When you’re mayor of New York City, every major institution would like your ear. It must get boring to liaise with endless politicos and philanthropists, so perhaps that’s why Mayor Eric Adams made an unconventional choice for the appointment of his representative on the board of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Rather than choosing someone with government experience, back in February, Adams quietly named club owner Scott Sartiano as a board trustee for the Met, according to a report by Politico.
The 47-year-old Sartiano is the owner of the members-only Noho club Zero Bond, which Adams is known to frequent.
“While we do not discriminate based on race, socioeconomic status, or profession, we are highly particular on character,” says Zero Bond’s website. “We will only accept members that display a high level of integrity and demonstrate an ability to contribute to our Zero Bond community.”
Certainly this appointment is a big contribution, as Sartiano is now set to circulate among New York’s wealthy elite. He will act as an intermediary, communicating the mayor’s interests to the museum and the museum’s wishes to City Hall.
Perhaps, as the mayor’s press secretary suggested, Adams is looking for a fresh perspective on high art society from a nightlife luminary. Or perhaps he’s combining business with pleasure, since news of the art world is always more interesting when you hear it from a friend. Zero Bond hosted Adams’s victory after-party when he won the mayoral election last November.
The position under former mayor Bill de Blasio was held by Ken Sunshine, founder of the Sunshine Sachs public relations firm, who also served in politics as chief of staff in 1990 for then-mayor David Dinkins and as an advisor to former Governor Andrew Cuomo.
While lacking political pedigree, Sartiano certainly has star power connections, through Zero Bond and his other entertainment properties. The club owner has made no public statement, to date, on his role with the Met.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art has not yet responded to Hyperallergic’s request for comment.