Art Industry News: Climate Protesters Stage a Die-In Strike at the Louvre + More Must-Read Stories

Plus, collector and designer Hubert de Givenchy has died and galleries are cashing in on hotel art.

Members of the environmental activist group '' lie on the floor in front of Theodore Gericault's painting The Raft of the Medusa at The Louvre Museum in Paris on March 12, 2018. THOMAS SAMSON/AFP/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 Tuesday, March 13.


Exec-Turned-Artist Drops Out of News Cycle – Former Nike executive Erik Hagerman made a wild decision after President Trump’s election victory: He committed to tuning out the 24-hours news cycle. Now, he creates land art on his farm in Ohio. He calls his self-imposed news blackout “The Blockade”—although he still reads the arts pages. (New York Times)​

Paintings Worth $2 Million Missing From Storage – Police are investigating six 19th-century paintings worth nearly $2 million that were found missing from a Brooklyn storage facility that was recently acquired by Crozier Fine Arts. The works were all owned by one private collector; none were insured. (New York Post)

Climate Protesters Strike at the Louvre – Environmental activists staged a second protest at the Louvre yesterday, this time by lying down in front of Géricault’s The Raft of the Medusa. (Last time, they waved banners in front of a sculpture of Nike.) The group,, is angry about energy company Total’s corporate sponsorship of the Paris museum. (AFP)

New Glenstone Gets an Opening Date – The private museum in rural Maryland is expanding. Its pavilions and landscaped grounds will open to the public on October 4. Each new Glenstone pavilion will dive deep into the work of one artist, including Louise Bourgeois, Roni Horn, Michael Heizer, Lygia Pape, and Martin Puryear. (Press release)


Hotel Art Is Big Business – Eden Rock in St Barth’s is reopening post-Hurricane Irma with a dedicated gallery space. Since 2011, Gagosian has been showing work by artists including Richard Prince and Jonas Wood at the luxe resort. Now, five-star hotels from Paris to Antibes are working with galleries to sell art while enhancing the “guest experience.” (Financial Times)

What Indian Buyers Are Spending at Sotheby’s – Indian collectors are buying more art, and jewelry in particular, at Sotheby’s. The auction house specialist Edward Gibbs estimates the number of Indian clients at Sotheby’s has doubled over the past five years, during which time they have spent a combined $250 million. (Art Market Monitor)

R & Company Opens a New Tribeca Gallery – The modern and contemporary design dealership is opening a second gallery in New York’s Tribeca neighborhood this spring. The 8,000-square-foot space will also house a research center, library, and archive built over the past 20 years by founders Zesty Meyers and Evan Snyderman. (Press release)

Wolf of Wall Street Production Company to Pay $60M Settlement – The LA-based film production company co-founded by a relative of a former Malaysian prime minister has paid $60 million to the US government to settle claims that it benefited from a from a massive Malaysian corruption scandal and allegedly diverted funds to buy works by Van Gogh and Monet. Under the deal, the company admits no wrongdoing. (Courthouse News)​


Collector and Designer Givenchy Dies at 91 – Hubert de Givenchy, the French designer and art collector who founded the House of Givenchy in 1952, died on Saturday at age 91. Givenchy was the first high-fashion designer to launch a ready-to-wear line, pioneered the concept of separates, and worked closely with Audrey Hepburn and Jackie O. He was also on the board of Christie’s. (WWD)

Yusaku Maezawa Honored by the French Government – The Japanese collector has been awarded the Officer of the Order of Arts and Letters, one of France’s highest cultural honors. The ceremony took place at the Brooklyn Museum, where the e-commerce entrepreneur previously kicked off a tour of the Jean-Michel Basquiat painting he purchased for $110 million in 2016. (The Art Newspaper)

Art Institute Taps New Textile Curator – Melinda Watt will be the new chair and curator of textiles at the Art Institute of Chicago. In her new role, Watt will oversee more than 13,000 textiles and 66,000 sample swatches dating from 300 BC to the present. (ARTnews)

Museum Morsbroich Director Steps Down – Markus Heinzelmann is stepping down from his post at the Leverkusen institution for personal reasons. Heinzelmann had been at the helm since 2006, and was largely responsible for bringing the museum back to life from the point of extinction. (Monopol)


Dresden Gets a Gift of 1,200 Artworks – Dresden’s State Art Collections have received a generous donation from collectors Erika and Rolf Hoffmann. The large gift includes works by Jean-Michel Basquiat, Andy Warhol, Cy Twombly, and Tracey Emin. The collection will be integrated into Dresden’s 15 museums over the next five years. (TAN)

A New Production Turns the Sistine Chapel Into Theater – After years of planning and an $11 million investment, artistic director Marco Balich is preparing to unveil a theatrical production about the Sistine Chapel on March 15. Developed with the help of the Vatican Museums, the show could become Rome’s first permanent theatrical theater production in the vein of New York’s Broadway or London’s West End. (NYT)

Terracotta Warrior With Broken Thumb Gets a Check-Up – Experts from the cultural relics authority of Northwest China’s Shaanxi Province have brought the 2,200-year-old artifact back to China for restoration. The experts also met with leadership at the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia (where the sculpture’s thumb was broken off by a visitor) to discuss compensation. (

Paul Chan and Badlands Unlimited Take on the NRA – The artist and his publishing company are producing signs for student activists to use during the National School Walk Out on March 14 and the March for our Lives protest on March 24. The provocative new signs targeting the Trump Administration and the NRA are a part of Badlands’s ongoing “New Proverbs” series. (Press release)

New Proverbs. Courtesy Badlands Unlimited.

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