Art Industry News: Jim Carrey’s Portrait of a ‘Monstrous’ Sarah Huckabee Sanders Goes Viral + More Must-Read Stories

Plus, a $35 million de Kooning heads to Art Basel Hong Kong and Facebook apologizes for yet another art censorship debacle.

Jim Carrey painting in his studio. Courtesy of the artist.

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, March 19.


Jerry Saltz Reclaims the Met’s Plaza (Again) – At the end of last month, art critic Jerry Saltz made a viral statement by covering up controversial Met donor David H. Koch’s name on the fountain outside the museum with the words “Climate Change Denier Plaza.” Now he’s returned to the scene, using a strip of marbled tape to obscure the gold-lettered dedication and declaring via Instagram: “You can’t buy our name.” (Instagram)

Facebook Apologizes for Censoring Liberty’s Breasts – A French playwright’s ad for an upcoming production was rejected by the social media giant because it included an image of Delacroix’s Liberty Leading the People (1830). But after Jocelyn Fiorina covered the woman’s bare torso with a banner that said “banned by Facebook,” Facebook apologized and reauthorized the original. (South China Morning Post)​

Jim Carrey Paints Sarah Huckabee Sanders – The actor-turned-painter shared his latest work on Twitter, and he’s evidently continuing his foray into political art. He captioned the image of a shouting woman: “This is the portrait of a so-called Christian whose only purpose in life is to lie for the wicked. Monstrous!” Twitter users quickly identified her as President Trump’s press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders. (Decider)

How Jackie Brought the Mona Lisa to Camelot – As a new edition of Margaret Leslie’s Mona Lisa in Camelot is published, the author recounts how the Louvre’s masterpiece made guest appearances at the National Gallery of Art and the Met thanks to Jackie Kennedy’s charm campaign on a presidential visit to Paris in 1961. Charles de Gaulle and André Malraux surrendered immediately to the First Lady’s “crazy” loan request. (Garage)


A $35 Million de Kooning Is Heading to Art Basel Hong Kong – Microsoft co-founder and billionaire collector Paul Allen is selling a key work from his collection, Untitled XII (1975) by Willem de Kooning. The painting, which fetched $517,000 at auction in 1987, will be offered at the fair by Lévy Gorvy Gallery. (Bloomberg)

The Gulf Gets an Old Master at Sotheby’s – A painting by Peter Paul Rubens, Portrait of a Bearded Venetian Nobleman, is going on view at Sotheby’s Dubai galleries on March 20 before heading to London, where it will leading its Old Masters sale in July. The move comes as experts report a growing interest in Old Masters in the Middle East. (Press release)

Croatian Police Display Forged Artworks – Artworks seized by Croatian police on the black market are now on view at the Police Museum in Split. The exhibition “The Beauty of False Glitter” includes counterfeit works by Salvador Dalí and Pierre-Auguste Renoir. (Total Croatia News)

A Rediscovered Jacob Lawrence Heads to Auction – Tension on the High Seas has been effectively “lost” within an unknown private collection for 50 years. Now, the historical painting will be sold at Swann Galleries on April 5 (pre-sale estimate: $75,000–100,000). The work is part of a six-panel series; after this finding, four of the six works are still unaccounted for. (Hyperallergic)


New Director for Tate Liverpool – Helen Legg will begin her new role director of Tate Liverpool this summer. She has served as director of the contemporary art venue Spike Island in Bristol since 2010. (Press release)

Shenzhen Biennale Axes Curator After Harassment Allegations – Gary Xu Gang, one of the three curators leading the Shenzhen Biennale, has been terminated following allegations of sexual misconduct, which he denies. The allegations emerged after a university assistant professor with whom Xu worked at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign claimed online that Xu had been persistently sexually harassing his female students for 20 years. (ArtAsiaPacific)

What Country Has the World’s Best Teacher? – British art and textiles teacher Andria Zafirakou is the world’s best teacher—at least according to the Varkey Foundation. The education nonprofit awarded Zafirakou $1 million for the fourth annual global teacher award. She is the first UK teacher to win the prize. (Guardian)

British Council in Russia Shut Down – Amid the ongoing diplomatic fallout over the attempted poisoning of a Russian double agent in England, the Russian government has closed the British Council in Moscow. Projects affected include a competition to pick a young Russian artist or designer to create a memorial to William Shakespeare in Moscow. Last week, Britain expelled 23 Russian diplomats. (Press release)


Meet the Woman Who Lived at the American Gothic House – The white farmhouse in the background of Grant Wood’s American Gothic is a real place in a tiny Iowa town called Eldon. Although now owned by the State Historical Society, it used to be rented out. A former resident opens up about the place, with its low ceilings and steady stream of tourists—and snakes. (New York Times)

Amalia Ulman and Her Pigeon Called Bob – Ilia Ovechkin photographs the artist in a fashion shoot inspired by one of her performances, Privilege, for which she created a character working in a Downtown LA office and living with a pet pigeon. The motion-infused photographs offer a set of blurry silhouettes that background an interview with the artist. (SSense)  

See Photos of Salvador Dalí Taken by Women – The Gala-Salvador Dalí Foundation is showing 48 photographic portraits of the Surrealist artist at a temporary exhibition at Púbol Castle called “Women Photograph Dalí.” Included in the show is an intimate set by Gala, photos by the artist Valentine Hugo, and others by Anna Laetitia Pecci-Blunt and Gloria Braggiotti. (Press release)

Anna Laetitia Pecci-Blunt, Portrait of Salvador Dalí at Villa Reale di Marlia (1936). Image rights of Salvador Dalí reserved.

Denise Bellon, Salvador Dalí and his mannequin at the Exposition Internationale du Surréalisme, Paris
(1938). Image rights of Salvador Dalí reserved.

Gala, Salvador Dalí in Carry-le-Rouet (1930). Image rights of Salvador Dalí reserved.

Martha Holmes, Salvador Dalí with the oil painting ‘The Servant of the Disciples of Emmaus’ and studio material (ca. 1960). Image rights of Salvador Dalí reserved.

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