Art Industry News: Collector Roman Abramovich Named in Provocative ‘Kremlin Report’ + More Must-Read Stories

Plus, Hong Kong plans its first nude art festival and the DA seizes another antiquity from billionaire collector Michael Steinhardt.

Businessman and Chelsea Football Club owner Roman Abramovich. Photo: Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images.

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 Thursday, February 1.


Does the Barnes Have the Highest Price of Admission in America? – With the current “Kiefer Rodin” exhibition on view at the Barnes Museum in Philadelphia, entrance now costs $30, making it the most expensive museum in the country. This institution’s so-called “dynamic” pricing is a trend across the US, with many museums opting for complicated and dramatically fluctuating pricing schemes. (The Inquirer)

Another Work Seized From Billionaire Michael Steinhardt – The Manhattan district attorney has confirmed that a first-century fresco fragment has been captured from the home of billionaire art collector Michael Steinhardt as part of an ongoing wave of seizures. Authorities believe the hedge-fund manager purchased the trafficked antiquity in 1996 for $600,000. (ARCA Art Crime Blog)

‘Kremlin Report’ Includes Big-Name Collectors – The US Treasury has released an unclassified list of Kremlin officials and oligarchs who may receive sanctions due to their association the political situation in Ukraine and US election meddling. The list includes several major art-world figures, including collectors and private museum founders Roman Abramovich, Vladimir Potanin, and Boris Mints. (The Art Newspaper)

Should We Rethink Our Approach to the Nude? – Amid the wave of sexual misconduct allegations against art-world heavyweights like Chuck Close, one critic says a larger question must be addressed: Is the tradition of male artists painting female nudes just fundamentally sexist and “pervy”? (The Globe and Mail)


Art Basel Announces Hong Kong Encounters Sector – This year’s Encounters sector dedicated to oversize art will feature work by 12 artists including Chou Yu-Cheng, Ryan Gander, and Subodh Gupta. Nine new works will be created specifically for the show; they will be installed across two floors of Hong Kong’s convention center from March 29 through March 31. (Press release)

Artgenève Teams Up With Pavilion of Art + Design – For its seventh iteration, which opens today and runs through February 4, the Swiss art fair is teaming up with the design specialist to launch PAD Genève. The fairs have invited 27 design and decorative art galleries to show in an adjacent venue. (TAN)

Galerie Max Hetzler Now Reps Adam Pendleton – The American artist has nabbed new German representation following his solo exhibition at Berlin’s KW Institute. Pendleton will continue to be represented by Pace, Eva Presenhuber (in Zurich and New York), Shane Campbell (in Chicago), and Galeria Pedro Cera (in Lisbon). Max Hetzler will present its first show with the artist in 2019. (ARTnews)

Rhona Hoffman Gallery Is on the Move – The veteran Chicago dealer is moving out of her West Loop gallery to take up space in the burgeoning arts district of West Town. Her new space, which opens in April, is more than 2,800 square feet. But Hoffman admits she did not want to move—she was priced out by her landlord, who raised her rent by 27 percent. (ARTnews)


Executive Director of ArtTable to Step Down In July, Ada Ciniglio will end her six-year term at the helm of the New York nonprofit for women in the arts. “While I look forward to my next chapter and new challenges, I will always be an admirer of the extraordinary women of ArtTable,” she says. (Artforum)

Ireland Biennial Releases Artist List – The 38th edition of EVA International, Ireland’s biennial, has released the list of participating artists ahead of the event’s opening on April 14. There will be new commissions by Malala Andrialavidrazana, Sam Keogh, and John Rainey, as well as large-scale installations by John Gerrard and Sanja Iveković. (Press release)

Worcester Art Museum Taps New Curator – Erin R. Corrales-Diaz has been appointed assistant curator of American art at the Massachusetts museum. She previously served as curator of the Johnson Collection in South Carolina. She begins her new role in May. (Artforum)

Frost Museum FIU Appoints New Chief Curator Amy Galpin will take up her new role at the Patricia and Phillip Frost Art Museum FIU in Miami on February 12. She comes to the institution from the Cornell Fine Arts Museum at Rollins College. (Press release)


Jim Shaw on Popularity in the Art World – The Wall Street Journal asked six figures to define popularity in their respective fields. Artist Jim Shaw says that power lies in the hands of collectors, who control an artist’s value. But in the art world, “you can be successful without being popular.” (Wall Street Journal)

Hong Kong Plans First Nude Art Festival  Siu Ding—a life model, photographer, and body acceptance advocate—is launching Hong Kong Body Fest in the conservative city. Photography, painting, and illustration tied to the theme of bodily autonomy will be on display in Wan Chai’s Foo Tak Building until February 4. (South China Morning Post)

New Museum Plans Major Sarah Lucas Show  The New Museum has released its exhibition schedule for 2018 and is planning a museum-wide retrospective of YBA sculptor Sarah Lucas in the fall. If you can’t wait that long for a dose of British art, the museum will also host the first stateside survey of video artist John Akomfrah over the summer. (Press release)

Artist Launches Campaign to Eliminate Hostile Design – After noticing metal bars installed on local benches in Bournemouth to prevent homeless people from sleeping on them, British artist Stuart Semple hatched a plan to create, a site where people can post photos of these “immoral” objects when they spot them. (TAN)

An example of the ‘hostile’ bench design in Bournemouth. Photo courtesy @MrStuartSemple via Facebook.

Another example of ‘hostile’ design in Bournemouth. Photo courtesy @MrStuartSemple via Facebook.

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