Guggenheim’s Conservation Initiative to Include Intellectual Property and Artists’ Rights
The recent Guggenheim appointment of Jefferey Weiss is part of the Panza Collection Conservation Initiative (PCCI), which the Guggenheim announced last month along with a major grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation of $1.23 million to support the first phase of this project. According to the Guggenheim, the first phase will undertake a comprehensive evaluation of the Minimalist, Post-Minimalist, and Conceptual artworks, from the 1960s through the 1970s, in the Guggenheim’s Panza Collection. During the first phase of the project, case studies will be constructed around the work of four artists in the Guggenheim’s Panza Collection: Dan Flavin, Donald Judd, Bruce Nauman, and Lawrence Weiner.
Richard Armstrong, Director of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation and Museum, said, “Many of the works in the Guggenheim’s Panza Collection are ephemeral or conceptual and pose unique challenges to curators and conservators who strive to accurately exhibit and sustain the work for generations to come. The Mellon Foundation grant enables us to undertake the first critical phase of research and interdisciplinary dialogue toward what is envisioned as a long-term plan of action to address all works in the Panza Collection.” Mr. Armstrong added, “The ultimate goal of the Panza Collection Conservation Initiative is to establish strategies for exhibiting and effectively preserving the Panza Collection works, which, in turn, will provide essential precedents for other cultural institutions grappling with similar collection-based issues.”
The PCCI was conceived by Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation Deputy Director and Chief Curator Nancy Spector and Deputy Director and Chief Conservator Carol Stringari, who will remain integral to and head the project. “The Panza Collection provides a critical opportunity to explore the shifting views on preserving works that have multiple historical iterations or that can be refabricated; this inevitably raises trenchant museological issues involving institutional responsibility, collection management policies, market pressures, and artists’ rights,” they said.
The information gathered from documentary research, preliminary interviews, and examination of the works will be presented to an Advisory Committee comprised of curators from museums with comparable collections of art from the 1960s and 1970s; art historians who have researched and published extensively on Minimalism, Post-Minimalism, or Conceptual art; conservators who have researched and treated works from this period; theorists involved with the Variable Media Initiative; representatives of artists’ foundations and estates; and attorneys familiar with traditional property rights, intellectual property law, and the Visual Artists Rights Act of 1990.
The Advisory Committee will encompass many viewpoints and represent the interests of scholars and professionals in multiple disciplines, such as art, art history, philosophy, law, science, and conservation.
Read the Guggenheim’s press release here.