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OPINION
August 7, 2012
Re "MOCA director takes on his foes," Aug. 5 Jeffrey Deitch, director of the Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art, seems to think that having more popular exhibits and bigger crowds will save MOCA. But where will people go if they want a more enriching experience than looking at some Dennis Hopper paintings? True, "Art in the Streets," MOCA's exhibition on graffiti, had visual impact. It highlighted a specific and largely unfamiliar sphere of urban culture. But there was not much below the surface.
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ENTERTAINMENT
April 5, 2014 | By Mark Swed, Los Angeles Times Music Critic
Shortly after assuming the helm as the fourth director of the Museum of Contemporary Art last month, Philippe Vergne visited the Los Angeles Times to meet with editors and writers. Still in the beginning stage of absorbing MOCA's history and formulating his mission, he didn't have a great deal to share about his plans. But when asked whether he thought performance, a currently disregarded part of the museum's founding mission, was important, Vergne answered that he wouldn't call it important.
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ENTERTAINMENT
November 8, 2012
"Blues for Smoke" is a vast exhibition at the Museum of Contemporary Art that explores art through the prism of the influence of Blues music. The interdisciplinary exhibit features works on film, paper, canvas, tape and more by more than 50 artists from the 1950s to the present. Geffen Contemporary at MOCA, 152 N. Central Ave., L.A.; Through Jan. 7. Closed Tuesdays and Wednesdays. $12. (213) 626-6222; http://www.moca.org.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 31, 2014 | By Christopher Knight, Los Angeles Times Art Critic
Last fall, when the big traveling retrospective of Los Angeles artist Mike Kelley (1954-2012) opened at MoMA PS1, the Museum of Modern Art's outpost in Long Island City, N.Y., the show looked smashing. Largely that was due to the intrinsic quality of Kelley's diverse work in a staggeringly wide range of media - sculpture, painting, drawing, installation, video, performance, mosaic - plus various mash-ups of just about all of them. Partly, though, it was serendipity. PHOTOS: 'Mike Kelley' exhibit A primary subject of Kelley's art is the way familiar social institutions of daily life - especially school and church, but also including art museums and other representatives of authoritative points of view - inevitably conspire to constrain, pressure and sometimes even warp the very adherents they seek to console and liberate.
NEWS
March 27, 2013 | By Carla Hall
It looks like the trustees of the Museum of Contemporary Art have put their money where their mouths are. They have been talking about an ambitious plan to quadruple the roughly $23 million endowment to $100 million, and on Tuesday, they put out an announcement that they had obtained commitments in the last two weeks for enough money to get them to $60 million. That's a great start, and a quick one too. The Times' editorial board recently said we'd like to see MOCA remain independent if that's financially possible.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 23, 2012
ART The Museum of Contemporary Art will present "A Tribute to Mike Kelley," an exhibition dedicated to the work and legacy of the contemporary artist who died earlier this month. The show, on display through April 2, will include 23 of Kelley's works, plus others by John Altoon, Cody Choi, Douglas Huebler, William Leavitt, Marnie Weber and Johanna Went, donated to MOCA by Kelley. MOCA, 250 S. Grand Ave. 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Sat. $10. Moca.org.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 7, 2014 | By Mike Boehm
L.A.'s Museum of Contemporary Art has reached its goal of a $100-million endowment, and museum leaders say they'll keep their fundraising campaign going with a new objective of $150 million. A written announcement listed 29 donations from individuals, couples or foundations, all but two of them from board members, their foundations or their families. The campaign also has elicited an unspecified number of anonymous gifts. MOCA provided no further details about the amounts.  TIMELINE: MOCA in flux Museum leaders also said it's possible, but not certain, that MOCA facilities will be named in honor of the campaign's top donors.
NEWS
November 21, 2009 | PATT MORRISON
Paul Schimmel doesn't need much encouragement to squire a guest around the Museum of Contemporary Art's galleries, which he does with the zest of a house-proud homeowner. And why shouldn't he? Next month, MOCA's chief curator celebrates 20 years with the museum, which has just put up a big, gorgeous show of its collections for its own "First Thirty Years" celebration. Neither anniversary might have happened. Money troubles threw a sincere scare about MOCA's survivability into the art world and the city.
OPINION
March 17, 2013
In the three decades since the Museum of Contemporary Art opened in a temporary space downtown in 1983, it has been variously flush with money and desperate for a bailout after having squandered its endowment. It's had great directors and controversial ones, good shows and bad shows, dissension in the ranks of its board, years of high attendance and periods of anemic crowds. Although its ranking among museums internationally has been somewhat diminished by the rise of newer, more ambitious institutions and its curatorial staff is a fraction of what it once was, its permanent collection remains one of the most acclaimed in the world.
