Despite widespread austerity measures across the Eurozone, many European nations are still heavily investing in national pavilions at this year’s prestigious Venice Biennale. Countries like Greece, the UK and Germany have earmarked comparable funds to their respective 2011 pavilions, despite budgetary constraints. ”The participating countries will always put resources towards the realisation of their exhibitions in the national pavilions, or find other sources to cover the costs.” Says Jewish Museum deputy director Jens Hoffmann. Read More »
New York Magazine has published a thorough analysis of the inspirations behind Edward Hopper’s iconic painting, Nighthawks. Scouring the artist’s former midtown haunts, the article traces influences from the Flatiron Building’s curved window display to the storefronts of Greenwich avenue. “People want to find the real diner, but Hopper was a synthesizer,” says Carter Foster, the Whitney Museum curator who is preparing to open “Hopper Drawing,” a new show examining the artist’s creative practice. Read More »
Sotheby’s hosted its contemporary evening auctions last night, with Principal Auctioneer and Head of Contemporary art Tobias Meyer coaxing the audience through the sales with high energy and style. The sale, which totaled at $293.6 million, trumps last year’s spring auction of $266.6 million, while falling short of the auction house’s record high of $375 million last November. Read More »
Paul McCarthy’s 80-ft inflatable balloon dog, which welcomed visitors to the Frieze New York Art Fair last week, has sold for $950,000, dealers at Hauser and Wirth have confirmed. The piece commanded a fair amount of attention just outside Frieze’s main entrance. The other highly-noted work, Tino Seghal’s Ann Lee, also sold, commanding a price of $80,000. Read More »
New York – “Jay Defeo: A Retrospective” at The Whitney Museum of American Art Through June 2nd, 2013May 15th, 2013
The story of painter Jay DeFeo, and her landmark work The Rose, has become something of a legend in the annals of American contemporary art. The work took over 8 years to complete, constructed through the continuous process of painting and chiseling at the canvas until its weight reached nearly one ton, and its removal from her apartment necessitated the removal of an exterior wall. Buried in storage for years at the Pasadena Museum of Art, the piece was nearly lost to antiquity before being rediscovered behind a hastily erected wall, and rushed to preservation. Now The Rose has returned to the spotlight, the centerpiece of a massive retrospective of the work of DeFeo, currently on view at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York. Read More »
The Vatican City will be sponsoring pavilion at the Venice Biennale this year, and has just announced its list of exhibited artists, featuring photographer Josef Koudelka, multimedia group Studio Azzurro and the artist Lawrence Carroll. The pavilion, organized by Cardinal Gianfranco Ravasi, will explore themes of “Creation, De-Creation and Re-Creation.” “We want to create an atmosphere of dialogue between art and faith,” Cardinal Ravasi said. Read More »
Actor Leonardo DiCaprio’s charity foundation held a charity auction this week at Christie’s, in New York, realizing a staggering $38.5 Million in sales, and surging past estimates of $13-18 Million. Benefitting several conservation projects for endangered species around the world, the auction allowed money paid over the estimated value to be counted as a tax deductible contribution, encouraging rampant spending that set impressive auction records for artists Rob Pruitt, Robert Longo, Mark Grotjahn, and several others. As DiCaprio said before the event began: “bid as if the fate of the planet depends on us.” Read More »
The Guardian reports on Damien Hirst’s recent appearance on BBC Radio 4′s Desert Island Discs, where the artist admitted to getting so drunk after winning the Turner Prize’s £20,000 grand prize that he woke up in the morning forgetting where he had left the check. Measuring his creative successes against the dangerous lives of Romantic-era legends like Egon Schiele and Joseph Turner, the newspaper uses Hirst to question the nature of the artist in an increasingly stabile, safe society. Read More »
Luxury aviation company VistaJet recently commissioned artist Tom Sachs, working in collaboration with former assistant Van Neistat, to create a series of flight safety videos to be shown onboard the company’s fleet of airplanes. Taking inspiration from Todd Haynes’s 1987 cult classic Superstar: The Karen Carpenter Story, which was shot with a cast of only Barbie dolls, the duo created a short using stop motion and dolls to reconceptualize the traditional airline safety film. Read More »
Recessed from the common spiral of the Guggenheim, in one of its smaller gallery spaces, the museum is presenting I M U U R 2, the 2012 Hugo Boss Prize-winning installation by Vietnamese-German artist Danh Vo, who has amassed an array of objects and keepsakes as a sociological experiment and homage to painter Martin Wong.
