Art Industry News: Lost Banksy of Coke-Sniffing Cop Rediscovered After a Decade + More Must-Read Stories

Plus, Donald Trump will skip the Kennedy Center Honors and a trove of early Polaroids of Madonna are for sale.

Banksy, Snorting Copper. Photo: ©Steve Cotton.

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 Monday, August 21.


National Gallery’s Art Not Actually Insured – The National Gallery’s chair, Hannah Rothschild, has disclosed that the London gallery’s holdings are too expensive to insure, leaving the collection “really vulnerable.” In fact, none of the UK’s national institutions, including Tate, can afford to insure their works and must rely on security measures to protect them instead. (Telegraph)

Donald Trump Won’t Attend Kennedy Center Honors – Donald and Melania Trump will skip this year’s Kennedy Center Honors “to allow the honorees to celebrate without any political distraction.” The decision comes after members of the White House Arts Committee resigned en masse on Friday. (NYT)

Long-Lost Banksy Rediscovered – A Banksy work that first appeared on a public toilet block ten years ago—before being vandalized and painted over—has been rediscovered at a London building site. Snorting Copper shows a policeman on all fours, snorting a line of cocaine. The owners of the disused site plan to restore the work and return it to its original home in east London this fall. (Guardian)

What Do We Do With Confederate Monuments? – As cities across the country remove their Confederate monuments from public squares, Holland Cotter considers what should be done with them. Cotter the citizen “embraces the possibility” of permanently jettisoning the country’s ugly history, while Cotter the historian wants to preserve the monuments in museums. “When you find yourself at a crime scene, you don’t destroy evidence.” (New York Times)


Trove of Pre-Fame Madonna Photos for Sale – Manhattan Rare Books is selling a complete set of 66 original Polaroids of Madonna taken by Richard Corman in 1983 for $350,000. The full group will be offered at this price until September 5. If no buyer can be found, the works will be dispersed and sold individually. (Press release)

How Do You Sell a Frank Lloyd Wright House? – Real estate brokers have their work cut out for them when trying to hawk one of the more than 300 homes designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. They must work out how to distinguish potential buyers from tourists—and justify the high price tag for houses that don’t often accommodate the demands of the modern buyer. (NYT)


President of the Gala-Salvador Dalí Foundation Dies – Ramon Boixados Malé, who has presided over the foundation since 1991 and was responsible for the development of the three museums known as the “Dalinian Triangle,” as well as an ambitious overseas program, has died at age 89. (Press release)

Shakeup at the San Diego Art Institute – The institute’s interim director, Lissa Corona, suddenly resigned last Friday in response to the hiring of Jacqueline Silverman as executive director. Corona says Silverman lacks curatorial experience, but board members value her fundraising chops and say SDAI can bring in outside curators for future exhibitions. (San Diego City Beat)

India Art Fair Names New Director – Jagdip Jagpal, the former manager of international partnerships at Tate, has been appointed the next director of India Art Fair. The fair’s founder Neha Kirpal is stepping down after nearly ten years at the helm, but will continue to be involved in the fair’s development. (The Art Newspaper)


Gold Toilet to Leave the Guggenheim – Maurizio Cattelan’s fully functional 18-karat gold toilet, installed in a single-occupancy restroom at the Guggenheim Museum since last year, will be removed on September 15. “More than 100,000 people have waited patiently in line for the opportunity to commune with art and with nature,” the museum’s Nancy Spector notes. (NYT)

Philadelphia to Install New Public Sculpture – As Confederate monuments come down, new works of public sculpture are going up. Philadelphia City Hall is erecting a 12-foot bronze sculpture of black educator, activist, and ballplayer Octavius V. Catto, who was murdered by a white mob in 1871. To be unveiled September 26, the statue is the city’s first public artwork honoring an individual African American on public land. (Philadelphia Inquirer)

400 Viking Artifacts Taken in Norway Museum Heist – Thieves scaled a seven-story scaffold to pilfer a collection of high-value historical items from the University Museum of Bergen last weekend. The museum is posting photos of the stolen objects—mostly small metal pieces like jewelry—online in an attempt to hinder their sale. (The Express Tribune)

See Jean-Michel Othoniel’s ‘Big Wave’ at CRAC – The artist has stacked 10,000 black glass bricks into a six- by 15-meter wave formation as part of his new exhibition titled “Géométries Amoureuses” (Love Geometry) at the Centre Régional d’Art Contemporain Occitanie/Pyrénées-Méditerranée in Sète until September 24. (designboom)

Jean-Michel Othoniel, The Big Wave, (2017). Photo: ©Marc Domage, courtesy Galerie Perrotin.

Jean-Michel Othoniel, The Big Wave, (2017). Photo: ©Marc Domage, courtesy Galerie Perrotin.

Jean-Michel Othoniel, The Big Wave, (2017). Photo: ©Marc Domage, courtesy Galerie Perrotin.

Follow Artnet News on Facebook:

Want to stay ahead of the art world? Subscribe to our newsletter to get the breaking news, eye-opening interviews, and incisive critical takes that drive the conversation forward.
Article topics