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John Spiak to Leave ASU Art Museum in August

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After 17 years at ASU Art Museum, curator John Spiak says he and his wife, Cassandra Coblentz, curator at Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art, will be packing their bags for California in August. 


The two have had a significant impact on the local arts community -- Spiak curated the first museum solo shows of local artists including Angela Ellsworth, Sloane McFarland, and Jon Haddock, and he's presented international artists including Pipilotti Rist, Shirin Neshat, and Sean Duffy. 

At SMoCA, Coblentz curated a variety of exhibitions by local and international artists including Sue Chenoweth, Jon Fisher and Jeff Shore, Dan Perjovschi, Martin Kersels and Pae White. She's also coordinated the museum's Art + Architecture series with work by Cy Keener and Jay Atherton and the museum's current exhibition Expanded Collapse by Annie Han and Daniel Mihalyo. 

Spiak says he's accepted a position as the Director and Chief Curator at the Grand Central Art Center at California State University, Fullerton, but that the couple will occasionally be back to work on local projects, including the long-running ASU Annual Short Film and Video Festival

Spiak and Coblentz are both from from California; Spiak from Orange County, Coblentz from Los Angeles. Coblentz says they both have ties (both family and art) to California and that she's looking forward to engaging with another community, watching Spiak help shape another institution, and getting some more time with their son. 

We were more than happy when they arrived, and even happier when they stuck around (and got married), and we'll definitely still be happy to see the power couples' names in lights and their continuing effect on the local art scene.

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