Perhaps it’s a celebratory present to itself — the acquisition comes as Artforum, founded in 1962, celebrates its 60th anniversary. David Velasco has served as editor in chief of the publication since the fall of 2017.
PMC, based in L.A. and New York, also owns Rolling Stone, Billboard and Women’s Wear Daily, as well as the entertainment trade publications Variety and the Hollywood Reporter, among other major print and digital outlets — more than 20 media brands in all.
Penske Media Chairman and Chief Executive Jay Penske called Artforum’s art world authority “unparalleled” in the announcement.
“Over the last 60 years,” he said of Artforum, “they have built a culture and genre-defining brand known around the world, with one of the few insightful global perspectives on art.”
Danielle McConnell and Kate Koza serve as Artforum publisher and associate publisher, respectively.
McConnell said the magazine’s biggest priority would be maintaining “the continued legacy of our print publication while ensuring a vigorous digital expansion.” PMC’s “media infrastructure,” he added, will help amplify opportunities for that.
How will the Penske family art publications divvy up the art world and will one assert editorial influence over another?
“Artforum will remain editorially independent of other Penske Media brands,” the company said, “including existing titles ARTnews [founded in 1902] and Art in America [founded in 1913].”
In 2020, PMC joined up with MRC entertainment studio to create two joint ventures. PMRC (managed by PMC) brings together the two entities’ entertainment magazines and the MRC-managed venture creates intellectual property from across the publications for new TV, film and live events opportunities.
Earlier in 2020, PMC further expanded into the live-event space, taking a stake in event management and technical production agency LDJ Productions.
Penske founded PMC in 2003. The company acquired ARTnews and Art in America in 2018.