Zeitz museum boss astounds the art world, so why did he resign?

Business Live | Melvyn Minnaar

Mystery still surrounds Mark Coetzee’s dramatic and surprise resignation last Wednesday as executive director and chief curator of the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa (Zeitz Mocaa). So far, Coetzee has not responded to inquiries after the museum’s public relations company released a terse statement that he was suspended from his duties, with this loaded statement: “An inquiry into Mr Coetzee’s professional conduct has been initiated by the trustees. Mr Coetzee has since tendered his resignation.”

The ever-sensitive and sometimes small-minded local art world has been tittering since. And, of course, the direction of the tourist-luring Zeitz Mocaa is up for discussion, because Coetzee was, if anything, the boss. The shock resignation came two weeks after the opening of the Norval Foundation in Steenberg, an echo of the Zeitz Mocaa’s concept of capitalist collector art. The trustees have announced that the Nigerian photography expert Azu Nwagbogu, an adjunct curator, will take over the directorship. For the rest they are staying tight-lipped about that “inquiry”…read more

Image: Mark Coetzee admires one of the acquisitions of the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa in February 2015