in News | 23 MAR 18

Activists Call on the Met to Means Test its Admission Charge

In further news: Turner Prize-winning artist Jeremy Deller protests Facebook; Hepworth Sculpture Prize shortlist announced

in News | 23 MAR 18

Courtesy: the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Wikimedia Commons

Activist group Equitable Met is campaigning for New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art to revise their admission ticket prices according to income. The museum recently announced a mandatory USD$25 admission charge for non-New Yorkers, with the change going into effect at the beginning of March. When the introduction of the charge was announced it received significant public criticism. Now Equitable Met are calling on the museum to make sure the ticket hike doesn’t impact low-income visitors, and proposes a new ticket pricing system ranging from USD$0 to USD$35 depending on the visitor’s tax bracket. Read Cody Delistraty on why the Met’s introduction of an admission charge shows us the problem with donor dependence and a hands-off government in the US.

Turner Prize-winning artist Jeremy Deller has responded to Facebook’s recent data exploitation controversy, designing posters which show users how to leave the social network. The ‘How to Leave Facebook’ posters were handed out at stations in London and Liverpool as well as Facebook’s London headquarters; they consist of a set of instructions on how to delete a Facebook account – the event was part of the ‘Rapid Respond Unit’ project which uses artists as ‘correspondents’ to respond to the news cycle. Deller has taken to posters to respond to UK news events before; ahead of the UK general election in 2017, his ‘Strong and stable my arse’ posters mocked a Tory government slogan.

Deller will be joining other leading artists including Anthea Hamilton and Cécile B. Evans for this year’s edition of Art Night which is heading to south London, in collaboration with the Hayward Gallery. The free arts festival will take place across a variety of sites on the night of 7 July 2018, including Battersea Power Station and the British Interplanetary Society.

Meanwhile, Anthea Hamilton’s Tate Britain Duveen Galleries commission The Squash has opened – an installation filled with pumpkin-headed performers lounging across a white-tiled space – ‘Nicholas Nixon’s photograph Boston Common (1978) has come up as a reference point for the rehearsals for my Duveen Galleries commission,’ the Turner Prize nominee tells us: ‘an exercise in hanging out.’

Michael Dean, Mona Hatoum, Phillip Lai, Magali Reus and Cerith Wyn Evans have been nominated for the 2018 Hepworth Prize for Sculpture, a GBP£30,000 biennial award which recognizes artists with a link to the UK who have made ‘a significant contribution to the development of contemporary sculpture’ – the shortisted artists will show work at the UK’s Hepworth Wakefield gallery in October, with the winner announced in November.

Berlin’s Humboldt Forum has announced Hartmut Dorgerloh, currently head of the Prussian Palaces and Garden Foundations, to be its new director. The ethnography museum is scheduled to open at the end of 2019. Meanwhile, ethnomusicologist Lars-Christian Kochof has been announced as the Humboldt’s director of collections.

And the Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia has announced that it is the first museum to be certified by Working Artists and the Greater Economy (W.A.G.E) – the organization which campaigns for artists to be better compensated by institutions showing their work. ‘Our partnership with W.A.G.E. helps to set a new standard in the museum field, one that ensures equitable environments for the artists with whom we work,’ ICA director Amy Sadao commented.