Curator Dan Cameron Laid Off From Orange County Museum Amid Restructuring by New Director Todd DeShields Smith

Dan Cameron will curate the inaugural Kansas City biennial, Open Spaces.
Image: Via art21

The Orange County Museum of Art has laid off five employees including chief curator Dan Cameron, the LA Times reports.

OCMA’s new director and CEO, Todd DeShields Smith, thanked Cameron and other ex-staffers in a statement to the LAT, saying Cameron “made some significant contributions,” while citing his re-launching of the California Biennial as the International California-Pacific Triennial.

The museums is currently without a chief curator, and Smith, who was named director in May 2014, will oversee programming in the interim.

Smith has led several small institutions across the US, but it is his tenure at the Tampa Museum of Art in Florida that, the LAT suggests, might have been behind his appointment at OCMA.

There, Smith successfully managed the construction of a new $32-million building which was completed on schedule and below budget.

OCMA has been planning to relocate into a new space at the Segerstrom Center for the Arts in Costa Mesa for years, yet the undertaking was hindered by lack of funds. Smith wants to prioritize the construction of a new building in Costa Mesa (see Orange County Museum of Art in Talks to Sell Its Land).

The LAT also points out that OCMA has been running a deficit since 2012, which is now in the seven figures.

Dan Cameron has staged clever and compelling shows at OCMA, and is credited with the successful re-launching of the California Biennial into the International California-Pacific Triennial.

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