Art Industry News: Hey, Party People! New York City Officials Are Looking to Build a Museum of Nightlife + Other Stories

Plus, online antiques seller 1stDibs goes public, and the New Yorker magazine's union prepares a special strike issue.

Installation view, "Studio 54: Night Magic," Brooklyn Museum, 2020. (Photo: Jonathan Dorado.)

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 on this Friday, June 11.


Jason Farago Does Not Like Immersive Van Gogh – New York Times critic Jason Farago doesn’t love the new fad for immersive Van Gogh light projections, essentially calling anyone so unscrupulous as to be taken in by it a big baby. “Sensuous selfie backdrops come well before intellectual engagement here,” he writes, urging New Yorkers instead to go and admire any of the 20 real Van Gogh paintings in the city’s museums and to recognize the artist’s thick impasto brushstrokes (flattened in any fancy light show) as the original immersive experience. (New York Times)

An Artist Creates “Mount Recyclemore” During G7 Summit – Artist Joe Rush has created a monumental garbage sculpture of the G7 leaders in Cornwall to coincide with the annual summit. Called Mount Recyclemore (get it?), the sculpture is made from discarded electronics to highlight the threat posed to the environment by electronic waste, and will remain on the beach until Sunday. (Guardian)

New York City Wants a Museum of Nightlife – The city’s Office of Nightlife (yes, that’s a real thing!) is pushing the Big Apple to establish a museum dedicated to the city’s clubs, bars, underground haunts, and other nocturnal establishments. From the Cotton Club in Harlem to Studio 54 in Midtown (which has already inspired a museum show of its own), the city’s nightlife has a rich cultural history that deserves more serious attention and appreciation, the office argues. Might we suggest extensive evening hours? (Wall Street Journal)

16,000 Artists Sign Letter Supporting Palestine – Leading figures including Kara Walker, Nan Goldin, and Simone Leigh are among the 16,000 international artists, filmmakers, writers, and other creatives who have signed an open letter denouncing Israeli violence against Palestinians. The “Letter Against Apartheid” was originally drafted by six Palestinian artists and calls for a halt to the violence and an end to “support provided by global powers to Israel and its military.” (Hyperallergic)


Liste Announces Exhibitor Lineup – The Swiss art fair has announced the 84 galleries taking part in the Art Basel satellite this September, including Matthew Brown of Los Angeles and Super Dakota of Brussels. Collector and voluble art-world commentator Alain Servais deemed it a weaker line up than usual. “It is a risky time for galleries to splash 10s of thousands in a probably local fair,” he wrote on Twitter. (Twitter

Online Antiques Seller Raised $115 Million – The online antiques trading platform 1stDibs has raised $115 million after putting 5.75 million shares up for $20. The site begins trading on Nasdaq today under the ticker symbol DIBS. (Seeking Alpha)


Patrick Drahi Buys Controlling Stake in BT – Sotheby’s owner Patrick Drahi has bought a majority stake in the telecom company BT. The billionaire said he wanted to support the U.K. government’s efforts to roll out fiber broadband across the country; his confidence saw BT’s stock price surge by five percent. (TAN)

Architect Gottfried Böhm Dies – The German architect known for his Brutalist designs has died at age 101. Böhm’s concrete churches helped define the architectural landscape of postwar Germany. (New York Times)


Now You Can Spend the Night at Versailles – France’s majestic Versailles Palace has opened a hotel called Airelles Château de Versailles, Le Grand Contrôle. Now, you can end your visit to the palace with a night in a themed guest room of a 17th-century Jules Hardouin-Mansart-designed building for the low, low price of $2,000. (ArtFix Daily)

New Yorker Staff Preps a Strike Issue – The New Yorker union is facing off with management over its contract (they recently paid a visit to Anna Wintour’s home in protest) and is prepared to strike if an agreement cannot be reached. But never fear, New Yorker lovers: the union has prepared a special issue written, edited, fact-checked, and designed by its members. The cover art is by bargaining committee member and illustrator Genevieve Bormes. (Instagram)

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