Art Industry News: Barbara Kruger Has Designed Profound MetroCards for NYC + More Must-Read Stories

Plus, hackers target high-end art galleries and the recovered Banco Santos art trove heads to Sotheby's.

Barbara Kruger. Photo: Adriel Reboh, ©Patrick McMullan.

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, October 31.


The New “Golden Age” of Black Portraiture  Antwaun Sargent notes that the Obamas’ selection of two African American artists for their official portraits “confirmed what we already knew: We have entered a new golden age of black painting.” A new generation of artists, including Jordan Casteel, Mario Moore, and Njideka Akunyili Crosby, are following in the footsteps of ’60s pioneers. (W Magazine)

Barbara Kruger Has Designed NYC MetroCards  Finally, New York’s Metropolitan Transit Authority is doing something right. The MTA will release 50,000 limited edition MetroCards designed by Kruger at four stations during Performa, which begins tomorrow. The New York- and LA-based artist’s work will also appear on a school bus and beneath the Manhattan Bridge. (New York Times)

Galleries Hit by Cyber Crime – Hackers have managed to steal large sums from galleries and their clients by intercepting invoices and rerouting payments. At least nine galleries including Hauser & Wirth, Simon Lee, Thomas Dane, and Laura Bartlett have been targeted—but an insurance broker suspects “the problem is a lot worse than we imagine.” (The Art Newspaper)

Cave Art Found in Caribbean  Archaeologists have discovered thousands of previously unknown paintings and drawings by the Tainos people, a long-lost civilization from the 14th century. The art adorns 30 caves on the uninhabited Caribbean island of Mona, which is midway between Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic. (Independent)


Disgraced Banker’s Art Heads to Auction  A trove of missing art that once belonged to Brazilian financier Edemar Cid Ferreira and was later seized by US authorities is now heading to Sotheby’s. The disgraced former president of Banco Santos was arrested in 2006 for an alleged $1 billion money-laundering scheme. (Wall Street Journal)

Nevinson’s WWI Painting Could Fetch $1.3 Million A painting of French soldiers on the Western Front painted by the British Vorticist CRW Nevinson could sell for more than £1 million ($1.3 million) at Sotheby’s London on November 21. The work has been in a private collection since 1964; it was first shown during the war at a solo show in 1916. (TAN)

Africa’s Art Fairs Are Poised to Explode  While parts of Europe and the US are experiencing art-fair fatigue, Africa is just getting started. Organizers of Art X Lagos, Nigeria’s leading art fair, which opens this week, aim to attract local and international attention and guard against a “brain drain” that has been pushing talent out of the country. (Quartz)

Assistant Steals Sean Scully Painting The artist’s former assistant, Arturo Rucci, was arrested last Thursday and charged with possession of stolen property after trying to sell a Scully painting at Bonhams. Suspicious auction house staff alerted Scully, who discovered the painting had been stolen. (NY Post)


Three New Trustees for the Brooklyn Museum  Terry Laughlin, the vice chairman of the Bank of America, Susana Torruella Leval, the former director of El Museo del Barrio, and private equity investor Amanda Waldron are the latest additions to the museum’s board of trustees. (Artforum)

Dia Gets Endowed Directorship  A generous gift from Dia’s board chair Nathalie de Gunzburg and her husband Charles will ensure the future of the director position at the Dia Art Foundation, currently occupied by Jessica Morgan. (ARTnews)

Bridget Finn Joins Reyes Projects  Finn will leave her position as director of Mitchell-Innes & Nash’s contemporary programming to become managing director of the young gallery in Birmingham, Michigan. (ARTnews)

American Friends of the Israel Museum Elect New President  Jill Bernstein will take over from outgoing president Stacey Bronfman. Bernstein, who concurrently serves on the boards of the Brooklyn Museum, the Hirshhorn, and an Israeli nonprofit called Artis, was appointed alongside three new board members. (ARTnews)


See the New Renderings for Peter Zumthor’s LACMA – The Swiss architect has revealed new images of his designs for LACMA’s planned permanent collection building. The space also has a new name—the David Geffen Galleries—following the entertainment executive’s $150 million pledge to the project. (dezeen)

Holocaust Survivors’ Holograms Speak Out Steven Spielberg’s Shoah Foundation has unveiled interactive 3D holograms of 13 Holocaust survivors who appear to answer questions posed by viewers. Children at the Illinois Holocaust Museum and Education Center in Skokie, near Chicago, were the first to be educated and amazed by the $5m project. (Press release)

Could This Ghost Portrait Be Mary, Queen of Scots?  A research project has uncovered an unfinished painting hiding beneath another 16th-century portrait attributed to Dutch painter Adrian Vanson. The ghostly image, which bears striking similarities to contemporary depictions of Mary, Queen of Scots, was revealed by x-ray photography. Happy Halloween! (Press release)



“Richard Diebenkorn: Works on Paper, 1955-1967”
Van Doren Waxter – New York
November 8 – January 20


Organized in partnership with the Richard Diebenkorn Foundation, this show examines the formative years the pioneering American abstract artist spent in the Bay Area, melding elements of abstraction and figuration in a way that was considered sacrilegious by the avant-garde’s purists at the time. The works, which depict such intimate domestic subjects as the view from Diebenkorn’s studio window and his cherished dog, bring to life a time of great creativity and artistic ferment—eventually culminating in the artist’s triumphant return to abstraction. (All images of Diebenkorn works below are courtesy of Van Doren Waxter.)


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