Art Industry News: Did Kendrick Lamar Steal From a Young Artist for ‘Black Panther’? + More Must-Read Stories

Plus, Tate's director apologizes for her comments on sexual harassment and a museum discovers a new work by Jan Steen.

Kendrick Lamar at the 60th Annual GRAMMY Awards at Madison Square Garden on January 28. (Photo by Christopher Polk/Getty Images for NARAS)

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, February 12.


Is Crystal Bridges America’s Most Progressive Museum? – Critic Philip Kennicott claims the rural Arkansas museum founded by Walmart heiress Alice Walton might be the “most woke museum in America.” As evidence, he cites the fact that work by Native American artists is woven into the original painting collection and that, in one room, work by Native American, African American, and female artists outnumber the single painting on view by a white man. (The Washington Post)

Tate Director Apologizes for Sexual Harassment Comments – Maria Balshaw took to Instagram to apologize for comments she made in an interview with the Times last week, including that she had never suffered harassment because she “was raised to be a confident woman.” The organization We Are Not Surprised condemned her words as dismissive of victims of sexual abuse. Balshaw later clarified that perpetrators are responsible for bad behavior, not women who are subjected to it. (The Art Newspaper)

Kendrick Lamar Accused of Stealing Artist’s Work  British-Liberian artist Lina Iris Viktor says that Kendrick Lamar used her work without permission in his new music video for “All the Stars,” a song from the superhero movie “Black Panther.” Viktor says she twice denied the film’s creators permission to feature the 24-karat gold patterns in her “Constellations” series. She is now asking for a public apology and a license fee. (New York Times)

Artforum Responds to Questions About Ownership – Artforum has responded after the organization We Are Not Surprised called for a boycott until former publisher Knight Landesman is removed as an owner and the magazine’s motion to dismiss Amanda Schmitt’s lawsuit is withdrawn. The magazine says it has not defended Landesman’s actions in court; there are no legal means by which it can divest him of his shares; and that he has received no remuneration since his departure in October. (Artforum, artnet News)


Why Christie’s CEO Guillaume Cerutti Is Cheerful – On the heels of the announcement that Christie’s pulled in $1.2 billion more in total sales last year than Sotheby’s, the house’s chief executive tells Georgina Adam that investing in the global picture—and closing the auction house’s South Kensington space—is paying dividends. He also hints that he is considering moving to New York. (Financial Times)

Framed Trump Signature Sells for $4,800 – Toronto-based photographer Peter Andrew Lusztyk picked up a “weirdly aggressive” autograph by President Trump on eBay for $300. On a whim, he decided to frame it and include it in his next exhibition at Only One Gallery in Toronto with a hefty markup. To his surprise, it sold—for $4,800. (Globe and Mail)

Lévy Gorvy to Represent Martial Raysse – The French artist Martial Raysse (born 1936), who has received an uptick in attention in recent years, will now be represented in the US by Lévy Gorvy. The tony New York gallery will open an exhibition of the self-taught artist’s portraits, including 20 recent works, on February 28. (Press release)


Busan Biennale Taps Curators  When the biennale launched a public search for directors last December, curator Cristina Ricupero and writer/editor Jörg Heiser applied as a team. Together, they will art-direct the South Korean festival’s ninth edition, which opens September 8. (Artforum)

Cleveland Museum Appoints New Drawings Curator  Britany Salsbury has been hired as associate curator of prints and drawings at the Cleveland Museum of Art. She previously served as an associate curator at the Milwaukee Art Museum and begins her new role on March 27. (Press release)

Kettles Yard Reopens After Refurbishment – The Cambridge gallery devoted to British Modern art reopened on Saturday after a $15.6 million redesign that was nearly 14 years in the making. Architect Jamie Fobert managed to preserve the intimate essence of the row of tiny houses, which were converted into a gallery in the ’70s. But the Observer’s Rowan Moore nevertheless deems the new Kettle’s Yard “generic and could-be-anywhere.” (Guardian)

JOAN Gallery Moves to Downtown LA  Priced out of its West Adams location, the Los Angeles nonprofit gallery is moving downtown. The inaugural show in its new 3,000-square-foot home is a solo exhibition of New York-based artist Sam Anderson that opens on February 17. (ARTnews)


Museum Rediscovers Work by Jan Steen – The Mauritshuis Museum in the Netherlands has confirmed that a work that was previously believed to be an 18th-century copy of a Jan Steen painting is, in fact, the real thing. The Mocking of Samson was completed by Steen in 1676. (AP)

Toledo Museum Launches New Master Plan  The Toledo Museum of Art will embark on a 20-year project with the firm Beyer Blinder Belle Architects to create new green space, connect its 12 buildings, increase accessibility and visibility, and reconnect the museum to the local urban neighborhood. (Press release)

Antonio Banderas Preps to Play Picasso – After years of turning down offers to play the legendary artist, Banderas is preparing to play Picasso in not one, but two, projects: a National Geographic series and a film about the making of Guernica. “I remember my mother holding my hand and taking me to school in the morning past his house on the Plaza de la Merced,” Banderas recalled. (AFP)

Monumental Kapoor Comes to Houston – Anish Kapoor’s 30-foot-tall Cloud Column has been acquired by the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. The “vertical sister” to Chicago’s much-photographed Cloud Gate sculpture (better known as “The Bean”) will be unveiled on May 20 in front of the new Glassell School of Art building. Has anyone seen “Arrival”? (Houston Chronicle)

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