In an internal all-staff meeting today, Neal Benezra announced that he will step down from his role as Director of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) after 19 years at the museum, a current worker told Hyperallergic.
According to the San Francisco Chronicle, Benezra will formally leave the museum once a new director is hired and plans to assist in the search process.
During his tenure, Benezra led the museum’s 2013-2016 expansion, which more than doubled its exhibition space, and spearheaded acquisition projects like the Campaign for Art, adding more than 3,000 gifts of modern and contemporary artworks to the museum.
But the move comes after a tumultuous year at the Bay Area institution and trails the recent resignations of several high-ranking employees. The museum has been criticized for its sweeping layoffs and furloughs during the coronavirus pandemic and accused of fostering a culture of racism and structural inequities. As SFMOMA faced a projected $7 million deficit, workers denounced high executive salaries, including Benezra’s.
In May, while Black Lives Matter protests swept the country, the museum came under scrutiny after deleting a comment from a Black employee, Taylor Brandon, on its Instagram post featuring a Glenn Ligon artwork. (Benezra issued an apology after the incident.) Months later, former senior curator Gary Garrels resigned following backlash for a controversial comment about collecting art by white men.
In an interview with the Chronicle, Benezra says that his decision to step down preceded last year’s events.
“Succession planning is good governance, and it’s something that the board leaders and I have been talking about since the fall of 2019. This was not a sudden decision we came to,” Benezra told the Chronicle.
For the triennial’s eighth edition, work by more than 70 artists is featured in 12 exhibitions and a polyphonic program, installed at various locations throughout the German city.
Murch’s painted dust can be so tangible you feel compelled to wipe off the picture.
“As we grieve her loss, we call for full accountability for the perpetrators of this crime and everyone involved in authorizing it,” they wrote in an open letter.
This exhibition explores the work and short-but-impactful life of the groundbreaking ceramic artist. Now on view at the New Orleans Museum of Art.
The planned center will be named after Fred Rouse, a Black man who was lynched in the city of Fort Worth in 1921.
The researchers found that when eyes meet, certain areas of the brain start experiencing “neural firing.”
Curated by Clare Dolan, this solo exhibition in Frenchtown, NJ contains new and unearthed paintings, sculptures, and prints selected from the organization’s 60-year history.
From 1968 to 1973, the Nihon Documentarist Union did radical documentary work in Japan. They made two films in Okinawa before, during, and after its reversion.
Every corner and crevice of Columbia University’s MFA Thesis show feels lived in, reflecting not just artists’ experience quarantining with their work, but also that of re-entering society.
Sprawling across the Joshua Tree region, nine site-specific works consider the ways in which people have relocated to the desert, destroying what came before them, and cultivating new life.