Soho’s Best Galleries Closing as Deitch Takes L.A. Museum Job

01/12/2010 12:01 PM |

Deitch Projects Soho

As I wrote yesterday, and as every art blog will not stop discussing, Jeffrey Deitch, the man behind the Deitch Projects mini-empire of art galleries (two in Soho and a massive waterfront warehouse in Long Island City) has been appointed the director of the budget cut- and resignation-riddled Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA), and will start work in that capacity as of June 1st.

But, as many of us have been wondering, just how will this new job as the leader of a non-profit art institution affect his work as the director of a very dynamic and important commercial gallery? Well, according to the Observer, Deitch Projects will close up shop completely between now and June 1st.

This is both exactly as it should be—so that there are no questionable MOCA shows featuring a few too many Deitch artists (ahem, New Museum!)—but also kind of sad in that Deitch Projects represents some of the most exciting young art stars of the day (like Tauba Auerbach, Kehinde Wiley, Swoon, Ryan McGinness, Fischerspooner, and the late Keith Haring) and Jeffrey Deitch has developed a reputation for giving his artists unheard of budgets and benefits to create their work. Couldn’t he hand the gallery over to one of his three gallery directors? Are the beautiful spaces on Grand and Wooster doomed to be converted into fancy boutiques? Why must commerce and art always be so awkward around one another?