was just quoting an overheard conversation on the topic today. “relax”

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coagula January 13, 2010 at 2:51 am

CULTUREGRRRRL ASKS: Will artists attached to rival dealers be welcomed as warmly at MOCA as those from Deitch’s chosen group?

HA HA HA HA … MOCA with Jeremy Strick operated as a showroom for a handful of L.A. dealers. Deitch being guilty ’til proven innocent can be phrased thusly: Is MOCA doing business as usual?

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coagula January 12, 2010 at 10:51 pm

CULTUREGRRRRL ASKS: Will artists attached to rival dealers be welcomed as warmly at MOCA as those from Deitch’s chosen group?

HA HA HA HA … MOCA with Jeremy Strick operated as a showroom for a handful of L.A. dealers. Deitch being guilty ’til proven innocent can be phrased thusly: Is MOCA doing business as usual?

Reply

m January 13, 2010 at 3:04 am

this is the final nail in the coffin for soho. Ok sure, he put on a lot of schlock, but his program was on the rise and his energy, passion, cash, and overall presence will be missed.

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m January 12, 2010 at 11:04 pm

this is the final nail in the coffin for soho. Ok sure, he put on a lot of schlock, but his program was on the rise and his energy, passion, cash, and overall presence will be missed.

Reply

hayward January 13, 2010 at 5:30 am

I’m probably among the few anticipating the departure of Deitch from the NY commercial art world. I hope this in some way marks the end of an era. It has been like the hair metal era of the 80s. Flashy, vapid and eager to please. Lets bring it back to the work, a little less celebrity and glamophilia.

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hayward January 13, 2010 at 1:30 am

I’m probably among the few anticipating the departure of Deitch from the NY commercial art world. I hope this in some way marks the end of an era. It has been like the hair metal era of the 80s. Flashy, vapid and eager to please. Lets bring it back to the work, a little less celebrity and glamophilia.

Reply

lax January 13, 2010 at 9:11 am

Poor Jose ‘

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lax January 13, 2010 at 5:11 am

Poor Jose ‘

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crosshatched January 13, 2010 at 2:11 pm

I’m wondering how many people comprehend what a blow to the fragile economy the closing of the gallery represents. As with all galleries, it is not merely the artists and their product (not to mention staff), but all the ancillary hardware stores, printers, contractors, tech people, limo services, etc. I really would have thought the mayor would have countered with incentives to stay.

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crosshatched January 13, 2010 at 10:11 am

I’m wondering how many people comprehend what a blow to the fragile economy the closing of the gallery represents. As with all galleries, it is not merely the artists and their product (not to mention staff), but all the ancillary hardware stores, printers, contractors, tech people, limo services, etc. I really would have thought the mayor would have countered with incentives to stay.

Reply

MN83 January 13, 2010 at 6:15 pm

Jeffrey Deitch has always been “Little L.A.” for me. The way Ikea is kind of a little Sweden, and who doesnt’ love to go to ikea once in a while and be reminded that you can squeeze it all into 300 sq feet AND make it pretty? so yeah deitch was always a welcome trip; cheaper than airfare, but you got that whiff of cheap, brainless beauty and that necessarily crusty (“street”? hhahaha) glamour. The fact that he’s a sleazy dude with respect (or lack thereof) to women only made that LA quality so much more authentic. He will be missed.

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MN83 January 13, 2010 at 2:15 pm

Jeffrey Deitch has always been “Little L.A.” for me. The way Ikea is kind of a little Sweden, and who doesnt’ love to go to ikea once in a while and be reminded that you can squeeze it all into 300 sq feet AND make it pretty? so yeah deitch was always a welcome trip; cheaper than airfare, but you got that whiff of cheap, brainless beauty and that necessarily crusty (“street”? hhahaha) glamour. The fact that he’s a sleazy dude with respect (or lack thereof) to women only made that LA quality so much more authentic. He will be missed.

Reply

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