Izabela Depczyk, CEO of ‘ARTnews’ Resigns Four Months After Merger with Brant Publications’ ‘Art in America’

Will the veteran art publications survive the ongoing shakeup?

Izabela Depczyk.
Photo: via Polskieradio.pl

The publisher and CEO of ARTnews magazine, Izabela Depczyk, who took the helm in June 2014, has announced her resignation with immediate effect.

Depczyk, who’s also the president of the board, is stepping down only four months after the merger of 113-year-old magazine ARTnews with Art in America, The Magazine Antiques, and Modern Magazine, publications owned by newsprint magnate and art collector Peter Brant.

According to Artinfo, Depczyk’s resignation was announced in an investor note that was posted on the website of ARTnews SA, the Warsaw-based parent company of ARTnews magazine which is now 60 percent owned by Brant’s BMP Media Holdings LLC.

“It was a privilege for me to work with all the great people at ARTnews SA on both sides of the Atlantic and to lead the transformation of our flagship brands of ARTnews, Art & Business, and Skate’s into vibrant, market-defining art media properties, culminating with the last month’s mile-stone merger with the art media assets acquired from BMP Media Holdings LLC,” Depczyk said in a statement.

“As I consider my mission at ARTnews fully accomplished I would like to thank all of my colleagues, clients, shareholders, and partners for this unforgettable opportunity and a fantastic journey,” she added.

The current covers of ArtNews and Art in America magazines.

Recent covers of ARTnews and Art in America magazines.

Despite Depczyk’s seemingly prompt exit, a successor to the presidency of the board has already been appointed. Advertising executive Dan Gardner, who joined the board of ARTnews SA in October, will take over as its chairman.

When Gardner joined less than two months ago, the private equity investor Heiner Rutt and Ed Sherrick, a former executive at White Birch Paper—a company controlled by Brant—have also joined the board, coinciding with Marcin Depczyk’s—Izabela’s father—departure from the board.

Despite the shakeup, at the time it was announced that Izabela Depczyk would keep her post as CEO. But only a few weeks later the situation has changed.

“Over the last two years Izabela led the company through a complete transformation from a local Polish, small scale, art business into the world’s leading art media company—ARTnews SA,” Gardner said in a statement. “On behalf of the Supervisory Board and all of the ARTnews shareholders, I would like to congratulate and thank Izabela for her clear vision and unwavering determination to get things done and to wish her all the best in her new professional endeavors,” said the new board chairman.

According to artnet News’ Brian Boucher, Art in America had seen its editorial staff shrink over the last decade and ad sales stagnate since the 2008 crash. Meanwhile, according to Artinfo, between July 2014 and the merger with Brant in July 2015, the number of full-time employees at ARTnews in New York went from 34 to 17.

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