NEWS
September 7, 2012 | By Mike Boehm
Prince's hit song “1999” suggested that the best response to tense times was to party even harder, but L.A.'s Museum of Contemporary Art apparently has other ideas. Museum spokeswoman Lyn Winter said Friday that it has decided to forgo the fall gala that had become a highlight of the social season.  “The MOCA galas historically have taken place at different times during the fiscal year, and this fiscal year's gala will be in the Spring. We will announce the date soon,” Winter said by email.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 30, 2014 | By Deborah Vankin
Diana Ross, in a ruffled crimson dress layered with sparkles, strutted across the stage Saturday night at the Museum of Contemporary Art's gala, belting out the lyrics to a classic tune that had particular resonance: “Did you think I'd crumble, did you think I'd lay down and die?” she crooned. “Oh no, not I. I will survive …” The crowd, thick with tuxedos and floor-length gowns, bobbed and cheered, iPhones swaying in the air to capture the soul-pop diva. It was only a year ago, after all, that MOCA was burdened by financial instability so severe that the museum nearly was forced to merge with another institution and lose its independence.
NEWS
March 30, 2014 | By Booth Moore, This post has been corrected. See the note below for details.
Pharrell Williams and Vivi Nevo sporting the same Vivienne Westwood Mountain hat. Socialite Joy Venturini Bianchi in a wonderfully wild  Tom Ford  zebra gown with a bristly mane. And designer Jeremy Scott playing the haute Chippendale dancer in a Moschino tuxedo, worn shirtless with a skinny patent leather necktie. The art, music and film crowds brought their fashion A-games for the Museum of Contemporary Art's 35th anniversary gala at the Geffen Contemporary at MOCA in downtown L.A. on Saturday night.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 21, 2014 | By Christopher Knight, Los Angeles Times Art Critic
By 1991, Mike Kelley had emerged as a crucial artist in Los Angeles, at the head of a pack that had pushed into prominence in the previous decade. His riveting sculptures reassembled from ratty stuffed animals, crocheted dolls and other tattered children's playthings that he scavenged from thrift shops were also generating considerable critical attention far beyond the city. Then 36, Kelley was invited to participate in the Carnegie International exhibition in Pittsburgh, one of the oldest and most respected surveys of its kind.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 19, 2014 | By Mike Boehm, Los Angeles Times
Philippe Vergne says his first task as the new director of L.A.'s Museum of Contemporary Art is not to act quickly but to think and plan deeply. On the job less than two weeks after extensive past experience as director of New York's Dia Art Foundation and top curator and deputy director of the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, Vergne spelled out no immediate changes Wednesday and said he'll look to MOCA's past achievements for guidance. GRAPHIC: MOCA's ups and downs with Jeffrey Deitch "The most important priority is to look at the programming and reimagine the program" of exhibitions and events, he said as he joined Lilly Tartikoff Karatz and Maurice Marciano, MOCA's new board co-chairs, and Maria Seferian, the museum's interim director before his arrival, for a discussion with Los Angeles Times reporters and editors.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 19, 2014 | By Mike Boehm and Deborah Vankin, Los Angeles Times
Capping 12 months that moved from a potential loss of independence to a chance at a fresh start under new museum director Philippe Vergne, L.A.'s Museum of Contemporary Art announced the return Tuesday of trustees John Baldessari, Barbara Kruger and Catherine Opie, prominent Los Angeles artists who had resigned from its board in 2012 as MOCA fell into upheaval, uncertainty and financial drift. Kathi Cypres and Steven F. Roth, who left the board more quietly in 2012, are also back as trustees, MOCA announced.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 18, 2014 | By Kelly Scott
The Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles announced Tuesday that three of the four artists who resigned from the museum's board in July 2012 over concerns about the direction of the institution will rejoin it. John Baldessari, Barbara Kruger and Catherine Opie will resume their positions as "artist trustees" on the MOCA board. Ed Ruscha, a former trustee who also resigned, will not return; he joined the board of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art in August. Instead, Mark Grotjahn will become the fourth artist on MOCA's board.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 25, 2013 | By Jori Finkel
An artist who mines the visual excesses and verbal tics of teenagers in the ADHD age of instant messaging, Ryan Trecartin has had important early shows in L.A., but MOCA's announcement of new acquisitions Thursday marks the first time his work is entering a museum collection here. With funds from its acquisition committee and from museum director Jeffrey Deitch, MOCA is buying "B: Settings," an over-the-top installation consisting of four rather manic videos and four "sculptural theaters," which look like makeshift arrangements of odd lounging furniture.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 25, 2014 | By Deborah Vankin
The Museum of Contemporary Art's new director, Philippe Vergne, has an official start date: March 10, MOCA has confirmed.  "I am very excited to welcome our new director Philippe Vergne to Los Angeles and to MOCA in his new leadership role which will begin officially on March 10," said MOCA Board Co-Chair Maurice Marciano. "I am also grateful for the remarkable commitment of Interim Director Maria Seferian in guiding the successful director search and in supporting the MOCA Board's recent fundraising achievements, placing the museum in its strongest position in 35 years.
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