Thursday, March 07, 2013

LA TIMES Says LACMA Offers to Buy MOCA! Will Eli Broad - or - the Getty Ride to the Rescue?

Jori Frankell of the Los Angeles Times reports that Los Angeles County Museum of Art has made an offer to acquire the Museum of Contemporary Art in response to an request from members of the MOCA Board with the implication that it came from MOCA co-cjhairs 
The Los Angeles County Museum of Art has made a formal proposal to acquire the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles, which has been struggling with financial troubles and staff and board defections.
LACMA Director Michael Govan and the two co-chairs of his board made the offer in a Feb. 24 letter to the MOCA board co-chairs, laying out the rationale for an acquisition.
The letter said that LACMA would preserve MOCA’s two downtown locations and operate them under the MOCA name, according to people who have seen the letter but were not authorized to discuss it publicly.
Now the article seems to imply that the MOCA co-chairs made the request, but it does not state that.
For its part, LACMA would agree to raise $100 million for the combined museums as a condition for completing the deal, these people said.
Govan declined to discuss any specific terms of the proposal but characterized it as "friendly and cooperative," saying that it came in response to a request from MOCA board members.
"Yes, MOCA leadership initiated a request for a proposal. But, back and forth, people have been talking for years, so it’s a blurry line."
Which  leadership?  Is that  MOCA director Jeffrey Deitch?  The two board co-chairs?  Or??  And what does Eli Broad think - or know about all this?  This is the article's only mention of Broad.
(LACMA had proposed a merger in 2008, before the museum's $30-million bailout by billionaire philanthropist Eli Broad.)
Hit the link at the top of my post to see the rest of the article.  But, right now there are very few facts - and lots of unanswered questions - including one mentioned at the very end.
MOCA leaders, who have also been involved in discussions with the University of Southern California about a possible partnership, were unavailable for immediate comment.

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