Friday, December 11, 2009

RIP to the man who made the mummies dance: Thomas Hoving dead at 78

Colorful and controversial former Metropolitan Museum of Art director Thomas Hoving died in his Manhattan home yesterday of cancer; he was 78 years old. Hoving headed the museum between 1967 and 1977. More than anyone else, he brought the Met (with other museums tagging behind) out of the stone ages, making it a vibrant, exciting and controversial institution.Under his leadership, he wrote, “the most sweeping revolution in the history of art museums had taken place.”
NY TImes

Charlie Finch, Art Net Magazine
"A diamond square peg in a dusty round hole, Tom Hoving did more to change the cultural landscape of New York and the contemporary art world than any single human being, even Andy Warhol. You can read the details in his memoirs, which he courageously penned recently for Artnet Magazine, but let us consider what Hoving hath wrought. The blockbuster museum exhibition was his creation. Before Tom arrived, the Metropolitan Museum had all the sex appeal of a monastery.

"The major auction purchase? I give you Velásquez’ Juan de Pareja (1650), a newly minted 20th-century rediscoveries of Tom. Race and class cultural controversy in an art context? Tom's show "Harlem on My Mind," pissing people off decades before Mapplethorpe and Serrano."
ArtNet Magazine

An appreciation by Richard Lacayo (Time Magazine)

Culture Girl: Culture Girl

Wall Street Journal: Met Director made art the main event
Wall Street Journal

1 comment:

Zoomie said...

What, no mention of his "happenings?"