White spearheaded many prominent projects during his tenure as director, such as raising more than $4 million in programming and collection support, securing Robert Indiana’s “Love” sculpture for the campus, and curating several highly attended exhibitions at the museum, such as “Art Interrupted: Advancing American Art and the Politics of Cultural Diplomacy”; “Immortales: the Hall of Emperors from the Capitoline Museums, Rome“; and “Macrocosm/Microcosm: Abstract Expressionism in the American Southwest.”
This summer’s upcoming exhibition “OK/LA” is White’s last curated project for the museum. The show will focus on the artistic legacy of Oklahoma expatriates Patrick Blackwell, Joe Goode, Jerry McMillan, Ed Ruscha, Paul Ruscha, and Mason Williams. The exhibition is scheduled to open in June, with an artist panel talk slated for September, according to the release.
While the university searches for a replacement for White through a national search committee, the position of interim director will be filled by B. Byron Price, who is currently the director of OU’s Charles M. Russell Center for the Study of Art of the American West.
“I am pleased to take the reins of the Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art as interim director and hope to help the museum sustain the positive momentum it has achieved under Dr. Mark White’s leadership,” said Price in a statement.