From the Mind-Boggling NFT Frenzy to Major Art Job Losses: The Best and Worst of the Art World This Week

Catch up on this week's news, fast.

Examples of CryptoPunks, tradable digital icons based on Etherium. Image courtesy Larva Labs.


The Crypto Craze Rages On – An NFT work by Beeple sold for $6.6 million, while bidding for the artist’s work Everydays skyrocketed up to $2.3 million at Christie’s—and the sale doesn’t close for two weeks.

A Salvador Dalí Discovery – It turns out that the Surrealist was using scientific methods to create his ghostly rendition of the Last Supper.

WTF, More NFTS? – Artist and raconteur Kenny Schacter reports from inside the NFT frenzy, and a designer sold $450,000 worth of “imaginary furniture” in less than 10 minutes.

A Secret on The Scream – Researchers have solved the mystery of an ominous inscription on Edvard Munch’s famous painting.

Remembering Breonna Taylor – The Speed Art Museum in Louisville is staging an exhibition about the Louisville native, a year after her death.

An Ancient Kangaroo – Scientists discovered Australia’s oldest rock art in the form of a (very realistic) painting of a kangaroo.

Mega Collection Hits the Block – Works from Texas oil heiress Anne Marion’s collection will hit the auction block at Sotheby’s this spring.

Catnip to Collectors – Riding the recent blockchain bonanza, a Nyan Cat NFT sold for nearly $600,000 at a Nifty Gateway auction.

Frieze Issues Its Art Award – The artist, poet, and chef Precious Okoyomon won the 2021 prize, which comes with a $30,000 commission and a solo presentation in New York.

Rare Van Gogh Comes to Market – A Vincent Van Gogh landscape that’s never been shown in public is heading to auction, where it could fetch $10 million.

New Deal Nostalgia Won’t Save Us – With the struggling art world looking to the history of Roosevelt’s New Deal art projects as a model, Ben Davis looks for lessons in the actual history of art in the Great Depression.

Black Art History – As part of a series for Black History Month, Folasade Ologundudu talked to art historians Bridget R. Cooks and Darby English about current debates in the field about representation.


‘Charging Bull’ Sculptor Dies at 80 – Arturo Di Modica, a sculptor made famous by his iconic sculpture of a bull installed at Wall Street, died just weeks after his 80th birthday.

Cities Lose Arts Jobs – A new study released this week reports that New York City lost two-thirds of its arts and entertainment jobs in 2020. California also saw severe losses, indicating similar trends around the US.

The Whitney Axes More Staffers – The New York museum laid off more than a dozen employees as it continues to suffer from financial setbacks.

Capitol Damage Costs – Curators of the US Capitol Art Collection say that they require $25,000 to repair works damaged during the January insurrection.

Jeff Koons Found Guilty – The serial appropriator was found guilty of copyright infringement, and will have to pay a higher fine than the earlier court ruled.

Twitter Hates Juergen Teller’s Shoot – Social media commentators were quick to criticize fashion photog Juergen Teller’s new shoot for W magazine, frequently calling them “lazy.”

England Museums Stay Closed – Museums must stay closed for another three months, while galleries can open in April, according to prime minister Boris Johnson’s reopening plan.

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