Art Industry News: Andy Warhol’s Portrait of O.J. Simpson Will Hit the Auction Block at Phillips in May + Other Stories
Plus, Sotheby's launches an on-chain marketplace and Bono illustrates the Atlantic's June cover.
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 Tuesday, May 2.
Poly Auctions Plans to Make Moves – One of China’s biggest auction houses says it hopes to open offices in London and South Korea this year, though it has not yet announced any concrete plans. Poly and another auction house, China Guardian, are both setting their sights on Western consignors in the hopes of bringing more high value contemporary art to the market. (Financial Times)
Sotheby’s Launches On-Chain Marketplace in Metaverse – The auction house is allowing collectors to trade directly in the secondary marketplace using Ethereum and Polygon networks. A curated selection of NFTs by artists like Tyler Hobbs and Claire Silver will be featured on a rotation every few months. (CoinDesk)
Warhol Portrait of O.J. Simpson Heads to Auction – The work is one of eleven silkscreen portraits of the former football player by the pioneer of Pop Art based on photos taken at the peak of his athletic career in 1977, nearly two decades before he was embroiled in the murder of his ex-wife Nicole Brown and her friend Ronald Goldman. (Simpson was acquitted of the murders but later deemed liable for the deaths in a civil court.) Offered as part of Phillips New York’s 20th Century and Contemporary Art Day Sale on May 16, it is expected to fetch as much as $500,000. (ARTnews)
Delving Into Karl Lagerfeld’s Past – The late German fashion designer was celebrated last night as the theme of this year’s Met Gala ahead of a new exhibition opening May 5. A report probes into the less savory aspects of his legacy that have gone unexamined, including making offensive statements about the Holocaust, incidents of fatphobia, and speaking out against the #MeToo movement. (Washington Post)
MOVERS & SHAKERS
Keith Coventry to Reopen City Racing This Summer – Known by many for his South London gallery City Racing, open from 1988 to 1998, the British abstract artist has plans to inaugurate a new space under the same name in Shropshire, England this summer. Ahead of its opening, he presents works old and new at Pace Gallery in London until May 25. (Press release)
ICA Boston Names New Chief Curator – Eva Respini is leaving her post at the Institute of Contemporary Art Boston after eight years and Ruth Erickson has been appointed to succeed her in the role beginning June 1. Erickson has worked in ICA’s curatorial department since 2017. (Press release)
Screen to Shield King’s Coronation Unvieled – A three-sided screen inspired by a stained glass window from the Chapel Royal of St James’s Palace will keep King Charles from view as he is anointed before he is officially crowned on May 6. The traditionally-crafted work features the Commonwealth’s countries’ names embroidered around a central tree and was made using sustainable materials, held by wooden poles made from a windblown tree at the Windsor Estate. (Reuters)
FOR ARTS SAKE
Bono illustrates The Atlantic’s June 2023 Cover – The magazine invited the Irish singer and activist, who has recently made a splash for his celebrity portrait sketches, to illustrate the June cover with a portrait of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. A painterly sketch of Zelensky’s face in blue is set against a bright yellow backdrop on the cover, with the quote “The Choice Is Between Freedom and Fear” across the top. (Washington Post)
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