From the Frieze Art Fair’s Plan to Conquer Hollywood to Self-Sabotage at the New Museum: The Best and Worst of the Art World This Week

Catch up on what you missed—fast.

Hollywood. Photo by Ken Levine, Getty Images.



Everyone Wants to See the Obama Portraits – The newly unveiled paintings of Barack and Michelle Obama at the National Portrait Gallery have contributed to a three hundred percent increase at the museum, and the numbers are still pouring in.

“Bring Back Beatrix” Becomes Rallying Cry – Once again, the power of petitions is on display as a cohort of leaders in the global art world sign a petition calling for curator Beatrix Ruf to be reinstated at the Stedelijk Museum.

A Woolf in Photographer’s Clothing – The legendary modernist author Virginia Woolf has long been renowned for her empathic storytelling, breathtaking prose, unconventional life, and dramatic death—and now she is also getting known for her photography as well, which she avidly pursued among the Bloomsbury Set, taking pictures of her illustrious friends and her pets too.

The Hammer Is Hitting the Fundraising Circuit – The Los Angeles museum announced a massive $180 million dollar fundraising campaign, following record-making donations this week.

Jasper Johns Is #Trending With the Millennials – The Broad in Los Angeles has an illuminating new exhibition devoted to the perennial success of Jasper Johns, including his beloved flag-themed artworks—and the young people seem to love it.

The Frieze Art Fair Is Heading to Hollywood – The art fair announced it will officially debut on the West Coast in 2019 this week, taking place at the famed Paramount Studios in the heart of Tinseltown.

Vive le Koons? – Despite the ongoing criticism of Jeff Koons’s proposed memorial Bouquet of Tulips, a host of cultural icons in France are coming to the artist’s side, defending the work and its message of friendship and remembrance.



The Protest Must Go On – Artist and activist Parker Bright isn’t done fighting over Dana Schutz’s controversial painting; his protest at last year’s Whitney Biennial is at the root of a new fight against a new show on display at Paris’s Center Pompidou.

Handbaggate Goes to Court – The contentious battle over the luxury-purse auction market will officially go to trial, according to a judge’s ruling this week, with the case hinging on whether or not Christie’s poached purse-experts from Texas-based Heritage Auctions and violated non-compete clauses.

Self-Sabotage at the Triennial? – artnet News critic Ben Davis reviews the New Museum Triennial “Songs for Sabotage,” and finds that although it’s heavy on rhetoric, the artwork is light on any real revolution.

Caveat Emptor, Christie’s! – When Christie’s bought the once-hot art startup Collectrium, it was hoped to mark a savvy leap into the future. Instead, it has consumed the auction house in a lot of drama.

5Pointz Developers Will Fight Back – The developer of the 5Pointz building who was pitted against a group of graffiti artists is vowing to appeal last week’s shocking verdict that ordered him to pay a whopping $6.75 million in favor of the artists.

Santiago Sierra’s Political Art Is Yanked – The Spanish artist planned to present work at ARCOmadrid that takes on the contentious issue of Catalan Independence, but the organizers removed the artwork before its opening day in an act of censorship that has inflamed even the city’s mayor.

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