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NEWS

Walker Art Center to Commission Native American Artist Work

July 20th, 2018

Walker Art Center, via Art NewsThe Walker Art Center in Minneapolis will commission a Native artist to do a public artwork for the museum’s sculpture garden, a response to the controversy over artist Sam Durant’s Scaffold work. “We are extremely fortunate to be working with the expertise, knowledge, and creative thinking of this committee, who collectively will help bring an important new work of art to the Walker Art Center collection and to the Twin Cities,” says Siri Engberg, the Walker’s senior curator and director of exhibitions.
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Royal Academy Plans Show of Works by Bill Viola and Michelangelo

July 20th, 2018

Bill Viola, via The GuardianThe Royal Academy in London will mount a show of works by Bill Viola alongside works by Michelangelo, The Guardian reports. “I got out the Michelangelos for him, thinking they had much more connection with the themes that Bill had been exploring throughout his career,” Martin Clayton, the head of prints and drawings at the Royal Collection, says of a meeting years ago between Viola and himself, “and he was blown away by them.”
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Pace Appoints Whitney Ferrare Director of Hong Kong Space

July 20th, 2018

Whitney Ferrare, via Art NewsPace Gallery has appointed Whitney Ferrare senior director of its Hong Kong location, bringing her over from Gagosian’s Hong Kong space. “Pace is distinct for its long-held and dedicated engagement with the artists and collectors across Asia—having partnered with legendary dealer Leng Lin to be the first major Western gallery to open a space in Asia, launching Pace in Beijing in 2008,” Ferrare says. “It feels particularly momentous to join Pace as the gallery celebrates its 10th anniversary in Asia, now with galleries in Hong Kong and Seoul, as well as Beijing.”
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Andy Warhol Foundation Announces Recipients of Spring 2018 Curatorial Research Fellowships

July 20th, 2018

Rahmoun, via Art NewsThe Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts has announced the recipients of its Spring 2018 Curatorial Research Fellowships, with $295,000 split between six recipients. “These six curators are engaging with urgent cultural issues including income inequality, how we represent resistance, and how dominant narratives are shaped, and most importantly, by whom,” says Joel Wachs, the Warhol Foundation’s president.
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House Votes Down Proposal to Cut Funding for NEA

July 20th, 2018

u-s-congress-via-art-newspaperThe House of Representatives has voted down a proposal to cut funding for the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities by 15%, Variety reports. “One of the largest vote margins in support of the NEA and NEH ever, this bipartisan showing and resounding vote is a testament to the good work of the federal agencies and the power of the arts in our communities, schools, lives, and work,” says Robert Lynch, the president and CEO of Americans for the Arts.
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Art Newspaper Reports on Legacy of Robert Indiana

July 20th, 2018

artwork at artist Robert Indiana’s home CREDIT: Joel GreenbergThe Art Newspaper reports on the legacy of Robert Indiana, and the current lawsuits that could determine the fate of the late artist’s estate. A filing in Maine has sought to discover if some parties working with Indiana “may have been conveyed away or otherwise misappropriated or sold without due compensation.”
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New Entrance Drives Attendance at V&A Museum

July 19th, 2018

Victoria and Albert Museum, via Victoria and Albert MuseumA new entrance at the V&A Museum in London has led to a spike in attendance, moving against wider trends in the UK. “All the data we have shows that it is much more attractive to non-traditional museum-goers,” says museum director Tristram Hunt. “It is less, frankly, scary.”
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Creative Time Announces Lineup for Eleventh Annual Creative Time Summit

July 17th, 2018

Creative Time Gala Honoring Julian Schnabel At Domino Sugar Factory 52Creative Time has announced the lineup for the eleventh edition of the Creative Time Summit, which will set up shop in Miami this year from November 1-3.  “Fifty years after the upheavals of 1968, we continue to grapple with a host of pressing issues, from the ongoing legacies of colonialism to climate change and xenophobia,” says Creative Time executive director Justine Ludwig.  “There’s no better place for this conversation than Miami, a home to so many incredible artists, activists, and thinkers. We couldn’t be prouder to host the summit here, or of the participants and the invaluable insights they’ll be bringing to bear on some of the most critical issues of our time.”
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New York Museums to Grant Free Admission for Library Card Holders

July 17th, 2018

Guggenheim, via NYTA new initiative by New York’s library systems will grant free access to a range of NYC institutions with a library card, the New York Times reports. “Some people are intimidated by museums,” says Linda Johnson, president of the Brooklyn Public Library, said in a phone interview. “They shouldn’t be shut out of all the wonderful cultural offerings that are available to New York City dwellers.”
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Liberté Nuti Joins Hauser & Wirth as Senior Director of Impressionist & Modern Art

July 17th, 2018

Liberte Nuti, via Hauser and WirthLiberté Nuti has joined Hauser & Wirth as International Senior Director of Impressionist & Modern Art, leaving her former post as International Director of Impressionist & Modern at Christie’s. “We are thrilled to welcome Liberté Nuti as a Senior Director in London,” Iwan Wirth says. “We look forward to this next chapter in Hauser & Wirth’s evolution as the gallery’s secondary market activity comes into sharper focus.”
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REFERENCE LIBRARY

