Global contemporary art events and news observed from New York City. Suggestion? Email us.
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Swiss Prosecutor Drops Investigation of Dealer Yves Bouvier

September 21st, 2021

The Geneva public prosecutor has dropped a criminal investigation into the operations of Swiss art dealer Yves Bouvier, the NYT reports. “Although there are still some gray areas as to the legal nature of the relationship between the parties, even on the assumption that Yves Bouvier was the agent of the complainants, the objective constituent elements of the offense have not been met,” the ruling reads.
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Met Museum to Sell Off Set of Prints and Photos to Cover Budget Shortfall

September 21st, 2021

The Met will sell off more than 200 prints and photos from its collection to raise funds amid a budget shortfall caused by the pandemic. “The Museum approaches deaccessioning with the same degree of strategy and deliberation as we apply to acquisitions “It will take years until we can expect the full return of tourism revenue,” says director Max Hollien.
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John Booth Takes Chair at National Gallery London

September 21st, 2021

John Booth, the venture capitalist and major donor to the Tory party is the new chair of the National Gallery. “I’m delighted to take up this role as the National Gallery prepares to celebrate its 200th anniversary in 2024,” Booth says. “The gallery’s amazing collection, including so many of the world’s greatest paintings, belongs to the whole nation and we look forward to sharing it afresh with visitors as we emerge from the pandemic, and as we continue to grow our international digital presence.”
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Fondation Louis Vuitton Prepares for Ambitious Show of Russian Collection

September 20th, 2021

As the Fondation Louis Vuitton prepares to show the collection of Russian brothers Ivan andMikhail Morozov. “Without this collaboration and huge program of restoration, it was impossible to organize the exhibition,” says advisor Jean-Paul Claverie.
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Faith Ringgold to Open New Museum Retrospective Next Year

September 15th, 2021

Faith Ringgold will have her first New York retrospective at the New Museum in 2022. 
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MOCA Names Johanna Burton as Sole Director as Klaus Biesenbach Departs

September 15th, 2021

The Museum of Contemporary Art has announced that Johanna Burton will now serve as the sole and first female director of the museum, as Klaus Biesenbach heads to Neue Nationalgalerie in Berlin. “We congratulate Klaus on the honor of being appointed as the director of the Neue Nationalgalerie in Berlin,” reads a MOCA statement. “We wish him the best and thank him for his contributions to MOCA.”
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Amsterdam Will Return Kandinsky to Heirs of Jewish Owner Who Sold During Holocaust

September 4th, 2021

After a sit-down between the mayor of Amsterdam and the heirs of a Jewish owner of a Kandinsky work hanging in the the Stedelijk, the city has announced it will return the work to the family. “This is a historic injustice that is being put right,” says the family’s lawyer, Simon van der Sluijs.
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Ullens Center for Contemporary Art to Open Chengdu Location

September 4th, 2021

Beijing’s UCCA Center for Contemporary Art will open a new location in the Sichuan province of Chengdu, the Art Newspaper reports.  “Chengdu is one of the most exciting and rapidly growing cities in China and we have been closely following its development and accomplishments in the arts in recent years,” says UCCA director and chief executive Philip Tinari. 
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Johanna Burton Joins MOCA as Executive Director

September 4th, 2021

Johanna Burton has been named the new executive director of the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles. “MOCA’s artist-centered mission dovetails with my own commitment to creating platforms that foster artistic innovation and emphasize deep connections to audiences,” she says in a statement. “By pursuing these goals and supporting the efforts of MOCA’s team, I’m looking forward to extending the museum’s legacy while strengthening bonds both within the institution and with the public.”
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Art Newspaper Charts Restrictions, Pressure for Art Basel’s 2021 Edition

September 4th, 2021

The Art Newspaper reports on the increasingly strict restrictions on travel into Switzerland for Art Basel this year, and the increasing pressure to postpone or cancel the event. 
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REFERENCE LIBRARY

AO On-Site – Basel, Switzerland: Art Basel 2021, September 24th – 26th, 2021

September 23rd, 2021

Elaine Cameron-Weir at JTT, via Art Observed
Elaine Cameron-Weir at JTT, via Art Observed

After a trying year in the art world, and a rigorous series of precautionary measures, the 2021 edition of Art Basel has opened its doors for its early hours, preparing for a public opening this weekend with an expansive offering of works from European galleries and those further afield. Coupled with the fair’s ongoing “Art Basel OVR” project, this year’s live edition of the fair returns its physical model, inviting over 250 leading galleries and more than 4,000 artists from five continents, on view both on-site and online. Open once again at the Messe Basel, the fair continues its reputation as a flagship for the international fair brand.  Read More »

AO On-Site — New York: Independent Fair, September 9-12th, 2021

September 20th, 2021

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Leilah Babirye at Gordon Robichaux, via Art Observed

Art-goers descended upon Cipriani South Street in the newly renovated Battery Maritime Building last week for the much anticipated 12th installation of the Independent Art Fair, which opened in New York on September 9th. Formerly located at Spring Studios in Tribeca, the fair has garnered a reputation as a reliable source of fresh talent, and took up new residence  this year within the spacious corridors of the historic waterfront locale at the lower tip of Manhattan.

