From Profound Mutations in the Art World to Iran’s Brutal Sentence for an Art Dealer: The Best and Worst of the Art World This Week
Catch up on what you missed—fast.
Total Eclipse of the Art – In a sweeping tour d’horizon of the crazy tech-fueled pressures reshaping art today, Ben Davis delves deep into the weirdness in his must-read “State of the Culture” series, explaining, for instance, how a dancing baby indirectly killed the traditional art review.
The Art Community Wrestles With Its Challenges – artnet News’s business guru Tim Schneider was invited to speak at this year’s Talking Galleries Symposium in Barcelona, and he reports here on the hot-button issues everyone was so agitated about at the prestigious event.
Cat Memes and VR Shows, Explained – We looked at how the ICA Boston is picking apart the manifold themes inherent in its ambitious new exhibition “Art in the Age of the Internet.”
Museum Bowl 2018 – As Boston and Philadelphia gear up for Superbowl Sunday, the biggest art institution from the rival states’ respective metropolises have made their own game-day wager that will have the winning institution saying “Show us the Mon-et.”
Winning the Leonardo Lottery – Thanks to the megawatt sale of Leonardo da Vinci’s Salvator Mundi, Christie’s reports a considerable uptick in auction sales for 2017—but not all the numbers are painting such a pretty picture, since private sales have plummeted.
MoMA Sends Masterworks to End of the Earth – While it continues its renovation, the museum is dispatching a trove of 200 pieces by the likes of Salvador Dalí, Roy Lichtenstein, and Cindy Sherman to the National Gallery of Victoria later this year .
Warm Words for a Political Art Voice – In response to the departure of Queens Museum director Laura Raicovich, an open letter praising her singular vision was signed by a number of influential curators from across the art world and published in the New York Times.
Closing Doors on Chuck Close – The backlash against artist Chuck Close continues; this week Seattle University removed his mosaic-style painting Self Portrait 2000 in the wake of sexual harassment allegations.
Asterisks for Artwork – In the wake of allegations against Close and others in the art world, the artist provocateur Emma Sulkowitz infiltrated New York’s top museums wearing little but a few well-placed asterisks to make a point about the new caveats some people say should be attached to the reputations of offending artists.
Iran Beats and Imprisons Art Dealer and Wife – Iranian-American art gallerist Karan Vafadari and his wife Afarin Neyssari were sentenced to a staggering 27-year prison sentence, whippings, and exorbitant fees for charges that include espionage—they consorted with Western figures—and entertaining guests with alcohol.
Syria’s Culture in Peril – Echoing past damage to cultural sites by ISIS, air strikes carried out by Turkish forces wrought destruction on the ancient Syrian site of Ain Dara, a site dating back 3,000 years.
Art Invasion or Vandalism? – Many people think the rogue street artist known as Invader took his guerrilla-style graffiti too far when he used sacred Buddhist temples in Bhutan as his canvas.
Curtains for Broadway 1602 Gallery – The gallery filed for bankruptcy earlier this week, and has shut down its physical space in Harlem.
An Unnatural Trustee – Curators and other proponents of the Museum of Natural History are calling for Trump mega-backer Rebekah Mercer to step down, citing her financial support of organizations that aim to discredit the verity of climate change.
No Gallery? No Problem – Eschewing tradition, Frieze no longer requires exhibitors to have a brick-and-mortar gallery space to participate in the fair, in yet another sign of the increasingly digitally dominated market.
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