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Curator Vincent Honoré’s Suicide Labeled a ‘Work Accident’

The suicide of Vincent Honoré, a well-known French curator who served as head of exhibitions at the MO.CO Montpellier museum, was the subject of a three-month investigation, according to Le Quotidien de l’Art.

The French art publication reported that Caisse primaire d’assurances maladie, a public health organization that is part of the nation’s social security system, has now concluded that inquiry, and deemed Honoré’s suicide a “work accident.” That label allows his family the possibility to seek criminal charges against MO.CO.

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A representative for MO.CO told Le Quotidien de l’Art that the museum “vigorously contests this decision and has filed an appeal.”

A MO.CO spokesperson did not respond to a request for comment from ARTnews.

Honoré died by suicide this past November, leaving the French art world in shock. He had been head of exhibitions at MO.CO since 2019, and had before that been senior curator at London’s Hayward Gallery.

The Le Quotidien de l’Art report features allegations that there were tensions between Honoré and museum management just before his suicide. The publication quoted written communication between him and an unnamed friend the day before he died. He reportedly wrote that he was “trapped” at the museum and that he “will not be able to leave.”

The MO.CO statement provided to Le Quotidien de l’Art said that the museum conducted a survey about the psychological health of workers there following Honoré’s suicide and determined that 90 percent of respondents were “satisfied” with their conditions.

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