News

  • New Turner Gallery Missing a Vital Ingredient

    Barcelona, Bilbao and Glasgow have all enjoyed a cultural regeneration by celebrating their most famous sons, Louise Jury writes in the Independent. So there was no reason why the English seaside town of Margate should not follow suit with J. M. W. Turner. But the team behind the Turner Centre, the new £20 million venue for the visual arts due to open in 2007, admitted Wednesday that they had no Turners to display.

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  • Malevich's Heirs Sue City of Amsterdam

    The heirs of Kazimir Malevich are suing the city of Amsterdam to recover fourteen of his paintings, the BBC reports. They claim the city bought the works of art illegally, for a pittance, in 1950. They are now said to be worth at least $150 million. The relatives have taken the case to a court in the US, claiming that Amsterdam's Stedelijk Museum should hand back the contested paintings.

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  • Russian Collector to Bring Fabergé Eggs Back Home

    A Russian billionaire has bought the entire Fabergé collection owned by the family of Malcolm Forbes and is taking it back to Russia, Carol Vogel reports in the New York Times. Just two months before the nine imperial Easter eggs, along with some 180 other pieces, were to be auctioned by Sotheby's in New York, Victor Vekselberg, one of a new generation of Russian industrialists, bought what he called “perhaps the most significant example of our cultural heritage outside Russia,” according to a statement released by the auction house yesterday. The price was not disclosed, but experts familiar

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  • Anglican Dean Urges Church to Reach Out to Artists

    Dr. John Moses, the dean of London's St. Paul’s Cathedral, spoke on Tuesday of the need for a reinvigorated relationship between art and Christianity, Martha Linden reports in The Scotsman. He was speaking at the launch of “Presence: Images of Christ for the Third Millennium,” an exhibition at St. Paul’s of work by artists including Tracey Emin and Bill Viola. In his remarks, Moses said, “I happen to believe that if the Church is serious in working with people where they are today then it needs to rediscover a working relationship with artists of all traditions.”

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  • Walker Art Center Unveils Plans for Sculpture Garden

    As the construction crew for the Walker Art Center's $92 million addition prepared to hoist the last steel beam into place this week, the Walker released the first images of its new sculpture garden, Linda Mack reports in the Minneapolis Star Tribune. French landscape architect Michel Desvigne has proposed covering a steep hill with one thousand birch and aspen trees, meadows of bluestem prairie grass, and some areas of mowed lawn. The four-acre garden will expand the eleven-acre Minneapolis Sculpture Garden, which drew 328,000 visitors last year.

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  • V&A to Open Islamic Art Gallery

    The Victoria and Albert Museum is to open a new gallery of Islamic art with a £5.4 million ($9.9 million) donation from the automobile company Hartwell, which is part of the Saudi corporation Abdul Latif Jameel Group. As the BBC reports, the gallery will house treasures from the V&A's collection of more than ten thousand ancient Islamic objects from the Middle East.

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  • Milwaukee Art Museum Secures Funds for Calatrava's Design

    The Milwaukee Art Museum said Tuesday it has moved $15 million closer to its goal of paying off the remaining $25 million needed to complete the funding for its Santiago Calatrava–designed lakefront expansion, James Auer reports in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Sheldon B. Lubar, chairman of the museum's financial development committee, told the board of trustees Monday his group has secured gifts and pledges totaling more than $15 million toward the cost of the project. All of the commitments, including an additional gift promised by Lubar, are contingent on the full $25 million being raised

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  • Israel Demands Removal of Work from Ann Frank Museum

    Israel has demanded the removal of a “horrifying” exhibit at the Anne Frank Museum in Amsterdam that includes caricatures comparing Ariel Sharon to Adolf Hitler, Chris McGreal reports in The Guardian. The museum has defended the exhibit, saying it is intended to explore the limits of free speech and includes criticism of the caricatures, which appear in video footage of a demonstration against Israel. Natan Sharansky, a minister in Sharon's cabinet, said the caricatures were further evidence of anti-Semitism in Europe.

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  • Controversy Boosts Museum Attendance in Stockholm

    Ever since Israeli Ambassador to Sweden Zvi Mazel set off an international uproar by damaging Snow White and the Madness of Truth, an installation at Stockholm's Museum of National Antiquities, the number of visitors to the museum has soared, Haaretz reports. Some 1,400 visitors now tour the museum daily, the number that used to visit in a week. Museum director Kristian Berg says that those who see the installation, which features a picture of a Palestinian suicide bomber, do not agree with Mazel's interpretation that it is anti-Semitic or anti-Israel and that the work has been “politically

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  • A Klee Windfall for the Moderna Museet

    Stockholm's museum of modern and contemporary art announced on Monday that seven works by Paul Klee had been donated to its collection, the Chicago Tribune reports. The paintings were given to the Moderna Museet by Swedish professor and collector Carl Gemzell. “The donation is one of the most important that Moderna Museet has received in many years and the paintings will be an important complement to the museum's collection of early European modernism,” the museum said in a press release.

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  • Survey Reveals Declining Attendance at Museum Shows

    The Art Newspaper's annual survey of exhibition attendance at more than eight hundred museums in America and Europe in 2003 reveals an overall decline in the number of visitors. Only 190 exhibitions surveyed pulled in more than one thousand visitors a day last year, compared with 215 in 2002. The Metropolitan Museum of Art's “Leonardo da Vinci, Master Draftsman” was the most popular show, with an average of 6,863 visitors per day, closely followed by Thomas Struth's midcareer survey, also at the Met.

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  • Vasari's Last Supper to Be Restored

    Giorgio Vasari's Last Supper is to be restored, thirty-eight years after it was severely damaged by floods that killed thirty people in Florence, John Hooper reports in The Guardian. The painting, regarded as one the greatest Mannerist renderings of Christ's last meal with his apostles, was finished in 1546. After floodwaters swept through Florence in 1966, the work was found in a mixture of mud, detritus, and heating oil.

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