New Instagram account calls out discrimination and insensitivity at art museums

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To hold art institutions publicly accountable, a new Instagram account is posting anonymous stories of discrimination at museums. Photo by Pixabay.

A new Instagram account called Change the Museum launched last month. Each post tells an anonymous story of discrimination at museums nationwide. The account now has nearly 18,000 followers and more than 200 posts. 

Some posts are calling out famous museums, including the Getty, the Museum Of Contemporary Art (MOCA), and the Denver Art Museum. The account is run by a small group of art workers and artists. They say they’ve experienced and witnessed discrimination based on gender, sexual orientation, race, and class. Through the posts, they hope to hold institutions publicly accountable as a way to demand systemic change.

The people who run the account say that they weren’t aware of retaliation by these institutions thus far. But in a statement provided to KCRW, they said, “We have been made aware, however, of some institutions taking action steps based on ‘feedback’ recently received. Though the source of this ‘feedback’ has not been revealed by these museums, inside sources have attributed much of it to the @changethemusuem account. This is exactly our goal — it is the reaction we want to see from museum administrations!”


KCRW reached out to the Getty for a response to the allegations laid out in various posts on the account. The Getty said, “We
are watching the account closely, and sharing posts with senior leadership, Human Resources, and the Getty’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Council. Of course we can’t comment on individual posts, since they are anonymous, and personnel laws would prevent us from publicly discussing individual employee matters.”

Credits

Guest:
Lindsay Preston Zappas - Contemporary Art Review Los Angeles

Host:
Steve Chiotakis

Producers:
Christian Bordal, Jenna Kagel