Director of Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), New York
In June, timed with the reopening of the renovated east wing of the Museum of Modern Art in New York, Lowry unveiled the full details of the next project at the institution he directs: a $400m extension and refurbishment. Financing for the new work – which will increase exhibition space by 17 percent – got a $50m boost from the hedge fund manager Steven Cohen and his wife, Alexandra. Lowry is keen to point out this isn’t just a capital project for the museum, but also a curatorial one. On completion in 2019 the museum will have moved away from medium-specific presentations to a thematic approach to the collection. (Though Lowry is now sixty-five, the age at which MoMA directors have traditionally retired, he shows no signs of leaving before the project is completed.) This year, when Trump barred entry to the US for travellers from several Muslim-majority countries, the museum quickly hung work by artists from those states. Is this remarkable responsiveness a sign of things to come?