Paint Drippings: Everything You Missed in the Art Industry Last Week

Sotheby's launches a new financial product, Shanghai's ART021 will create a new Hong Kong fair, and more industry news.

An exterior view of Sotheby's in New York City. Photo: Dia Dipasupil/Getty Images.

Paint Drippings is excerpted from The Back Room, our lively recap funneling only the week’s must-know art industry intel into a nimble read you’ll actually enjoy. Artnet News Pro members get exclusive access—subscribe now to receive this in your inbox every Friday. 

Correction: The newsletter version of this roundup misstated one of the banks involved with Sotheby’s asset-backed security. That bank is Morgan Stanley, not J.P. Morgan.

Art Fairs

– Just ahead of Expo Chicago, which was acquired by Frieze last year, the fair group’s owner, Endeavor, announced it will be taken private in a $13 billion deal with Silver Lake, a private equity firm. As of yet, there are no details as to how the acquisition may impact some of the entertainment firm’s holdings. The deal is expected to be complete by early 2025; it represents one of the largest private equity buyouts within the last decade. (Financial Times)

– The New Art Dealers Alliance, in partnership with The Community, will launch a new fair in Paris in October that will serve as a satellite event to Paris+ par Art Basel. Called The Salon by NADA and The Community, the new fair will run October 17 to 20. (Press release)

– Shanghai’s ART021 fair group has shared its plan to expand to Hong Kong within the next year. The announcement follows the conclusion of this year’s edition of Art Basel Hong Kong, which saw a return to pre-pandemic exhibitor numbers. The new Hong Kong fair will feature around 80 galleries and be invite only, according to the organizers. (Artnet News)

– An untitled painting attributed to the Brazilian artist Tarsila do Amaral that was being offered by OMA Gallery during São Paulo’s SP Arte last week was a forgery, according to Jones Bergamin, the president and director of one of Brazil’s leading auction houses and secondary-market galleries, Bolsa de Arte. (Artnews)

Auction Houses

– Sotheby’s is launching a new asset-backed security by borrowing about $500 million through bonds backed by personal loans made to art collectors. The financial product, the first of its kind to be offered by an auction house, is being structured by banking partners including Barclays, BNP Paribas, and Morgan Stanley. The house first initiated discussions about the initiative with investors last year, but paused the launch amid the regional banking crisis that swept the U.S. (Bloomberg)

– Speaking of upping the finance game, Christie’s has invested in the U.S. lender Art Money, which will allow buyers to pay over time on art bought at the house’s sales for between $1,000 and $1 million. Like other lending services, potential buyers would need to apply and would receive a preapproved limit up to which they can spend; payments can be made in installments over a maximum of 10 months. Art Money takes an additional fee from the buyer of up to 10 percent of the total invoice, which includes Christie’s buyer’s premium of 26 percent. (Press release)

– Sotheby’s Modern and contemporary evening sale featuring “The Now” in Hong Kong hauled in HK$673 million ($86 million) with fees. The scale of the sales was significantly smaller than the past two spring evening sales in Hong Kong, a possible indictor of the difficulty in securing consignments in this weaker market. (Artnet News)

a woman stands against a white wall. she wears a dark blue dress. she is identified as Raffaella Zerilli.

Raffaella Zerilli. Photo: Benjamin Hofer. Courtesy of Lehmann Maupin, New York, Seoul, and London.


– After seven years under the combined directorship of Daniel Herleth and Bärbel Trautwein, Galerie Barbara Weiss will become Trautwein Herleth. Concurrently, they are establishing an archive of Galerie Barbara Weiss. (Press release)

– D’Lan Contemporary, a leading Australian gallery championing First Nations art founded in 2016, will open a new space in New York, at 25 East 73rd Street, later this month. (Press release)

– Raffaela Zerilli has been appointed as Lehman Maupin’s director of Central Europe based between Berlin and Zurich. In this newly created role, Zerilli will work alongside London-based Partner Isabella Icoz to support the gallery’s growth in Europe. (Press release)

– Magenta Plains has added Jane Swavely to its roster, Xavier Hufkens now represents Mark Manders in collaboration with Tanya Bonakdar and Gallery Koyanagi, Ruby Sky Stiler has joined Alexander Gray Associates, John McAllister is now represented by Massimodecarlo in collaboration with Almine Rech, and John O’Brien is now represented by Matthew Brown. (Press releases)

Institutions and Biennials

 British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s government has clashed with British Museum chair George Osborne over an attempt to interfere in the appointment of Nicholas Cullinan as the new director of the institution, announced two weeks ago. Osborne reportedly rejected Downing Street’s demand to supply the government with two potential names for the role in advance of the selection. (Artnet News)

– Eike Schmidt, ex-director of the Uffizi Galleries in Florence, has finally announced plans to run for mayor of the Tuscan city. The German art historian has been teasing the idea to the press for many months, repeatedly stating that he could neither “confirm or deny” the rumors while publicly criticizing the current center-left mayor Dario Nardella. (Artnet News)

– Bard College’s Center for Curatorial Studies in Upstate New York has received a large donation of archival materials from dealer Gavin Brown, who helped build the careers of major artists like Arthur Jafa, Laura Owens, Peter Doig, LaToya Ruby Frazier, and Mark Leckey. Brown shuttered his own influential space in 2020 after merging with Gladstone Gallery. (Artnet News)

– Akinbode Akinbiyi, Cécile B. Evans, Kate Newby, Michael Parekōwhai, and Womanifesto are among the artists who will participate in the next edition of the Sharjah Biennial, which will run February 6 to June 15, 2025. (Press release)

Tech and Legal News

– The NFT website, which launched last year and quickly provoked the ire of the world’s largest art fair conglomerate, Art Basel, has shut down. In March 2023, Art Basel sent a cease-and-desist letter to Digital Basel and accused the company of copyright infringement. (Artnews)

– A trove of valuable paintings by famous Old Master artists like Francisco Goya and Francisco de Zurbarán worth over €4 million ($4.3 million) has been used to pay off a tax bill of €4.3 million ($4.7 million) owed to the local government of Álava in Spain’s Basque Country. The identity of the indebted individual was undisclosed, leading to speculation about the origin of the collection. (Artnet News)


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