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In Other Words

Discussions about art and culture with today's makers, curators, collectors and advisors. Hosted by Charlotte Burns, senior editor for Art Agency, Partners.
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Now displaying: January, 2019
Jan 31, 2019

From ticketing scandals and the implications of Brexit, to a major £35m museum renovation, this episode of In Other Words features a frank conversation with Nicholas Cullinan, the director of London’s National Portrait Gallery, on a broad range of topics.

Cullinan discusses a recent attendance crisis at the museum, when faulty counters reported that visitor figures had fallen by 35% between 2017 and 2018. While the numbers were proven to be wildly inaccurate, the museum was blasted in the media, which suggested its contemporary program was out of touch with the public. In this episode, Cullinan counters some of the criticism: “Basically, you’re saying that we and possibly other British museums shouldn’t program contemporary artists or women artists if they don’t reach a huge audience. I disagree with that fundamentally.”

Cullinan talks to host Charlotte Burns about the implications of judging a museum’s success solely on attendance, a metric that is “both helpful and vital but should not be the only thing,” he says. “The key thing—in a way, the only thing that matters—is the integrity and the quality with which you do those projects. If we were doing exhibitions that we didn’t believe in, or were bad or shoddy or slapdash, that would be a concern.” 

Although the museum’s “entire remit is to serve the public”, it is 70% privately funded. Cullinan, who has worked within both American and British museums, talks about issues of funding in each country and ways to be innovative.

Recorded in London during a moment of acute political uncertainty, Cullinan discusses what it is like to manage a national museum in times of turmoil.  “I will really fight for the things I believe in and support them. I wouldn’t just abandon the ship,” he says. 

“You have to have the courage of your conviction. Things are changing around us rapidly and radically, and people have very opposing views. But what we represent, and what we should communicate, is both a timeless and very positive message about British identity,” he says. “It’s very important to hold on to that. So, in a way, we’re doubling down right now.”

Transcript: http://www.artagencypartners.com/transcript-popular-or-populist-a-conversation-with-nicholas-cullinan/

“In Other Words” is a presentation of AAP and Sotheby’s, produced by Audiation.fm.

Jan 17, 2019

“Being an artist was a great excuse for anything you wanted to do that was ‘different’,” says the artist, photographer and filmmaker Laurie Simmons, whose work is the subject of a major retrospective survey on show now at the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth (until 27 January).

In this episode, she talks to host Charlotte Burns about everything from Internet culture to egalitarian art and the concept of magical thinking. Simmons’s tableaus, which are often created with dolls, explore memory, sexuality and artifice and she discusses what it was (and is) like working in a male-dominated industry.

Transcript: http://www.artagencypartners.com/transcript-laurie-simmons/

“In Other Words” is a presentation of AAP and Sotheby’s, produced by Audiation.fm.

Jan 3, 2019

What were the hot topics of 2018? Host Charlotte Burns looks back on the year in this special episode, breaking down key moments in conversation with Julia Halperin (executive editor of artnet News).

The broadening of the canon across markets and museums—from African American artists to outliers, from women artists to conspiracists—was a major topic for In Other Words guests last year.

Another key area of focus was the future of the museum, with topics from deaccessioning to digital swarming discussed by institutional leaders in their appearances on the show, including Glenn Lowry (director, MoMA), Richard Armstrong (director, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and Foundation), Jessica Morgan (director, Dia Art Foundation), Michael Govan (CEO and Wallis Annenberg director, LACMA), Doryun Chong (deputy director and chief curator, M+ ), Budi Tek (founder, Yuz Museum and Foundation) and Lisa Phillips (director, New Museum of Contemporary Art).

And the most popular topic of 2018? Art criticism. Roberta Smith (co-chief art critic of the New York Times) and Jerry Saltz (New York magazine’s senior art critic) talked about their writing and audiences, as well as the best art being made today.

Tune in to toast the year.

Transcript: http://www.artagencypartners.com/podcast/podcast-highlights-from-2018/

“In Other Words” is a presentation of AAP and Sotheby’s, produced by Audiation.fm.

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