The end of the Corcoran is nigh


The Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington’s first art museum, could end its run as an independent institution after 150 years. (Karen Bleier/AFP/Getty Images)

Years of uncertainty about the future of the Corcoran Gallery of Art ended Wednesday, with the unveiling of a plan that will keep most of the gallery’s art in Washington and will keep its associated school of art and design thriving — but will mean the end of the Corcoran as an independent institution after nearly 150 years. The school would become part of George Washington University, which could also take over the historic Beaux-Arts building on 17th Street NW; the collection would go to the National Gallery of Art, which would keep the best pieces for itself and donate the rest to other collections. The plan remains subject to approval from the boards of all three institutions. The preservation of the school and the art is a good thing, Post critic Philip Kennicott writes: “But this is not a swallowing of the Corcoran — this is the end of the Corcoran and its final dismemberment.”

In other news:

To highlight cabbies’ aversion to credit cards, Mary Cheh recounts daughter’s “kidnapping” (PostWAMU-FMWUSA-TV)

Marion Barry is out of the hospital after eight-day stay, now back in physical therapy (AP)

Vincent Gray wants emergency vote giving city more power to keep families out of shelter beds (Post)

New data shows just how few D.C. children attend their in-boundary public school (Post)

Judge who heard worker’s comp cases for years did not have a law license (City Paper)

Muriel Bowser pushes to loosen Metro hiring policy on ex-offenders (Dr. GridlockDCistWJLA-TV)

A potentially violent St. Elizabeths patient has been missing for two months (Post)

St. E’s tightens exit protocols after inmate’s death in snowstorm (WaTimes)

Tony Cheng and son reject plea deal; case likely to go to trial in May (Post)

Gray dodges snow bullet (Loose Lips)

State of the District speech is coming March 3 (DCist)

City crews have dumped 35,000 tons of salt on D.C. streets so far this winter (WAMU-FM)

Nearly 1,000 vehicles were ticketed in snow emergency zones; many were towed (WaTimes)

Uncleared sidewalk may be to blame for pedestrian’s death on Sousa Bridge (WRC-TV)

Charter board puts off vote on closing Options PCS, pending public hearing (Post)

Anacostia woman’s struggle to get handgun transferred from Texas is at center of Supreme Court case (WaTimes)

DCHA’s capital needs are $1.3 billion, and the feds aren’t helping much (Housing Complex)

The day in campaign videos: Gray is “One of Our Own”; Vincent Orange can dance (Loose LipsDCist)

Mayoral candidates talk planning and architecture (Loose Lips)

Erstwhile mayoral candidate Leo Alexander is now working for Andy Shallal (Loose Lips)

New assistant fire chief delivers frank review of FEMS performance (WJLA-TV)

Frequent objection to zoning rewrite: Why did Georgetown get special treatment? (Current via Dish)

D.C. Water rejects relocation site, potentially delaying ballpark-area redevelopment (WBJ)

David Catania, D.C. Vote’s Kim Perry head to New Hampshire today to testify in favor of voting-rights resolution (AP)

Jonetta Rose Barras is “flummoxed” by Eleanor Holmes Norton’s warnings on tuition-grant funding (Post column)

LGBT groups urge Cathy Lanier to release report on handling of alleged hate crimes (WRC-TV)

Chris Brown assault case returns to Superior Court today, without Chris Brown (Post)

Firefighter’s complaints about death threats lead to Secret Service investigation (WTTG-TVWJLA-TV)

Dunbar teacher is handcuffed and held by transit cop in front of students (WRC-TV)

Big after-school fight at Anacostia High (WJLA-TV)

The latest on the north-south streetcar planning (GGW)

The Ward 6 council candidates talk transportation (GGW)

Body of middle-aged man is pulled from Anacostia (Post)

About 1,000 Hill staffers attend Norton-sponsored “Ask Me About D.C.” event (WAMU-FMWJLA-TV)

More than 3,000 used the St. Elizabeths ice slide (DCist)

“Gateway Pavilion” operator is fired (WBJ)

It took a long time for the Pennsylvania Avenue bike lane to get plowed (DCist)

Arts commission backs 25 new public art installations, coming later this year (DCist)

Star bartender gets three more months to fight deportation (Post)

Mike DeBonis covers local politics and government for The Washington Post. He also writes a blog and a political analysis column that runs on Fridays.
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