Naples – Thomas Dane – Glenn Ligon: “In Poetry, A Solution to Everything” at Thomas Dane Through July 28th, 2018

June 25th, 2018

Glenn Ligon, In Poetry, A Solution to Everything (Installation View), via Thomas Dane
Glenn Ligon, In Poetry, A Solution to Everything (Installation View), via Thomas Dane

Glenn Ligon’s first solo show in Italy, on view now at Thomas Dane, translates the poetical image into pictorial figuration, taking form around a poem by Pier Paolo Pasolini, Ma Era L’Italia, L’Italia Nuda e Formicolante, in which the poet recalls Italy in the years after the war, the cries of his generation and of ancient children, obliged to face history, a mission not based on power but on civilization. At this time, the artist cannot only be who tries to revolt the repressive system of forces. The poet lives, more than others, the agony of modernity and art. His poetry is not born from a crisis; it is the crisis itself. Read More »

New York – Marlene Dumas: “Myths and Mortals” at David Zwirner Through June 30th, 2018

June 24th, 2018

Marlene Dumas, Awkward (2018), via Art Observed
Marlene Dumas, Awkward (2018), via Art Observed

Painter Marlene Dumas’ show, Myths and Mortals, a return to David Zwirner‘s New York gallery space, comprises 22 paintings and 33 works on paper divided into three parts, showcasing the artist’s sense of narrative and interconnected meaning. The first series of works includes large scale and smaller scale oil on canvas paintings that explore the dynamics of love. The second part includes ink washes on paper depicting Shakespeare’s Venus and Adonis story, as translated by the Dutch Hafid Bouazza, and is constructed in a highly narrative style with the story moving chronologically with explicit references. The third returns to canvas and oil paintings and begins to explore the themes of Venus and Adonis although with the more general factors of romance, lust and true love. Read More »

New York – Mernet Larsen: “Situation Rooms” at James Cohan Through June 23, 2018

June 23rd, 2018

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AO Auction Recap – London: Impressionist and Modern Evening Sales, June 19th and 20th, 2018

June 22nd, 2018

Pablo Picasso, Buste de femme de profil (Femme écrivant) (1932), via Sotheby's
Pablo Picasso, Buste de femme de profil (Femme écrivant) (1932), via Sotheby’s

The month’s Impressionist and Modern Evening Sales are now in the books, after the London headquarters for both Christie’s and Sotheby’s capped their sales in the British capital.  Seizing on the recent and continued expansion of the market for works from this era in past months, the week’s sales were an often complex, confusing set of outings, as results fluctuated considerably and market health was perhaps painted as a bit unpredictable.

Joan Miro, Peinture (1933), via Sotheby's
Joan Miro, Peinture (1933), via Sotheby’s

At Sotheby’s, nearly a third of the sale’s 36 lots went unsold (10), with the final tally capped at £87,496,600.  Chief among the abortive works was a premier lot, Peinture, by Joan Miró, which stagnated on the auction block and missed its £8 to £12 million auction price, and ultimately contributed to the auction house missing out on its low estimate.  The much-trumpeted Pablo Picasso portrait of Marie-Therese, however, performed admirably, making up nearly a full third of the auction’s value with its £27,319,000 final price.  Also saving the sale was Alberto Giacometti’s Le Chat, which brought a strong price at £12,642,000.

Alberto Giacometti, Le Chat (1955), via Sotheby's
Alberto Giacometti, Le Chat (1955), via Sotheby’s

Franz Marc, Drei Pferde (1916), via Christie's
Franz Marc, Drei Pferde (1916), via Christie’s

A similar situation marked the sale at Christie’s the following evening, where a 45-lot sale achieved a final of £128,081,750.  The sale was also marked by eight unsold lots over the course of the evening, but pushed through its offering on the strength of several strong works, chief among them Claude Monet’s La Gare Saint-Lazare, which reached a price of £24,983,750, as well as Picasso’s Femme dans un fauteuil, the Dora Maar portrait that performed to expectations at a final of £19,358,750.  Another achievement came with the setting of a new auction record for Franz Marc, whose Drei Pferde easily hit £15,421,250, resetting his record.

With results like this, the market picture has grown notably cloudy, or perhaps the market is trending towards saturation, the frequent sales and frequency of blue-chip trophies changing hands making for a less appealing environment for collectors.  No matter why, the major auction houses have only a few days to reflect, as the proceedings continue next week with the Contemporary and Post-War Sales.

