Museums in Crisis
Last updated: March 14, 2019
A selection of essays, historical documents, interviews and op-eds on the controversial history of museums and patronage in Los Angeles—from early censorship debates, protests, and struggles over representation at LACMA to the financial collapse of the Pasadena Art Museum—intended to contextualize the ongoing crisis at the Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA).
Pasadena’s Collapse and the Simon Takeover: Diary of a Disaster (1975) by John Coplans
During his long, high-spirited career, photographer John Coplans (1920-2003) served as director of the Akron Art Museum, editor in chief of Artforum, and senior curator of the Pasadena Museum of Art. In this 1975 Artforum essay, he recounts the Pasadena Museum's financial collapse and subsequent takeover by powerful Southern California industrialist Norton Simon.
Museums in Crisis Archive