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AO On-Site — New York: Armory Show, September 9-12, 2021

September 15th, 2021

Wendy Red Star
Wendy Red Star at Sargent’s Daughters, via Art Observed

This past weekend, New Yorkers flocked to the Javits Center, not for COVID-19 vaccinations, but rather for the much-anticipated Armory Show, which made its return after last year’s cancelled edition, and which marked the first major art fair in the United States since the pandemic struck. In the wake of lockdown, following an extended period of postponed events and online viewing rooms, eager art-goers packed into the Javits Center, where the fair is now located. In the spacious, newly renovated convention center along the Hudson River, the fair presented more than 150 booths, with more than 40 international galleries. Serving as a fixture of modern and contemporary art, the fair kicked off the New York art world’s busiest week of the season—Armory Week. Read More »

New York – “The De Luxe Show” at Karma Through September 25th, 2021

September 14th, 2021

Anthony Caro, The Bull (1970), via Karma
Anthony Caro, The Bull (1970), via Karma

Currently on at its New York gallery space, Karma has partnered with Parker Gallery to present a contemporary bicoastal tribute to The De Luxe Show, the landmark 1971 exhibition at the DeLUXE theater in Houston, in honor of its 50th anniversary. Presented in both LA and New York, the show offers a unique exploration of the show and its impact nation wide.

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Newburgh, NY — Martin Roth: “From 2017-2021 Martin Roth transformed a ruin into a garden for a plant concert” with Strongroom Through October, 2021

September 8th, 2021

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Martin Roth, From 2017-2021 Martin Roth transformed a ruin into a garden for a plant concert (2021), via Art Observed

Throughout the course of his artistic practice, the late Martin Roth channeled nature as an active creative agent, using plants and flowers as instrumental collaborators in his practice. In 2017, Roth envisioned the transformation of an abandoned nineteenth-century historical structure into an immersive public garden, a “plant concert hall.”  Though the artist passed away before the enactment of his project, the Newburgh, New York-based Strongroom—a non-profit arts organization—executed his plans this summer. Strongroom presented the site-specific installation during the second installation of Upstate Art Weekend 2021, the three-day self-directed event celebrating the arts in the Hudson Valley.

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Martin Roth, Installation View (2021), via Art Observed

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New York – Martine Syms: “Loot Sweet” at Bridget Donahue Through September 25th, 2021

September 7th, 2021


Martine Syms, Loot Sweets (Installation View), via Bridget Donahue
Martine Syms, Loot Sweets (Installation View), via Bridget Donahue

Martine Syms has built a reputation for a practice of elevating the material of everyday life. Using repurposed contexts and personal materials, the artist’s videos and physical work use text and other items to create dense narratives the flitter around the edges of the work on view. For her show at Bridget Donahue, on view through the middle of September, the artist presents an intriguing selection of new pieces that continue this exploration.  Read More »

Catskill, NY — NADA x Foreland: Upstate Art Weekend, August 28th-29th, 2021

September 7th, 2021

Hugo Montoya-NADA-Foreland
Hugo Montoya, How ya like me now? (2019), via Art Observed

For the second installation of Upstate Art Weekend, the New Art Dealers Alliance (NADA) presented a collaborative exhibition at Foreland, a new contemporary arts campus in the Hudson River Valley. Co-organized by curator Jesse Greenberg of JAG Projects, NADA x Foreland showcased works from over 100 artists presented by 81 galleries, nonprofits and artist-run spaces selected through an open call. While celebrating the rich cultural legacy of the Hudson River Valley, Upstate Art Weekend aimed to cultivate community and collaboration in the wake of lockdown, as the art world begins to reopen. While exhibitors ranged from Dubai to Guatemala City to Bucharest, NADA x Foreland focused on artists from New York State, with particular attention to the Upstate region. The works were not displayed in booths, but rather arranged together within the newly restored Civil-War-era spaces of the Foreland campus on the bank of Catskill Creek. Read More »

Paris – Damien Hirst: “Cherry Blossoms” at Fondation Cartier Through January 2nd, 2021

September 6th, 2021

Damien Hirst, Cherry Blossoms (Installation View), via Fondation Cartier
Damien Hirst, Cherry Blossoms (Installation View), via Fondation Cartier

The flood of recent work on view by Damien Hirst suggests an artist in the midst of a bout of inspiration, pumping out a broad range of works that underscore his roving interests and consistency in vision across paintings, sculpture and photography. Yet his most recent series, Cherry Blossoms, on view at Fondation Cartier this summer, sees something of a step into a more contemplative mode, a point of reflection around which so many frenetically-charged recent works seem to orbit.  The exhibition presents 30 paintings chosen by the artist among the 107 canvases of the series, all large-format. Read More »

New York – Matthew Wong: “Footprints in the Wind: Ink Drawings 2013-2017″ at Cheim & Read Through September 3rd, 2021

September 3rd, 2021

Matthew Wong, Untitled (2015), via Cheim & Read
Matthew Wong, Untitled (2015), via Cheim & Read

Since his sudden death in 2019, the work of painter Matthew Wong has only grown in recognition and reputation, building on an impressively diverse and evocative approach to art-making that underscores the artist’s self-taught method and brilliant eye. This self-taught exploration of the artist’s work is at the core of a new show at Cheim & Read in Chelsea, where the artist’s Ink Drawings, some of his first ventures into painting, are currently on view. Running through September 11th, the show offers a look at Wong’s early output, and the germinal state of his vision as an artist.  Read More »

New York – Cady Noland: “The Clip-On Method” at Galerie Buchholz Through September 11th, 2021

August 30th, 2021

Cady Noland, The Clip-On Method (Installation View), via Art Observed
Cady Noland, The Clip-On Method (Installation View), via Art Observed

On view this summer in New York, artist Cady Noland has opened a show of new works at Galerie Buchholz in conjunction with a two volume publication of the artist’s work and writing, both of which are unified under the title The Clip-On Method. The show, offering a rare chance to see Noland’s work in person, continues her incisive and often confrontation exploration of violence and power in the American psyche, and its effects. Read More »