What’s happening to the museum world? I was a museum director for ten years and a curator for years before that. Sometimes I shake my head in bewilderment and chagrin.
The biggest museum scandal in my time, bigger than the Gardner theft (13 works of art stolen, and to this day never recovered, from the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum), is the museum lockout culture that developed during the COVID-19 hysteria. I’ve written about this many times, but it bears repeating and embellishment since there’s so much fallout.
There’s the strangest new dynamic in museums these days. I think it’s infecting the entire not-for-profit world, too. They’re absorbing the ethos of public-school teachers’ unions.
I like teachers. I taught for years. In my hometown, little Arlington in Vermont, our teachers are fantastic. They didn’t want to abandon their students, most poor and special-needs kids, in March. The COVID hysteria, though,