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January 30, 2018

Academic Institutions Respond to Chuck Close Sexual Assault Allegations

PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA—Following claims of sexual assault by artist Chuck Close from former models published by Huffpost and Hyperallergic and the cancellation of Close’s spring 2018 show at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts announced Monday that it would continue to host an exhibition of the artist’s photographs as planned. Chuck Close: Photographs has been on view at PAFA since October 2017, where it will end a tour that began in 2015 at the Parrish Museum of Art. Artnews’s Alex Greenberger reports that PAFA will follow the Close exhibition with a show of works from the academy’s permanent collection that respond to sexual assault.

The exhibition emerged from a forum organized by PAFA students and staff. “After the forum, a group of students, faculty, and museum staff are collectively, with my guidance, working on an exhibition that will go up, along the lines of a charrette or a workshop,” PAFA director Brooke Davis Anderson said. “It will go up outside the Chuck Close exhibition and will address issues of gender, power, the politics of the workplace in the art world, and, most specifically, the artist in the studio. Because PAFA is a museum in a school, the dynamic of the artist in the studio is something we think about all the time.”

Elsewhere, Sarah Cascone reports for Artnet that Seattle University has replaced a work by Close that hung in its Lemieux Library with an oil painting by Linda Stojak. Both works were donated to the school. Seattle University has not announced further plans concerning the Close work.

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