Art Industry News: Donald Trump’s Doodle of the Empire State Building Sells for $16,000 + More Must-Read Stories

Plus, Vogue has banned the photographer Terry Richardson and Michelle Obama's portraitist is working on a tight deadline.

Trump's tower doodle. (Photo of Donald Trump by Steve Pope/Getty Images; artwork courtesy of Julien's Auctions)

Art Industry News is a daily digest of the most consequential developments coming out of the art world and art market. Here’s what you need to know this Tuesday, October 24.


Matisse Family Wins Cutouts Court Case – A French judge has ruled that art dealer Jérôme Le Blay is not, in fact, the rightful owner of two works by Henri Matisse worth $4.5 million. He must immediately return the cutouts to the family of the artist’s son, though he may appeal the ruling. (The Art Newspaper) 

Laura Owens Pained by Boyle Heights Backlash – The LA-based artist gets the profile treatment ahead of her mid-career survey at the Whitney Museum. Owens—who, Peter Schjeldahl writes, “never imitates a style or, really, has one of her own”—has come under fire from activists who view her LA art space as a symbol of the neighborhood’s gentrification. (New Yorker)

Vogue Bans Terry Richardson – A leaked Condé Nast email says that the publisher’s titles—including Vogue, GQ, and Vanity Fair—should no longer work with the controversial US photographer, who has been accused by models of sexual misconduct. (Telegraph)

Amy Sherald Is on Deadline to Paint Michelle Obama – The Baltimore-based artist—who was handpicked to paint the former First Lady out of 20 portfolios submitted to the Obamas by the National Portrait Gallery’s curators—has only three months to finish her most high-profile commission to date. “I’m not going home for the holidays,” Sherald notes. (New York Times)


$35 Million Bacon Triptych Hits the Block – Following Christie’s failure to sell a 1971 study by Bacon earlier this month, estimated at $60 million, Sotheby’s is having a go with a more modestly priced triptych that depicts the artist’s lover. The work has not been displayed publicly in more than five decades. (Financial Times)

Trump Drawing Sells for $16,000 – A doodle of the Empire State Building by President Trump—who once sought to buy the iconic skyscraper—sold at Julien’s Auctions to an anonymous buyer for $16,000. Ironically considering Trump’s adversarial relationship to the press, a portion of the sale’s proceeds will fund an NPR station in Connecticut. (NYT)

Armory Show Lowers Booth Prices for Mid-Level Galleries – Next year’s fair will have an expanded Focus section dedicated to midsize galleries, and rates there will be about a third cheaper than in the main section. Regular booths will be larger and pricier to help subsidize the more affordable ones, which start at $21,000. (FT)​


Spanish National Prize Winner Announced – Angela de la Cruz, the Galician artist and 2010 Turner Prize finalist, has won Spain’s biggest award for the visual arts, a €30,000 ($35,000) endowment from the Ministry of Education, Culture, and Sports. (El Pais)

Fondation d’Entreprise Ricard Award Goes to French Sculptor – The French sculptor Caroline Mesquita Nabs has been named the 19th recipient of the young artist prize, which is awarded annually during FIAC in Paris. (Numéro)

Art Storage Company Expands Westward – Crozier Fine Arts has acquired the Los Angeles-based company Fine Art Shipping, expanding its offerings on the West Coast. The proximity to LAX airport will also help the company establish a foothold in Asia and the Pacific, where it has identified growing demand. (TAN)


Communist Mausoleum to Be Replaced by Sculpture – To celebrate Bulgaria’s first EU presidency in January, a 45-foot-tall bronze sculpture by Plamen Dejanoff will be installed on the site of former Soviet leader Georgi Dimitrov’s demolished mausoleum in the Bulgarian capital of Sofia. (Balkan Insight)

American Art Archives Gets Endowed Collecting Program – The Smithsonian’s Archives of American Art in Washington, DC, has received a bequest of $2.5 million from late collector Gerald Buck to endow its collecting program on the West Coast. (ArtfixDaily)

Palestinian Museum to Open in New Jersey – Palestine Museum US, the first institution dedicated to the subject in the States, hopes to use art and literature to capture a more accurate portrait of Palestinians than is often seen in American media. The museum says it will not position itself politically and plans to launch later this year with a show of photos from before 1948. (New Haven Register)



“Tom Uttech: New Paintings”
Alexandre Gallery (New York)
Ongoing – November 25

A modern-day landscape painter who was featured in two Whitney Biennials, Tom Uttech creates dazzling vistas of natural settings chockablock with flora and fauna—all conjured in the studio from his memories of trips through Northern Wisconsin, Canada’s Quetico National Park, and other remote woodlands. In this show of new paintings, the artist envelops the viewer with the vibrant multiplicity of these mysterious wilderness redoubts.

Tom Uttech's <em>Nin Bakewis</em> (1001) 2017. All photos courtesy of Alexandre Gallery.

Tom Uttech’s Nin Bakewis (1001)
2017. All photos courtesy of Alexandre Gallery.

<em>Nanagatawendamowin (994)</em>, 2017

Nanagatawendamowin (994), 2017

<em>Mamakadendagwad (982)</em>, 2016

Mamakadendagwad (982), 2016

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