With every passing day it becomes more and more apparent that the appointment two years ago of Kirk Varnedoe to the directorship of the Department of Painting and Sculpture at the Museum of Modern Art has placed this great institution in serious jeopardy. The evidence accumulates—and at an alarming speed—that Mr. Varnedoe has launched MOMA’s most important department upon a course so disastrous that, if not promptly reversed, the very reason for the museum's existence might soon be in doubt. In every area of responsibility that has now come within his province—in his handling of the permanent collection, in his program of exhibitions, in his choice of appointments, and in his cockeyed revisionist reading of modernism itself—Mr. Varnedoe has quickly established an agenda that radically alters both the museum's function and its basic outlook on art. As a result, his brief but already ruinous...


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