CSFAC Director Leaves…for Armenia

Westword, CO
Aug 10 2007

CSFAC Director Leaves…for Armenia
Fri Aug 10, 2007 at 09:18:55 AM

In what has got to be described as shocking news, Michael De Marsche
resigned as director of the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center on
August 9, just seven days after the new David Owen Tryba-designed
wing was unveiled.

Even more shocking is why: He’s becoming the new director of the
Gerald L. Cafesjian Museum Foundation in Yerevan, Armenia! I couldn’t
make this stuff up.

Yerevan, by the way, is the capitol of the country, and the
foundation, established by entrepreneur Cafesjian, is currently
constructing a huge new cultural facility that will serve as a
permanent home for his extensive collection of modern art as well as
a venue for traveling exhibitions.

During his four-year tenure at the CSFAC, De Marsche led a major
turnaround for the Southern Colorado institution, spiking attendance
and membership, establishing the FAC Modern downtown annex, and
shepherding the restoration of the original John Gaw Meem building
and the construction of the Tryba wing.

Some of his decisions were controversial — especially the loss of
the library and the expanded definition of the Taylor Museum, which
was limited to Native American and Hispanic material and now
encompasses all the art the CSFAC owns. But all and all, he changed
the CSFAC for the better.

De Marsche’s last day will be September 1, just a few weeks away —
and in the meantime he’s on vacation.

In the short statement released by the board of trustees, which
though not terse was also noticeably unenthusiastic concerning De
Marsche’s many accomplishments, it was announced that the search for
his replacement would begin immediately. – Michael Paglia