From a Historic Duchamp Gift to Brazil’s Devastating Museum Blaze: The Best and Worst of the Art World This Week

Catch up on this weeks news—fast.

A fire burns at the National Museum of Brazil, Rio de Janeiro. Photo by Buda Mendes/Getty Images.


Fair Trade Deal – Art Basel, Frieze, FIAC, and Gallery Weekend Berlin have all announced more progressive pricing systems for galleries exhibiting at art fairs. The news comes in response to a groundswell among mid-tier operations who were being priced out of buying booths at major international fairs.

Open Market – The downtown Chelsea neighborhood is seeing a recent surge in art gallery rentals, here’s what real estate agents and art dealers say about doubling down on the area by buying up lots of space.

Meet Me in Missouri – The latest Midwestern biennial is Open Spaces in Kansas City, MO. Led by Dan Cameron, the two-month event features musical performances and art installations flung across the sprawling city.

The Gift of Duchamp – Washington DC-based collectors just gave the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden an unparalleled gift of 35 works by Marcel Duchamp. This is the single most important gift to the institution since founder Joseph Hirshhorn’s initial donation, and the one made upon his death in 1981.

Sean Kelly Expands East – The veteran New York dealer announced the impending addition of a project space in Taiwan with a “subtler footprint” than other Western gallerists setting up shop in Asia.

Nan Goldin’s Mission – The photographer Nan Goldin spoke to artnet News about her anti-opioid crusade, and the future of her mission to hold big pharma responsible.


Brazil’s History Burns – The 200-year-old National Museum of Brazil burned to the ground in Rio de Janeiro, taking nearly all of its extensive and irreplaceable collection with it. The institution lost more than 20 million artifacts, including the oldest human remains in the Americas, fossils, and the Scientific Library.

Heaven Can Wait – An exhibition of Andy Warhol’s religious-based work that was planned to go on display at the Vatican has been postponed, according to museum officials.

Mary Boone’s Financial Bungle – The art dealer Mary Boone has pleaded guilty to tax evasion, admitting to using her commercial enterprise to cover up personal expenses.

Salvator Mundi’s Debut Postponed – In a surprising twist, the Louvre Abu Dhabi announced that Salvator Mundi will not go on view for the public. The “last Leonardo” was originally scheduled to be exhibited starting this month; so far, the museum has given no reason for the change of plans.

Art School on Trial – A judge in California ruled that a lawsuit alleging fraud by the Academy of Art University in San Francisco will go to trial. The case centers on allegations of incentivized enrollment, which can cause an influx of under-qualified students.

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