Art Industry News: Art Basel Denies Rumors It Is Planning a Fair in Saudi Arabia + Other Stories

Plus, an international photography award introduces a category for AI and Joe Bradley joins David Zwirner.

A visitor poses for a photo at the entrance of the Art Basel Hong Kong. Photo by Sebastian Ng/SOPA Images/LightRocket via 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 on this Wednesday, May 17.


Cultural Spaces Attacked in Ukraine – German culture minister Claudia Roth made a statement ahead of a meeting with EU officials claiming that more than 1,300 cultural institutions that have been attacked by the Russian forces, including libraries, archives, and museums since the invasion over a year ago. (Monopol)

International Photography Award Introduces AI Category – In a bid to address the debate of AI-generated images and impact on the photography industry, the IPA is introducing a new AI category to its 20th anniversary edition for those who created a work using AI, “allowing us to explore this new and fascinating form of expression” while “recognizing and honoring the true photographer’s art,” the organization said in a statement announcing the decision. (Instagram)

Art Basel Denies Claims Its Working on a Saudi Arabia Bid – In response to claims resurfaced in The Canvas this week, which alleged Art Basel’s involvement in a pitch to the Saudis from global public relations firm Edelman, the Swiss art fair giant maintained in a statement to Artnet News that “it does not have any active projects or projects under development in Saudi Arabia.” It added that the fair has “no form of partnership with Edelman” (the PR firm did not respond to questions). The claims first emerged in a Politico report published last summer. (Press release)

The Remaining Piece of the Green Vault Trial – A 55-year-old posing as a Belgian diamond dealer is now facing trial at the Dresden district court for targeted fraud by faking an offer to sell an object from the valuables stolen from the Green Vault. Five men were convicted yesterday for the 2019 shocking jewelry heist. (Monopol)


Joe Bradley Joins David Zwirner – Some four weeks after Wet Paint scribe Annie Armstrong first tipped off the press, painter Joe Bradley has officially joined the stable at mega-gallery David Zwirner. The move comes just two years after Bradley left Gagosian and Petzel. (Press release)

Heidi Hahn Joins Mitchell-Innes & Nash – The painter has joined the stable at Mitchell-Innes & Nash, bringing her “spectral figurative paintings” to the gallery. Hahn’s works, in collections of institutions including the Dallas Museum of Art and Moderna Museet Stockholm, marry historical references to reclining nudes with contemporary perspectives. (Press release)

Asante King asks British Museum to return gold to Ghana – The Asantehene Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, who attended the Coronation of King Charles, is pressing the institution to return the treasures that were looted from the Asante palace in Kusami during the 1874 war with the British. The king reportedly had a meeting with Hartwig Fischer, director of the British Museum. (BBC)


Stone of Destiny Returns to Edinburgh Castle after King’s coronation – The historic artifact that was brought to London’s Westminster Abbey from its home in Edinburgh Castle for King Charles III’s coronation has been returned to Scotland and is back on display. The stone weighing 152 kg was installed as the Coronation Chair in which the king was crowned. (Evening Standard)

The Stone of Destiny lies in Edinburgh Castle before onward transportation to Westminster Abbey for the Coronation of King Charles III, on April 27, 2023 in Edinburgh, Scotland. Photo by Russell Cheyne - Pool/Getty Images.

The Stone of Destiny lies in Edinburgh Castle. Photo by Russell Cheyne – Pool/Getty Images.

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