Tuesday, July 25, 2006


BlogBack: My Row with Tinterow

Responding to my posts here and here about Metropolitan Museum curator Gary Tinterow's views on collection management, Rob Krulak writes:

Beyond claiming the public's stake in the holdings of art museums as a private concern of curators, Gary Tinterow also seems to credit curators with the very creation of great public collections, as if there is an unbroken golden chain of specialist curators that stretches into the prehistory of every art museum.

That's just not how great museum collections are formed, evolve, or even come to be called great. I suppose civic entrepreneurs, private collectors (what would the Met be without Havemeyers?), journalists, academic art historians, the public, the brilliant non-specialists who created our earliest civic collections, and everyone else who contributes to the institutional and aesthetic meaning of museums were just along for the ride.

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