Ralph Rugoff

Director of Hayward Gallery

This onetime LA Weekly art critic and director of San Francisco’s CCA Wattis is now into his fifth year at London’s Hayward Gallery, and has done much to revive the gallery as one of London’s most popular venues for contemporary art. Enormous installation based group shows are now its stock-in-trade, overseen by Rugoff and chief curator Stephanie Rosenthal.

The sprawling tableaux and ‘artists do the craziest things’ exhibitions are starting to wear a little thin, however. The gallery has been refurbished recently, and now Project Space curator Tom Morton has his own spruced-up space upstairs, too. Along with the rest of England’s public spaces, however, the Hayward hangs on the tenterhooks of the government’s financial decisions, and it’s too early to say whether the public’s recent affection for the shows there will be a supportive long-term love affair that can sustain the gallery through meagre times.