From a Mind-Blowing Milestone for Artificial Intelligence Art to the Fire at Dia: Beacon: The Best and Worst of the Art World This Week

Catch up on this weeks news—fast.

Obvious Art's ??? ? ??? ? ?? [??? ? (?))] + ?? [???(? − ?(?(?)))], Portrait of Edmond de Belamy, Generative Adversarial Network print on canvas (2018). 


AI Extravaganza – After Banksy’s art-shredding spectacular at Sotheby’s, Christie’s managed to pull off an even more high-tech stunt this week, successfully selling the first AI-generated artwork at auction for a staggering $432,500, more than 40 times its estimate.

JR Takes on America’s Gun Problem – TIME’s special edition focusing on gun control in America features a stirring, epic artwork created by street artist JR. The artist traveled around the country to meet with activists, politicians, and those affected by gun violence, who he photographed and filmed as part of a multiplatform artwork.

Open Access at the Art Institute of Chicago – The landmark Chicago-based museum has made more than 44,000 images free to download, thanks to open-access software.

Doctor’s Prescribe a Dose of Art – The healing powers of art will soon be put to the test, as doctors in Quebec are rolling out a pilot program that will allow prescriptions to include museum visits.

An Old Master Becomes a New Hero – A powerful painting by the female Renaissance painter Artemisia Gentileschi fetched a whopping $2 million at auction in Vienna. Gentileschi has been adopted as an icon of the #MeToo movement, and the market is reflecting her newfound popularity.

The Albertina Museum Gets a Multimillion-Dollar Donation – The Vienna-based museum received a gift of $103 million, thanks to businessman Karlheinz Essl, whose collection includes work by Tony Cragg, Georg Baselitz, and Neo Rauch.

Paul Allen Was a Visionary in Art, Too – A look back at how the late Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen amassed a trove of artworks including pieces by Impressionists and contemporary artists, and the mark his art philanthropy leaves behind.

Heavenly Hilma – Ben Davis looks at the occult influences on the revelatory new show of work by Hilma af Klint at the Guggenheim—and says that they make her resonate with the present moment.



The Museum of the Bible’s Bogus Scrolls – The controversial museum built on Hobby Lobby money has removed five of its Dead Sea Scroll fragments after forensic evidence proved they are not, in fact, ancient objects.

Sagrada Familia’s Financial Woes – Trustees of Antoni Gaudí’s over-the-top masterpiece La Sagrada Familia will have to pay $41 million in fines over the next decade, because its construction—still incomplete after nearly a century and a half—has never been blessed with a building permit.

Climate Change Is Threatening Cultural Treasures – A new report from UNESCO reveals that scores of cultural heritage sites are at risk due to current and global warming and other impending ecological flux.

Light, Space… and Fire at Dia:Beacon – A painting by Light and Space artist Mary Corse started a blaze at Dia:Beacon in upstate New York due to an overheated electrical component.

Trump Was the Sole Bidder for a Portrait of Himself – A portrait of Donald Trump is part of a contentious lawsuit, this week his lawyer claims that the $10,000 in charity money that Trump paid for the work only came to pass because no one else bid on the depiction of the mogul.

A Miracle in Massachusetts? – A seven-alarm fire broke out in Massachusetts this week, engulfing a 150-year-old church in flames, but uncannily sparing a single object: a luminous painting of Jesus Christ, that was remarkably unscathed by the inferno.

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