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Modern Art Oxford


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Institution founded in Oxford in 1966 by a group of art lovers under the chairmanship of Trevor Green, an architect. Initially they hoped to create a museum with a permanent collection of post-1945 art, but this proved financially unfeasible, so they decided instead to establish a home for a programme of changing exhibitions. The original premises were in King Edward Street, and in 1970 the museum moved to its present home—part of a 19th-century storehouse in Pembroke Street that was formerly used as a brewery. A large extension was completed in 1981 and named as the John Piper Gallery. The museum mounts a wide range of exhibitions (which often tour in Britain and abroad) and also hosts lectures and seminars. Many of the exhibitions have dealt with art that is generally little known in Britain, particularly from eastern European countries, and their catalogues have made significant contributions to scholarship. The museum has built up a research library and archive based on its activities, and has a particularly important Rodchenko collection, assembled for an exhibition of his work in 1979 (much of the material was donated by the artist's family in Moscow). The impressive contributions to Russian studies reflect the fact that the director of the museum for much of its history, David Elliott (1949– ), is a noted scholar of Russian art. He succeeded Nicholas Serota as director in 1976 and left to become director of the Moderna Museet, Stockholm, in 1996. Subsequent directors have been Kerry Brougher, appointed in 1996, and Andrew Nairne, 2001–8. Until 2002 the institution was known as the Museum of Modern Art, an appellation which had given rise to some criticism on the grounds that there was no permanent collection. The core funding comes from Oxford City Council and Arts Council England.

http://www.modernartoxford.org.uk/media/pdf/180806_033725.pdf The official history of the organization.

Subjects: Art.


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