Two Arts Leaders. Sixth edition update.

Happy New Year! This month I have two articles to share about arts leaders and leadership and I have a quick update on the status of the sixth edition of Management and the Arts.

Learning from Leaders

Chapter 8 in Management and the Arts 5e focuses on the function of leading and the leadership process. I think these articles below can help students see how concepts covered in that chapter can be operationalized. Asking students to identify how various theories are used by each leader would be one way to start. There are also examples of how each leader employs communication and motivational techniques and approaches to collaborating with and managing groups. Those of you who are arts managers may also find a few ideas you can use to be more effective leaders.

Kaywin Feldman, Director of the National Gallery of Art shares how she has met the challenges she faced since her appointment in March 2019 and how she is working to meet her overarching goal to put ‘national’ in the National Gallery. Meanwhile, Reggie Van Lee, the new chair of the Washington D.C. Commission on the Arts and Humanities, has been grappling with an organizational change process that has been daunting. His four “Cs” for success (courage, confidence, competence, and community) are helping him navigate his challenging new volunteer role.

Sixth Edition Update

The final manuscript for the sixth edition of Management and the Arts is now in the production stage at Routledge. I expect to receive the copyedited version of the book next month, and the final proofs in March. If all goes well, the book and its new companion website will be available in May or June. Stay tuned for updates.

Best wishes and thanks again for subscribing to these monthly postings.

Bill Byrnes


Putting the ‘national’ in the National Gallery: Kaywin Feldman wants the museum to serve the people

David Smith, The Guardian, Dec. 25, 2021

The director of America’s art museum aims to ‘listen to people whom museum directors don’t always hear’

Feldman became the fifth director of the National Gallery – and first woman to lead it – in March 2019. A year later she initiated an unprecedented shutdown because of the coronavirus pandemic and, like other cultural leaders, confronted historic racial injustices in the wake of the police murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis.

Now the gallery has a clutch of new shows that include African American photographer James Van Der Zee’s chronicle of life in Harlem, New York, in the 1920s and 1930s, and The New Woman Behind the Camera, a radical reassessment of the impact women had on the history of modern

Link to the full article:


Meet the management guru who is trying to fix the D.C. arts commission

Peggy McGlone, The Washington Post, Nov. 24, 2021

On a late September afternoon, Reggie Van Lee — management guru, arts philanthropist and new chairman of the D.C. Commission on the Arts and Humanities — sat on a folding chair in the back of a school auditorium in Congress Heights, listening to complaints about the commission’s grant process.

The application is cumbersome and the matching funds and reporting requirements impossible for small or understaffed organizations, said a few of the two dozen artists and leaders of grass-roots organizations who had gathered to talk about bringing equity to Washington’s arts funding. Some had concluded that the time needed to complete the application was not worth the money it might provide.

Van Lee has heard these complaints before. His usual response is to empathize with the speakers, but also to challenge them to help find a solution.

Here’s a link to the full article:

Here’s a link to the DC Commissions Organizational Chart