Toronto’s 50 Most Influential: #37, Joshua Basseches
37It’s Basseches’ job to re-establish the ROM as a leading cultural hub in Toronto. After accepting the top job at the end of 2015, he revived the Welcome Project, a radical makeover for the ROM, with a ground-floor café, repurposed lobby and re-opened east entrance. Basseches has suggested that he’ll de-emphasize traditional exhibitions and instead foster experiences that guests can curate themselves. The renovations will be pricy, but Basseches helped raise more than $600 million during a capital campaign at the Peabody Essex Museum in Massachusetts, so he knows how to whip up support.
He’s creating an outdoor performance space, commissioning public art installations and debuting two exhibits—Iris van Herpen: Transforming Fashion and Philip Beesley: Intimate Veils.