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March 25, 2013

D.C. Arts Patron Steps Up Lobbying to Lead Corcoran

Washington arts philanthropist Wayne Reynolds, aiming to bolster his unprecedentedly public campaign to become chairman of the Corcoran Gallery of Art, will host a reception this Friday to lay out his vision for remaking the struggling museum, The Washington Post writes.

Online invitations to the top-floor gathering at Washington's Hay-Adams Hotel began going out to local arts patrons and advocates last week. Mr. Reynolds, who made his name in D.C. culture circles by leading a $54-million fundraising campaign for Ford's Theatre, is calling for a radical revamp of the Corcoran that includes plan to finance an endowment for the institution by selling millions of dollars worth of works in its collection.

His brash approach contrasts starkly with the behind-the-scenes nature of most museum leadership fights, according to the Post, and has been rebuffed by Corcoran officials and board members, who have been engaged for months in a crafting their own revitalization plan.

"The Corcoran is outraged at Mr. Reynolds's reckless publicity campaign waged against the very institution he seeks to appoint himself to lead," museum spokeswoman Mimi Carter said.