MOCA still mum about curator's firing, despite crucial questions and too few...

MOCA still mum about curator's firing, despite crucial questions and too few answers

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When news leaked last week that the highly regarded chief curator at the Museum of Contemporary Art had been summarily fired, replaying a similar scenario that had roiled the institution six years earlier, the usual question loomed large: Why?

Today, about a week later, we still have no answer as to why MOCA Director Philippe Vergne fired chief curator Helen Molesworth — and we likely won’t. I have a few speculations, which I’ll get to. But the action represents larger stresses vexing the museum world in our New Gilded Age.

A high-profile dismissal such as this one, featuring two widely admired museum professionals, needs to be handled carefully. But it wasn’t.

The abruptness…



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