From Our Totally Naked Trip to the Art Museum to the Great Kardashian Koons Kontroversy: The Best and Worst of the Art World This Week

Catch up on this weeks news—fast.

Photo by David Owens for artnet News.

BEST👍

Martin Puryear Is Going to the Venice Biennale – The sculptor will represent the United States at next year’s Venice Biennale, becoming the second African American artist in a row to represent the country row at the art world’s equivalent of the Olympics. Puryear’s submission will be curated by Brooke Kamin Rapaport of the Madison Square Park Conservancy.

Naked and Unafraid – Intrepid artnet News reporter Naomi Rea bravely bared all to explore an art museum along with a group of naturists. The “clothing optional” trip was, unsurprisingly, a revelatory experience.

R-E-S-P-E-C-T the Queen of Soul – The National Portrait Gallery in DC is unveiling a special exhibition in honor of the Queen of Soul, Aretha Franklin, who died this week. On display will be designer Milton Glaser’s iconic homage to Franklin, designed 50 years ago.

A Sphinx Emerges – Construction workers in Egypt stumbled upon an historic find this week—a previously unknown statue of the mythical sphinx. The discovery is hoped to encourage tourism to the country, which has seen a decline in visitors in recent years due to its political turmoil.

Killer Mike on Keeping Museums Alive – The rapper and musician Killer Mike spoke to artnet News about his new position on the board of the High Museum in Atlanta, and how he hopes to inspire future generations through the arts.

The Future of MoMA PS1 – With Klaus Biesenbach conscripted to Los Angeles, there is a vacancy for the coveted directorship of MoMA PS1—so we rounded up a shortlist of possible replacements to head up the contemporary art outpost.

How to Make It in LA – With Biesenbach potentially en route to a turbulent landing at MOCA LA, artnet News surveyed some arts professionals to give their best advice to the latest West Coast import.

Van Goghs Meet at the Met – The Metropolitan Museum of Art is offering visitors a rare opportunity to see all 16 Van Gogh paintings from its collection together for the first time in years.

The Latest Puzzle Piece in Her Diabolical Grand Scheme? – Zardulu, the mysterioso internet shaman behind Selfie Rat, is making her gallery debut this fall at Brooklyn’s TRANSFER gallery.

WORST👎

Kardashians and the Koons – Momager Kris Jenner threw shade on a recent episode of Keeping Up With the Kardashians when Khloe couldn’t recognize a Jeff Koons sculpture… but turns out it wasn’t an original Koons at all, but rather a decorative knockoff rendered in matte gold, likely sold through Neiman Marcus.

Artists Against Cuban Censorship – A government decree in Cuba says that all independent cultural activity must be approved by the state, and a slew of artists and other cultural figures are protesting the law and speaking out about the perils of government whitewashing.

Poster Propaganda? – A new poster designed by Marina Abramović for the annual Barcelona sailing regatta is under fire for alleged political undertones that critics say supports a pro-immigrant agenda. The artist has kept mum on the subject, though the events organizers are rebuffing calls for censorship and plan on using the poster.

Banksy Calls Out an Unauthorized Show – The anonymous street artist was none too pleased to discover—via text message—that a museum in Moscow is exhibiting his work without his permission to hold the country’s first ever Banksy survey.


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