The director of a £46m arts centre on Tyneside, has quit to head one of Eastern Europe's largest contemporary art houses.
In March it was revealed visitor numbers had fallen by 11%
Peter Doroshenko became the third director of Gateshead's Baltic complex when he took up the post two years ago.
Now it has emerged he has been named president and artistic director of the Pinchuk Art Centre in Kiev.
The Pinchuk, which opened a year ago, is the first large-scale contemporary art centre in Ukraine.
Baltic opened in July 2002 and is attracting about 400,000 visitors a year.
Mr Doroshenko, an American of Ukrainian descent, said he believed he had left Baltic a more "approachable and visitor friendly place".
Recently, the Baltic was rocked by a child porn probe, when Northumbria Police began an investigation after a photograph owned by Sir Elton John was seized from an art exhibition at the centre.
The photo, Klara and Edda Belly Dancing by American Nan Goldin, was withdrawn the day before it was due to go on display.
The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) decided it was not indecent.
Baltic chairman, Sir Ian Wrigglesworth, said: "Peter has produced an exciting and, at times, controversial programme of exhibitions.
"It will be a challenge for to us to maintain that level of activity and interest in future years."
Mr Doroshenko added: "I think we have made Baltic a much more approachable and visitor friendly place, which has greatly extended its activities in education and in the community."