Monday, November 14, 2011


  • BENTONVILLE, ARKANSAS. Alice Walton’s long-awaited Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art finally opened its doors to the public on Friday. The museum is "endowed with $800 million from the Walton Family Foundation" -- much to the dismay of the disenfranchised Wal-Mart employees who are teaming up with Occupy Wall Street to protest the construction of the museum -- and admission will be free. The collection is said to be "far from comprehensive" with American impressionism in particular needing "beefing up." You may recall that last year the Chancery Court for the State of Tennessee rejected (twice) the deal struck between Fisk University and Walton to share the Stieglitz Collection because it did not "closely approximate" O'Keeffe's intent for making the charitable gift. The college and the museum did, however, come up with a ("donor-friendly," of course) arrangement "whereby the two institutions will host the collection in alternate years."
  • NEW YORK. For those not able to make their way to Bentonville, the "fiercely political" Diego Rivera exhibition opened at MOMA today. The highlight of this "small, jewel-box exhibition" are the five portable murals created by Rivera for his retrospective at MOMA in 1931 are reunited in the exhibition.
  • FRANCE. Remember the story about Picasso's electrician being charged with stealing 271 never-before-seen works by the artist? Artinfo has now reported that the Calder Foundation is accusing a "retired French fabricator of forging the artist's mobiles." In light of the unfortunate incident back in 1999, let's hope they don't destroy the nine mobiles until they've been conclusively proven to be fakes (though it's also not the first time a fabricator is accused of ).
  • LONDON. The hunt for missing government art continues in London. I suppose the fact that the department responsible for maintaining proper records had "woefully inadequate" funding would likely absolve it and the government of any legal liability for lost art. "Outrageous news" nonetheless.
I'll be posting on last week's contemporary sales in New York in a couple of days but for now, I leave you with an excellent op piece in The Art Newspaper about the art buyers of tomorrow and how "of all the forces that will affect the [art] market, demographic change is probably the most important."

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