Art Industry News: The Louvre, Famed Onetime Employer of Wonder Woman, Has Hired a Full-Time Art Sleuth + Other Stories

Plus, Kandis Williams wins the Hammer's $100,000 award, and Art Basel is jumping on the podcast bandwagon.

Wonder Woman at the Louvre. Photo: DC Entertainment.

Art Industry News is a daily digest of the most consequential developments coming out of the art world and art market. Now, we’ve got a new, streamlined look—with all the same attention to what you need to know on this Friday, July 16.


Two Rising Stars Get Shows During Art Basel Miami Beach – The London-based painter Jadé Fadojutimi and the New York-based artist Hugh Hayden will open individual solo shows at the ICA Miami on November 30, a hotly coveted schedule slot during Art Basel Miami Beach. It will be the first American museum exhibition for Fadojutimi; Hayden will new sculptural works exploring themes of racism, identity, and history. (Press release)

Pornhub Debuts Museum Guide for Classical Nudes – Hungarian-Italian adult performer (and ex-wife of Jeff Koons) Ilona “Cicciolina” Staller stands in as Botticelli’s The Birth of Venus at the Uffizi in Florence as part of a new campaign by PornHub, which has created a new platform to promote appreciation for erotic classical art. PornHub Classic Nudes visits the Met, the Prado, the Louvre, and other buttoned-up museums to explore the porn-like aspects of their classical art collections. (Ad Age)

Meet the Louvre’s Detective Hunting for Looted Art – Emmanuelle Polack has a golden rule for sniffing out looted art: follow the money. (Apparently she and Wonder Woman don’t have too much overlap in their roles.) Hired by the Louvre in 2020, Polack is now the face of the museum’s restitution investigations as the institution works to correct what some see as inaction on the subject. In March, it put its entire collection online, including more than 1,700 stolen artworks that came to France after World War II, because no owners came forward. Still, the moves have not kept the lawsuits from coming. (New York Times)

SFMOMA Cuts Back on Programs – Citing pandemic pressures, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art is shuttering its Artists Gallery, which sells and lends work by more than 300 contemporary Bay Area artists, and ending its well-regarded online publication “Open Space.” The museum will also discontinue its film program and cut seven staff positions. (KQED)


Kandis Williams Wins Mohn Award – The Hammer Museum has named Williams the winner of its 2020 Mohn Award, one of the largest monetary prizes for artists in the U.S., following her inclusion in the Hammer’s “Made in L.A.” biennial. Williams, who was recently profiled by Artnet News, will receive $100,000. (Artforum)

Art Basel Is Starting a Podcast – The global art-fair brand is jumping on the podcasting bandwagon with a biweekly show featuring global director Marc Spiegler as host. The first episode, released July 19, features architect David Adjaye and collector Kasseem Dean, also known as producer Swizz Beatz. (Press release)

Getty Doles Out $1.5 Million in Paper for Paper – The Paper Project Initiative has awarded $1.5 million to support 19 institutions pursuing research in graphic arts. Winners include the Chrysler Museum of Art, which will examine how African printmaking techniques relate to the work of modern printmakers like Jacob Lawrence. (Press release)

Amrita Sher-Gil’s Painting Flies at Auction  A small 1938 painting by Amrita Sher-Gil, who has been called “India’s Frida Kahlo,” became the second-highest-priced Indian artwork to sell at auction in India. It fetched $5.1 million at Mumbai’s Saffronart auction house on July 12. (Hindustan Times)


A New Space Museum Opens in China – New York-based Ennead Architects are behind Shanghai’s newest museum, the Shanghai Astronomy Museum, a 420,000-square-foot building that documents China’s role in the space race. Some say the project is propaganda (but definitely no one in China). In a recent article, the Chinese government compared space exploration to its contested claims over islands in the South China Sea. (Fast Company)

Aerial view of Shanghai Astronomy Museum. Photo: VCG/VCG via Getty Images.

Aerial view of Shanghai Astronomy Museum. Photo: VCG/VCG via Getty Images.

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