Art Industry News: The King of Pop Art? Portrait Gallery to Explore Michael Jackson’s Impact + More Must-Read Stories

Plus, David Hammons curates a show at MoMA and Maurizio Cattelan launches a conceptual Instagram account.

Michael Jackson performs during the Halftime show as the Dallas Cowboys take on the Buffalo Bills in Super Bowl XXVII at Rose Bowl on January 31, 1993.(Photo by George Rose/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 this Wednesday, September 20.


documenta 14 Reports Record Visitor Numbers – The financially strapped quinquennial, which closed on Sunday, received 891,500 visitors over 100 days in Kassel. A further 339,000 reportedly attended the Athens branch, though it is unclear whether visitors to both events were counted twice. (ARTnews)

Germany Creates Online Database to Fight Looting – The German government has launched a website to explain the complex—and controversial—new German cultural property regulations that came into effect last year. The site also features a database of cultural items banned from sale abroad. (The Art Newspaper)

Exhibition to Explore Michael Jackson’s Impact on Art – The first exhibition to examine the King of Pop’s influence on contemporary art will open at the National Portrait Gallery in London next summer, coinciding with with would have been Jackson’s 60th birthday. Participating artists include Andy Warhol, Jordan Wolfson, Faith Ringgold, and Jeff Koons. (TAN)

How a Fake Mondrian Ended Up at the Stedelijk – After a Mondrian biographer discovered a painting on view at the Bozar in Brussels last year was likely a fake, Bozar pointed the finger at the Stedelijk Museum, which had recommended the painting without properly vetting it. The Stedelijk says a museum’s role is not to determine a work’s authenticity. (New York Times)


Preview Frieze London’s NSFW Art Show – Once considered too sexually graphic to be shown, works by nine radical feminist artists will be on display at Frieze London in a special section this year. According to Frieze director Victoria Siddall, “Sex Work: Feminist Art & Radical Politics” will be a celebration not only of the artists themselves, but also of the galleries brave enough to support them. (The Guardian)

FOG Fair Releases 2018 Exhibitor List – The exhibitor list for the fifth edition of San Francisco’s FOG Design+Art fair, to be held January 11–14, is out. Forty-five galleries are participating, including a number of established new additions such as Sadie Coles and Stuart Shave/Modern Art. (ARTnews)


West Kowloon Authority Taps New Chair – Henry Tang Ying-yen’s two-year tenure as chairperson of Hong Kong’s West Kowloon Cultural District Authority begins October 1. He previously served as the cultural hub’s first-ever chair from 2008–2011. (ArtAsiaPacific)

Theaster Gates Wins $100,000 Prize – The Nasher Sculpture Center in Dallas, Texas, has selected the Chicago-based artist as its 2018 laureate, a distinction that comes with a $100,000 prize. Gates, who began his career as a potter and has stretched the definition of sculpture, will receive the prize in a ceremony on April 7, and has said he will use it to branch into literature. (Press release)

Birmingham Museum Names New Director – Graham Boettcher, who first joined the Alabama institution as a curatorial fellow in 2006, steps into his new role today. Among his first tasks: to search for a new chief curator to replace him in his previous role. (Press release)

Meredith Monk Gets Gish Prize – The award, which comes with a $250,000 cash prize, honors accomplished boundary-pushing artists from all disciplines. The composer, vocalist, and artist Monk joins an impressive list of previous honorees including Spike Lee, Trisha Brown, and Bob Dylan. (Press release)


David Hammons to Organize MoMA Show – The elusive artist will become the latest to curate an exhibition for MoMA’s ongoing “Artist’s Choice” series. Titled “Charles White—Leonardo da Vinci. Curated by David Hammons,” the show of work from the museum’s collection opens October 7. (ARTnews)

How Maja Hoffmann’s LUMA Foundation Is Changing the Game – The Frank Gehry-designed headquarters and 20-acre campus of the pharmaceutical heiress’s foundation are expected to open in 2018. Hoffman has worked with five high-profile advisors, including Hans Ulrich Obrist, to build LUMA Arles as a new kind of arts institution not unlike a think tank. (ARTnews)

VCUarts Launches New Arts Research Institute – The Virginia Commonwealth University’s School of the Arts is launching the first-ever arts research office to apply artistic practice as a rigorous research method on par with science. The new hybrid institute will be “directed at responding to current issues of our time and a complex future.” (Press release)

Maurizio Cattelan Gets ‘Single Post’ Instagram – The Italian artist has signed up for Instagram, follows exactly zero people, and has been posting one image before deleting it and replacing it with another. “The Single Post Instagram” has so far contained some very interesting imagery (if you can catch it in time), but one wonders if the artist has been made aware of Instagram Stories. (ARTnews)

Screenshot of Maurizio Cattelan’s Instagram at time of publishing.

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