'Artforum' EIC Fired After Signing Open Letter On Mideast War

David Velasco was fired as editor in chief of Artforum on Thursday for signing — and publishing on the Artforum website — an open letter commenting on the Israel-Hamas war. 

The Oct. 19 letter was “shared on Artforum’s website and social platforms without our, or the requisite senior members of the editorial team’s, prior knowledge,” publishers Danielle McConnell and Kate Koza said in a post. “This was not consistent with Artforum’s editorial process.” 

They continued, “The open letter was widely misinterpreted as a statement from the magazine about highly sensitive and complex geopolitical circumstances. While a meaningful expression of advocacy from a large group of people in our community, the letter as it appeared on our platforms lacked the necessary context to make clear that it originated from outside the magazine.” 



The post did not mention Velasco’s departure. But he addressed the matter in an email, according to The New York Times. 

“I have no regrets,” Velasco said. “I’m disappointed that a magazine that has always stood for freedom of speech and the voices of artists has bent to outside pressure.” 

Initially, the letter omitted mention of the Oct. 7 attack by Hamas, but that was later added after criticism, the Times reports.   

Velasco has been editor in chief for six years, and has served at the magazine since 2005. 



Next story loading loading..