Original story follows:
Allyson Pittman, public-relations manager for the Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis, says the scuttlebutt making the rounds in the local art community this week is false: CAM's director, Paul Ha, is not leaving for a new job at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
"It's not true," Pittman says. "I don't know where your sources got their information. We haven't heard anything."
So that's that.
Ha joined CAM in August 2002, arriving from the Yale University Art Gallery, where he'd served as deputy director of programs and external affairs. During his tenure in St. Louis, Ha has overseen the completion of CAM's $6 million home in Grand Center and helped the center maintain financial stability.
In 2007 the museum's balanced books earned it a $5 million pat on the back from philanthropist Emily Rauh Pulitzer, whose Pulitzer Foundation for the Arts happens to be CAM's next-door neighbor on Washington Boulevard.
The List Visual Arts Center has been advertising a job opening for a director since April, when Jane Farver retired after twelve years at the helm. According to the List's website, the museum's mission is to "explore challenging, intellectually inquisitive, contemporary art making in all media" in the same way that "MIT pushes at the frontiers of scientific inquiry." Voicemail messages left with the center have yet to be returned.
Ha, 48, likewise has not returned calls requesting comment. Of course, CAM celebrates its season opening tonight with two new exhibits, so folks are pretty busy over there.