Museum Pioneer Thomas Hoving Dead at 78
He transformed role of curator while at the Met
By M. Morris,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 10, 2009 1:36 PM CST
1965: The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City.   (Getty Images)
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(Newser) – Thomas Hoving, who helped transform the role of museum curator in his decade at the helm of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, died today. He was 78 and suffered from cancer. "I'm a goner,” he had told author Michael Gross, who broke the news on his blog this morning. “But I have no regrets. I’ve had a terrific life."

Hoving took over the Met in 1966, at 35 the venerable institution's youngest director ever. He vastly expanded the hidebound museum's collections, introducing contemporary art and overseeing the installation of the Temple of Dendur in its own glass-walled wing. But his longest-lasting legacy is the blockbuster touring exhibition, which Hoving and J. Carter Brown of the National Gallery of Art in Washington pioneered, the New York Times notes.