Art Industry News: An Arts Critic Unpacks the Chilling Photos of ‘Childish, Stupid, Dangerous People’ Who Stormed the US Capitol Yesterday + Other News
Plus, Korean artist Kim Tschang-Yeul has died at 91 and the Metropolitan Museum of Art hired a new contemporary art curator.
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 Thursday, January 7.
Dozens of Army Encampments in Ancient Rome Discovered – A study published in the magazine Geosciences details a remarkable discovery: more than 60 2,000-year-old ancient Roman army camps, some measuring as large as 37 acres, in Spain. Researchers note that the finds follow the army’s trajectory as it marched through the Iberian Peninsula as part of the Romans’ conquest of Hispania. Experts used remote sensors, airborne laser scanning, and aerial photography to pinpoint the long-hidden sites. (Fox)
Lawsuit Over Case of Hidden Art Seeks $100 Million in Damages – A four-year legal battle over $60 million worth of missing Russian art, which Shchukin Gallery alleges was stolen by Russian financier Rustam Iseev, has taken a turn this year. On January 1, Shchukin’s lawyers filed a new lawsuit asking a New York court to hand over a “secret letter” detailing the location of the five early 20th-century paintings. Three works by Kazimir Malevich and two by Natalia Goncharova were taken, according to Iseev, as collateral for a $2 million loan. (The Art Newspaper)
Art Critics Process Imagery of Pro-Trump Riot – OK, so it’s true that the first people you want to hear from after yesterday’s dramatic events at the US Capitol are not (checks notes) art critics. But it’s also true that the day will be remembered by what photographers on the ground captured. And boy, was there a lot to take in. The New Yorker‘s Vinson Cunningham breaks down one picture in particular: of a man standing at the dais of the Senate chamber with his fist in the air. “He doesn’t know how free he is,” Cunningham writes, “or at whose expense, or how long the show will go on after today.” The protestors, he says, were “childish, stupid, dangerous, and confirmed in their fear and anger by a President who exemplifies each of these traits in their worst and most absurd extremities.” (New Yorker)
The Walker Amps Up Its Effort to Collect Local Artists – The Walker Art Center in Minneapolis has added 39 works by Minnesota artists to its collection. The acquisitions are part of a broader effort on the part of director Mary Ceruti to grow its holdings of local talent, including examples by Siah Armajani, Frank Big Bear, and Julie Buffalohead. (Mpls St Paul)
This Artist Is Selling Paintings for $100 Each – It’s an art-market story with heart: In an effort to subvert art-world economics, Vancouver-based artist Jean Smith is offering her paintings for $100 a pop on Facebook. For the past 25 years, she has lived monastically, selling 10 pieces per month to break even. Her works typically sell within five minutes of her posting them online. (NYT Magazine)
Monica King Closes Tribeca Space – Monica King, a veteran of Pace Gallery and Paul Kasmin, has closed the eponymous gallery she opened in Tribeca in 2019. In its place, she will launch Monica King Projects, a nomadic exhibition platform and creative retreat in Litchfield County. Her roving program will debut with a solo presentation by Los Angeles-based artist Judithe Hernández in New York later this year. (Press release)
COMINGS & GOINGS
Artist Kim Tschang-Yeul Dies at 91 – The Korean artist celebrated for his “water drop” paintings, which fused hyperrealism, Pop art, and Chinese calligraphy, has died. Along with Nam June Paik and Lee Ufan, Kim is regarded as one of the country’s most influential contemporary artists. (Artforum)
The Met Hires a New Contemporary Art Curator – Akili Tommasino has been named associate curator of Modern and contemporary art at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. A scholar of the 20th-century avant-garde, an advocate for emerging artists, and a leader in arts education, he previously served as associate curator of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. (Press release)
FOR ART’S SAKE
Archeologists Find Medieval Treasure in a Polish Field – Thousands of valuable artifacts emerged while archeologists conducted excavations in a field near Słuszków, Poland. The artifacts, which include silver ingots, two gold rings, and two wedding bands, date back nearly 900 years. The team discovered the treasure after hearing rumors from villagers that there was a trove in the area. (Archeology)
Oxford University Drops Name of Enslaver – All Souls College has removed the name of Christopher Codrington, a slave owner, from its library as part of an ongoing effort to reckon with its history and “draw attention to the presence of enslaved people on the Codrington plantations.” The library is not, however, removing from the premises a large statue of Codrington, who donated some £10,000 to the college upon his death in 1710. (The Art Newspaper)
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