Night at the Museum



The expanded museum should put Raleigh on the map as a destination for travelers. Any tips for visitors?
Come in a cool state of mind. You can have a really fabulous weekend here if you plan it out. There are really first-rate cultural institutions here, like the Nasher Museum of Art at Duke, the Ackland Art Museum in Chapel Hill. Go to historic Hillsboro, which is a short distance from Chapel Hill. There are great restaurants, like Bonne Soiree in Chapel Hill and Poole’s, which is very gay-friendly. Explore the lakes and parks and that sort of thing if you‘re of a recreational mind. You can also have a really great weekend experience if you’re gay. There’s gay nightlife here, and a sort of groovy night scene in Raleigh. There’s good music. In Glenwood South, there are all kinds of clubs and restaurants bunched together. Just keep in mind the Triangle’s not urban; it’s a driving experience. You need to rent a car.

You and your partner of 16 years [interior designer Don Doskey] met in Cleveland, where he still lives. How do you manage the long-distance thing?
Don comes in about every two weeks, or we travel together to New York or L.A. or wherever I’m doing business. He just announced that he’s moving here this summer. He’s giving up the lease on his office space in Cleveland. We’re like, "Oh, my God." You live in a space one way, and that’s going to require some adjustments all the way around. But I’m very happy about it. We suit each other.

What’s your proudest achievement as NCMA’s director?
I’m proudest of the gateways I’ve created for people into the museum. I’ve created a park. I’m proud of expanding a major performing arts and film program that brings people here in a comfortable way. I’m very proud of a special exhibition program that excites people. Everything I’m most proud of has that public dimension to it.

With that in mind, have you ever considered a run for public office? You seem like one of the most connected people in Raleigh.
[Laughs] No, I’ve never considered running for office. I’ve flirted with the idea, but let’s face it — the people aren’t going to elect me. I would not subject myself to journalistic scrutiny at that level.

Tags: Art