Claude Monet, La Gare Saint-Lazare, vue extérieure (1877), via Christie's
Claude Monet, La Gare Saint-Lazare, vue extérieure (1877), via Christie’s

Pablo Picasso, Femme dans un fauteuil (Dora Maar) (1942), via Christie's
Pablo Picasso, Femme dans un fauteuil (Dora Maar) (1942), via Christie’s

— D. Creahan

Read more:
Sotheby’s Impressionist and Modern Evening Sale [Sotheby’s]
Sotheby’s Fails to Reach Low Estimate at Modern Art Auction [Bloomberg]
Christie’s Impressionist and Modern Evening Sale [Christie’s]

 

AO Auction Preview – London: Impressionist and Modern Evening Sale, June 19th – 20th, 2018

June 19th, 2018

Pablo Picasso, Buste de femme de profil (Femme écrivant) (1932), via Sotheby's
Pablo Picasso, Buste de femme de profil (Femme écrivant) (1932), via Sotheby’s

With the bustling week of sales and exhibitions in Basel now capped, the final major auctions of the spring are set to take place in London, as two weeks of auctions will look to test the waters of a market seemingly on the rebound after a strong outing earlier this season in New York.  Beginning this week with a pair of Impressionist and Modern Sales, the week’s proceedings should make for an intriguing wrap up of the first half of 2018.   Read More »

New York – “BURNT, curated by Leo Fitzpatrick” at Marlborough Contemporary Through June 16th, 2018

June 16th, 2018

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Wendy White, American Bleach Effect (Budweiser) (2018), via Marlborough Contemporary

It’s hard to estimate Leo Fitzpatrick’s impact on the course of Marlborough Contemporary’s programming.  The director, who joined the gallery in 2015, has dipped his toes into any number of puddles over the course of his time with the gallery, yet always bringing an equally studied and adventurous approach to curation across the gallery’s two story exhibition space. The shows have twisted in and out of the gallery’s broader curatorial vision, pulling both from the deeper reaches of contemporary art history and from the gallery’s list of frequent collaborators.  For his most recent exhibition project, BURNT, Fitzpatrick continues this trend, inviting a broad swath of artists to a show that manages to both unite diverse voices and focus them towards the modern American cultural landscape.  Read More »

New York — Liu Wei: “180 Faces” at Sean Kelly Through June 16th, 2018

June 15th, 2018

Liu Wei, 180 Faces, 2017-2018 10 (detail of a work  in  10  parts)  All images © Liu Wei Courtesy: Sean Kelly, New York and AYE Gallery, Beijing
Liu Wei, 180 Faces (detail) (2017-2018)All images © Liu Wei Courtesy: Sean Kelly, New York and AYE Gallery, Beijing

Sean Kelly’s exhibition of 180 small scale portraits by Chinese artist Liu Wei offers an intimate and thought-provoking survey into the psychological layers of portraiture, a genre almost as archaic as art history itself.  Entitled 180 Faces, the exhibition of modest scale portraits of anonymous individuals are hung akin to the style of the salon, with a twist on the traditional display fashion as the frames’ sleek surfaces blend into the gallery’s contemporary white-cube interior. Read More »

AO On-Site – Basel: Liste Art Fair at Warteck Through June 17th, 2018

June 13th, 2018

Megan Marrin at David Lewis, via Art Observed
Megan Marrin at David Lewis, via Art Observed

Offering a fitting counterpoint to the expanses of the Messe Basel, Liste Art Fair has returned to Warteck, a former schoolhouse on the banks of the Rhine now serving as an exhibition and performance space, for another year of exhibitions showcasing adventurous and exploratory proects from a range of galleries around the globe.  Liste continues to build on its position as one of the central hubs for the week of Art Basel, priding itself on a careful curation of young galleries, dynamic, forward-thinking works, and a roster of performances that remains one of the week’s main draws.

Edouard Montassut, via Edouard Montassut
Edouard Montassut, via Edouard Montassut

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AO On-Site – Basel: Art Basel Art Fair, June 14th – 17th, 2018

June 13th, 2018

Robert Longo, Death Star, all photos via Ben Krieglstein for Art Observed
Robert Longo, Death Star, all photos via Ben Krieglstein for Art Observed

Art Basel has opened its doors, kicking off a marathon week of sales and shows in the Swiss city that marks another year for the landmark giant of contemporary and modern art selling.  Marking the terminus for the first half of the year’s major primary market activity, the fair once again showed why its impressive scale and appointments makes it such a draw for collectors, artists and dealers.

Carol Bove at Unlimited
Carol Bove at Unlimited Read More »

NEW YORK – NICK CAVE: “THE LET GO” AT PARK AVENUE ARMORY THROUGH  JULY 1ST, 2018

June 11th, 2018

Nick Cave, The Let Go (2018), via Greem Jellyfish for Art Observed
Nick Cave, The Let Go (2018), all images via Greem Jellyfish for Art Observed

“Back in the day the club was my safe place-and losing myself on the dance floor has always kept me centered.”

The Let Go is artist Nick Cave’s new work at Park Avenue Armory, a multi-sensory performance using visual works, sounds, and movement to transform the Armory into a dance-based town hall aimed at bringing together visitors, performers, DJs, dancers and community members to participate in a collective act of catharsis. The audience is asked to let go of frustration and negativity, and to uplift one another as they participate in this powerful socially-engaged piece.  Stringing together a series of interrelated works, The Let Go is bounded by the installation Chase, and where a performance titled The Up Right, featuring one of Cave’s signature Sound Suits, is activated by a jazz keyboardist, choir and opera singer. Concluding the performance,  the “town hall” becomes a dance hall, complete with DJ. Read More »