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

Get caught up on the latest market moves, fast.

René Magritte, L’ami intime (The Intimate Friend), (1958). Photo: Courtesy of the Gilbert and Lena Kaplan Collection and Christie’s London.

Art Fairs

Art Basel has announced the 285 exhibitors for its 2024 event, which will return to the Messeplatz from June 13 to 16. More than 20 new galleries will participate in this edition, which is the first to be led by former Gallery Weekend Berlin director Maike Cruse, who was tapped to helm the flagship Swiss fair last year. (Artnet News)

– Frieze will return to The Shed in New York this May, with stalwarts Gagosian, Gladstone Gallery, David Zwirner, and Pace returning, and Luna Luna curator Lumi Tan taking on the Focus section. (Press Release)

Auction Houses

René Magritte‘s L’ami intime (The Intimate Friend) will be offered at Christie’s The Art of the Surreal evening sale in London this March. Estimated to fetch up to $64 million, the piece hasn’t been up for sale since 1980. (Press release)

Bruno Vinciguerra, who has led Bonhams as executive chairman and global CEO since 2018, is stepping down from his position. Executive chair Hans-Kristian Hoejsgaard, who joined the board in 2020, will lead the company in the interim. (Artnet News)

– A painting created by the four members of The Beatles while on tour in Japan in 1966 has sold at Christie’s for $1.7 million. The painting, known as Images of a Woman, was part of Christie’s The Exceptional Sale on February 1 and made nearly triple the high presale estimate of $600,000.  (Artnet News)


Lehmann Maupin has announced that they will open a pop-up space in Milan this spring, bringing a group show including work by Hernan Bas, Mandy El-Sayegh, and Nari Ward to Italy. (Press Release)

David Zwirner has picked up representation of Raymond Saunders in tandem with Andrew Kreps; Vielmetter in Los Angeles now represents Jared McGriff; Rose Easton has taken on representation of Jan Gatewood; Silverlens has picked up Imelda Cajipe Endaya, Keka Enriquez, and Catalina Africa; Volte Art Projects now represents Marina Abramović, Ghiora Aharoni, Navjot Altaf, Rashid Rana, and Shambhaviin the Middle East; Massimodecarlo now represents Yan Ping. (Press releases)

Harkawik has announced that their New York space is moving from Orchard Street to Tribeca this June, beginning with a solo presentation of work by Hend Samir. (Press release)

Institutions, Biennials, and Organizations 

Courtney J. Martin will be joining the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation as executive director in the spring from the Yale Center for British Art (YCBA), where she is currently the Paul Mellon Director. She will follow in the footsteps of Kathy Halbriech. (Press release)

Venus Lau has been appointed as the new director at Museum MACAN in Jakarta, Indonesia. (Press release)

Ebony L. Haynes has been appointed editor-in-residence at Topical Cream.

– Japan’s Aichi Triennale has announced the theme for its sixth edition, “A Time Between Ashes and Roses.” Organized by artistic director Hoor Al Qasimi, the event will run from September 13 to November 30, 2025. (Press release)

Trellis Art Fund has been announced as a new grantmaking foundation supporting visual artists based in the U.S. Each year, the fund will award 12 two-year unrestricted grants totaling $100,000 each. (Press release)

Legal News

– Two suspects have been arrested for stealing a print by Marc Chagall from New York’s Carlton Fine Arts gallery and police have recovered and returned the work, purportedly worth $100,000. (Artnet News)

– The U.K. has amended the 2022 Charities Act for museums and galleries seeking to repatriate objects. The government has confirmed it will exclude overseas transfers of property from the act, meaning institutions will still need to seek the Charity Commission’s approval before proceeding. The introduction of the act had fostered hope that less bureaucratic oversight would empower museum trustees to restitute objects without the need for additional approvals. (Artnet News)

– Italy’s undersecretary for culture, Vittorio Sgarbi, has stepped down amid a rising tide of controversies. He is currently being investigated over allegations that he laundered stolen art. Last week, he shocked the nation by verbally attacking two journalists who raised the matter. He is also accused by Italy’s antitrust authority of accepting lucrative fees to appear at cultural events. (Artnet News)

Paint Drippings is excerpted from The Back Room, our lively recap funneling only the week’s must-know 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.  

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