No "Permanent Space" in Geffen Galleries, Says LACMA
|Yi Inmun, The Poet Li Bai Watching a Waterfall, 18th-early 19th century. Chang Collection, LACMA. Photo by Rose Photography, Venice, CA|
"The museum is grateful to Chester and Cameron Chang for their generous gift of art to LACMA… However, we wanted to clarify that there are currently no plans for a permanent space for Korean art or any other area of the collection, nor will there be a dedicated space named after Mr. Chang within the David Geffen Galleries."
I have consequently taken down that post and replaced it with this one. As to the mixed messaging, Youn says that "we are working with Mr. Chang to update his website to correct this." (As of this morning the website is offline.)
The background: Chester Chang moved to the U.S. as a child in 1949, when his father took up a diplomatic post in Los Angeles. The family's art collection, intact since the 19th century, was transferred to the U.S. in 1958. As a former LACMA trustee, Dr. Chang and family donated several dozen Korean ceramics in the early 2000s. In 2021 LACMA announced that Dr. Chang and his son Dr. Cameron C. Chang had gifted a hundred further artworks. A selection of about 35 pieces in various media are scheduled to go on view next year in "Korean Treasures from the Chester and Cameron Chang Collection" (Resnick Pavilion, Feb. 25–June 30, 2024).
Chester Chang told the Korea Daily that he plans to donate "over 1000 Korean artworks" to LACMA, considerably more than the 100 in the 2021 announcement. Youn says that LACMA estimates the number at close to 500 gifts and promised gifts.
Korea Daily reporter Nichole Chang wrote that "LACMA plans to inaugurate a permanent exhibition hall named the Chester Chang Exhibition Hall." In yesterday's post, I noted the (apparent) irony of that, given Michael Govan's plan to show the permanent collection in changing thematic displays. It was the lack of a fixed space for European art that contributed to the falling-out between LACMA and the Ahmanson Foundation. But Youn reiterates that the new Peter Zumthor building will not have dedicated space for any type of art.
The Chang collection ranges from the Three Kingdoms period to the mid 20th century and includes ceramics, lacquer, furniture, scholar's objects, paintings, calligraphy, and sculpture. It will join another large Korean collection, the 250-piece trove assembled by dealer Robert W. Moore, which came to the museum by gift and purchase in 1999.
|Kim Kwanho, Portrait of the Artist's Daughter, 1957. Chang Collection, LACMA|
|Faceted Vase, Joseon Dynasty, 19th century. Chang Collection, LACMA|