Over the holiday, the New York Times ran a story covering the high drama at Canada’s National Gallery as the Deputy Director jockeyed for position to succeed his boss:
Now as Pierre Théberge prepares to end his 11-year tenure as the director of the National Gallery, Canada’s wealthiest art institution, the museum is immersed in a controversy that has more in common with television comedies like “The Office” than debates about expenditures on paintings.
The chain of events has included the dismissal of David Franklin, the gallery’s deputy director and curator; the filing of a lawsuit by Dr. Franklin and his subsequent rehiring; the release of a series of unusually vitriolic internal e-mail messages; court filings that discuss the gallery’s “toxic” working atmosphere; and finally the appointment of a new director who takes over next month.
Throughout the conflict Mr. Théberge, 66, who was once mainly seen by the public as an eccentric who brought his terriers to work, has faced allegations from Dr. Franklin, 47, that he is “medically unfit” for his job.
“This has been a disgrace,” said René Blouin, a leading art dealer in Montreal, adding, “It’s very damaging for museums of that caliber when there is not pride at the top.”
National Gallery of Canada Looks Beyond Controversy and Court (The New York Times)