Taipei Fine Arts Museum director appointed after 2 years of controversy

With a new director set to take over, observers hope the Taipei Fine Arts Museum will return to a more focused institutional direction.

On 2 July 2012, the Taipei Fine Arts Museum (TFAM) held an inauguration ceremony for their new Director, Taiwanese art curator and critic Huang Hai-Ming. Huang will take up a post that has remained empty since the previous director, Hsieh Hsiao-Yun, left in March 2010.

Seventh Director of the Taiwan Fine Arts Museum, Huang Hai-Ming.

Since then, the directorship position for the Taipei Fine Arts Museum (TFAM) has been filled by a number of transitional appointments. The post was first assumed by Deputy Director Chen Wen-ling from March to September 2010. Tamkang Univeristy professor of architecture Wu Kwang-Tyng became the next TFAM Director in September 2010.

However, not long after the appointment, Wu accused former Director Hsieh Hsaio-yun of neglecting the museum’s academic mission in favor of hosting blockbuster international exhibitions to raise her own profile. He also claimed that the museum had skirted procedure and run these large-scale exhibitions at a loss [article written in Chinese], damaging the institution’s reputation.

Taiwan’s Department of Government Ethics ran an investigation into Hsieh’s practices at the Museum, while at the same time she publicly called on the city to not rehire Wu when his term expired. Though Hsieh was ultimately exonerated, the damage was done; both Wu and Hsieh resigned in July 2011.

Since then, Deputy Director Munich Liu and Executive Secretary of the Taipei City Archives Weng Chih-Tsung successively took up the post as acting directors of TFAM. With Huang Hai-Ming’s appointment, Taiwanese art professionals hope the museum will be able to return to the professional management which has been its hallmark since it first opened in 1983.

About Director Huang Hai-Ming

Huang Hai-Ming is a renowned Taiwanese art curator, critic and professor. He has been teaching at the National Taipei University of Education since 1997, and in 2006 was appointed the first chairperson of the university’s Department of Cultural Creative Industries. He served as the first director of the Association of Culture Environment Reform Taiwan and has curated a number of large-scale public art installations. Huang was also a founder and joint-curator of the first edition of the Taiwan Avant-Garde Documenta in 2000.


Related Topics: art in Taipei, curatorial practice, museums

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