Arty Girl: SMoCA Eliminates Senior Curator Position

The radio tells me that 8.5 million Americans have lost their jobs due to the economy.

Make that 8.5 million and one.

Today is Senior Curator Claire Schneider's last day at the Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Arts.

The plan was made in June 2009 when the fiscal year budget was examined. It was clear the museum needed to save some serious cash. After much discussion, SMoCA's interim director and the Scottsdale Cultural Council decided to eliminate the Senior Curator position; to be effective after January 2010.

SMoCA's new director, Timothy Rodgers (who joined the museum in November 2009), issued this statement:

"The Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art, like all arts organizations in the Valley, is dealing with the impact of a changed economy. Difficult decisions must be made to continue the core mission of the institution."

Claire Schneider started her position with SMoCA in April, 2008. She moved to Scottsdale from Buffalo, NY where she had worked as a curator at the Albright Knox Art Gallery for ten years. With one heck of a resume (B.A. in Art History from Tufts University in Boston, M.A. from Williams College, and curatorial internships at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York and the Massachussetts Museum of Contemporary Art, among others), Schneider took the position at SMoCA to follow her passion for contemporary art.

During her short time at SMoCA, Schneider co-curated the "Seriously Funny" show that celebrated the museum's ten year anniversary and she had a heavy hand in snagging the "Nick Cave: Meet Me at the Center of the Earth" exhibition. Her final curatorial work at SMoCA can be seen at the "Rewind, Remix, Replay: Design, Music and Everyday Experience" on display now through May 23.

The remaining curatorial staff, Associate Curator Cassandra Coblentz and Assistant Curator Claire C. Carter, will share Schneider's former responsibilities.

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