The Ammersee home of German painter Georg Baselitz has been raided by German tax officials, who seized several crates of files as part of investigation into tax evasion. The artist was implicated in tax dodging after his name appeared on a list of secret bank account holders with the Swiss bank UBS. Baselitz had been quoted earlier this year as saying: ”Despite all the taxes people pay, there supposedly isn’t any money in this country for art.” Read More »
Jean-Michel Basquiat’s Hannibal, seized by U.S. authorities during the investigation of Brazilian collector, former banker and convicted embezzler Edemar Cid Ferreira, has cast light on the use of fine art as an outlet for money laundering. The current market for blue-chip fine art is often conducted with few questions asked, opening the door for an easy disposal of illicitly got income. ”You can have a transaction where the seller is listed as ‘private collection’ and the buyer is listed as ‘private collection,’ ” says Sharon Cohen Levin, chief of the asset forfeiture unit of the United States attorney’s office. “In any other business, no one would be able to get away with this.” Read More »
Financial Times reports on the growing popularity of performance works at major art fairs, helping the traditionally market-centered proceedings to rebrand themselves as cultural events. The trend is especially notable at this year’s edition of Frieze New York, where nearly every piece covering the fair has reported on Tino Seghal’s Ann Lee, of particular note because the work is sold via oral contract, in which Seghal explains to the buyer how to re-enact the work. “I’m an expert and even I get tired after seeing 180 booths. But performance can capture viewers’ attention.” Says Frieze Projects curator Cecilia Alemani. Read More »
Tate Britain has recently hung a pair of paintings by British artist Mary Beale, depicting her young son, as part of the museum’s efforts to get more female artists on its gallery walls. The effort has already brought out a number of rarely seen works from the museum’s collection, and falls in line with museum’s new chronological hanging strategy. ”We are aware that in the past we have under-achieved in presenting the work of women artists,” says head of displays Chris Stephens. “This time in every section we have looked at all the women artists in the collection, and asked why not?, instead of why?” Read More »
Following MoMA’s announced re-evaluation of its plan to demolish the former American Folk Art Museum, The New York Times has published an editorial examining the Museum’s impact on Midtown, and the distinct design of the Folk Art Museum in contrast with MoMA’s sleek facade, and the problems MoMA’s design currently presents for the art it exhibits. “Economic development encourages the proliferation of glass giants, tourism and ever bigger museums, but not always smart streets or better culture.” says writer Michael Kimmelman. Read More »
Gavin Brown’s west-side gallery is currently playing home to a new set of works by artist Elizabeth Peyton, continuing the artist’s ongoing series of portraiture through a series of works taken from the New York Metropolitan Opera, as well as Peyton’s well-documented self-portraits and depictions of celebrities. Read More »
After last week’s busy schedule of fairs (Frieze, Collective Design Fair, Pulse, Nada, Wishmeme, Cutlog, and many more) the contemporary art hub of New York City will serve as the stage for another set of high-profile art sales this week, as Christie’s, Sotheby’s and Phillips host their Evening Post-war and Contemporary Art Sales. Sotheby’s will hold their sale of 64 lots on May 14th, Christie’s on the 15th with 72 lots and Phillips on the 16th with 38 lots, featuring the familiar auctions and price tags for by Jean-Michel Basquiat, Andy Warhol, Gerhard Richter and Agnes Martin, alongside a number of newcomers and unique pieces that define this month’s evening auctions as a major event.
Gerhard Richter, Domplatz Mailand (1968), courtesy of Sotheby’s Read More »
The Art Newspaper has published an article by Whatever Press on the increasing clout of art fairs worldwide, noting the diverse contemporary art offerings for visitors, bringing galleries from around the world to a single location. The downside, it notes, is the distracting, overwhelming environment not conducive to experiencing works past a superficial sampling. “Fairs are great for a scan of the pulse of the moment. One thing they are not is ideal for looking at art.” Says Maxwell Anderson, the director of the Dallas Museum of Art.
Artists Jake and Dinos Chapman will bring three monumental dinosaur sculptures to London this summer, part of a series of sculptural installations that will also include work by Antony Gormley and Robert Indiana. ”Art is an essential part of vitality of the City of London, a draw for workers and visitors alike, a major contributing factor in our economic vibrancy and the kernel of the cultural brio of the Square Mile.” Says John Scott, chairman of the City of London Corporation’s arts advisory board. Read More »
The Financial Times has published a profile on gallerist Daniella Luxembourg of Luxembourg and Dayan, highlighting her early life in Israel, and her new approaches to exhibition outside of her two successful gallery spaces in New York and London. Luxembourg’s pop-up gallery, titled Oko, has been gaining attention lately, with a recent show of work by Julian Schnabel, and an upcoming show of work by Dan Colen this week. “It’s a different intellectual dialogue, another way of engaging people,” Luxembourg said. “When I was working in the auction business, so much money was spent on dinners, marketing, publicity and entertaining … this is another way of working.” Read More »
Artist James Turrell will open three shows in the next month, bringing his light works to viewers nation wide. The artist has major retrospectives scheduled to open at the Guggenheim, LACMA, and the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. The ambitious series exhibitions has called for challenging constructions at the museums, recreating spaces from Turrell’s exacting specifications. ”We have trained our dry-wallers that they are working with art, not drywall,” says Bradley Johnson, chief architect for the construction project at LACMA. Read More »
In the wake of Cooper Union’s contentious decision to begin charging admission, The New York Times has published an in-depth study of the school’s finances, particularly its ownership of the land under the Chrysler Building. While the land earns a rent of $9 Million a year, it would be difficult to sell in an emergency, yet comprises 84% of the school’s assets. Combined with the debts accrued for the construction of the school’s new campus building, the article paints a bleak picture of the storied institution’s finances. “There was never any sense of giving back. Cooper never asked. We always thought Cooper didn’t need the money because it had the Chrysler Building. Forty years ago, I would have stressed to students that someone had to make it possible for you to come here for free.” Says trustee Thomas Driscoll. Read More »