Guggenheim Museum Staffers Prepare to Unionize

In further news: Tate collection heads to Shanghai’s Pudong Museum of Art; photojournalist Newsha Tavakolian banned from working in Iran

Night-time guerrilla projection onto the Guggenheim Museum, New York, 27 April 2016, carried out by Gulf Labor Coalition, Global Ultra Luxury Faction, Occupy Museums and The Illuminator. Courtesy: Global Ultra Luxury Faction (GULF), The Illuminator.

Night-time guerrilla projection onto the Guggenheim Museum, New York, 27 April 2016, carried out by Gulf Labor Coalition, Global Ultra Luxury Faction, Occupy Museums and The Illuminator. Courtesy: Global Ultra Luxury Faction (GULF), The Illuminator.

Workers at the Guggenheim Museum in New York are preparing to unionize. The news follows an uptick in unionization efforts in cultural institutions across the US, including New York’s New Museum, the Brooklyn Academy of Music and the Tenement Museum. Now staffers working in installation, construction, maintenance and art handling are taking steps to form a union at the Guggenheim, Artnews reports, which would be part of IUOE Local 30. Museum officials will meet employees later today. Staffers involved in the unionization effort have suggested that the museum’s wages are too low and are calling for rates for raises to be lifted. Don’t miss Meagan Day writing for frieze on what the art world can learn from organized labour, and how cultural workers are increasingly agitating for a seat at the table.

Meanwhile the Tate has agreed to send its collection to Shanghai’s forthcoming Pudong Museum of Art, which is scheduled to open in 2021. The deal will see three exhibitions drawing on the Tate collection at the Pudong Museum of Art – with further assistance provided by Tate around visitor services, art handling and audience development, the Art Newspaper reports. Read Ingrid Chu’s 2017 feature on China’s new museum boom here.

The photojournalist Newsha Tavakolian has been banned from working in Iran. The Tehran-based photographer has not received an official response from Iranian authorities, Art Asia Pacific reports. Her partner, New York Times correspondent Thomas Erdbrink, has also had his press permit withdrawn. Tavakolian’s work has been shown in several international exhibitions including the Iran Pavilion at the 56th Venice Biennale and London’s V&A. She was the recipient of the 2015 Prince Claus Award and became a Magnum Associate in 2017.

In gallery news: Pace Gallery represents painter Jo Baer; Sperone Westwater in New York has added Rochelle Feinstein to its roster, New York’s Miles McEnery Gallery now represents Warren Isensee and Daniel Rich; and Hauser & Wirth has announced worldwide representation of Annie Leibovitz.

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Janiva Ellis, Catchphrase Coping Mechanism, 2019, oil on linen, 2.2 x 1.8 m. Courtesy: the artist and 47 Canal, New York; photograph: Joerg Lohse

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