The First Art Newspaper on the Net   Established in 1996 United States Monday, May 21, 2018

New York art sales near $3 billion in two weeks as uber-rich hunt trophies

Sotheby's sold $859 million, including $157.2 million for a Modigliani nude -- the most expensive lot of the season. Courtesy Sotheby's.

by Jennie Matthew

NEW YORK (AFP).- Global buyers have dropped nearly $3 billion on art in New York in two weeks, a record haul rooted in a billionaire thirst for trophies, Chinese purchasing power and growing diversification. Christie's chalked up $1.79 billion in sales, including every single item from the iconic collection of the late David and Peggy Rockefeller which, for the first time, spread their flagship May sales across two weeks. Sotheby's sold $859 million, including $157.2 million for a Modigliani nude -- the most expensive lot of the season, after Christie's last November smashed records by selling a single Leonardo da Vinci for $450.3 million. "It's colossal. It really is huge and especially after the dip of 2016," says Georgina Adam, author of the "Dark Side of the Boom: The Excesses of the Art Market in the 21st Century." "As long as the auction houses have really managed to do their marketing very well and reach a big audience of collectors, the top end of the market is still doing very well," says Rach ... More

The Best Photos of the Day

The Morgan Library & Museum presents the first survey of the drawings of Wayne Thiebaud   Exhibition at Pace Gallery features twelve recent paintings by Julian Schnabel   New film explores the late teenage years of Jean-Michel Basquiat

Candy Ball Machine, 1977, gouache and pastel. Collection of Gretchen and John Berggruen, San Francisco. © Wayne Thiebaud/Licensed by VAGA, New York, NY.

NEW YORK, NY.- Best known for his rich, colorful paintings of cakes, ice cream cones, and candy counters, California artist Wayne Thiebaud (b. 1920) has been an avid and prolific draftsman since he began his career as an illustrator and cartoonist. Featuring subjects that range from deli counters and solitary figures to dramatic views of San Francisco’s plunging streets, Thiebaud’s drawings endow the most common objects and everyday scenes with a sense of poetry and nostalgia. On view at the Morgan Library & Museum, Wayne Thiebaud, Draftsman is the first exhibition to explore the full scope of the artist’s works on paper, including quick sketches, finished pastels, watercolors, and charcoal drawings. The earliest of the almost eighty-five works on view are cartoons from the 1940s, while the most recent feature landscape drawings inspired by the Sacramento River valley. The show will run through September ... More

Julian Schnabel, January, 2017. Inkjet print and oil on polyester, 88" x 68" (223.5 cm x 172.7 cm). Photography by Tom Powel Imaging. © Julian Schnabel / ARS, New York / DACS 2018.

LONDON.- Pace is presenting Julian Schnabel: The re-use of 2017 by 2018. The re-use of Christmas, birthdays. The re-use of a joke. The re-use of air and water. This is the first solo presentation by the artist at Pace in London. The exhibition features twelve recent paintings using imagery and an approach to painting that the artist has refined throughout his career. “It is about the power to take ordinary things, and by arranging them, to produce a transcendence of their ordinariness.” – Julian Schnabel. Schnabel’s inspiration for the series originates from twelve calendar prints published by John & Josiah Boydell and made by Royal Academy artists William Hamilton (1751–1801) and Francesco Bartolozzi (1727–1815), whose names appear at the bottom of each image. Discovered by Schnabel in a second-hand store in New York City, the original engraved images feature agricultural scenes that depict ... More

Theatrical one-sheet for from Boom For Real: The Late Teenage Years of Jean-Michel Nasquiat, a Magnolia Pictures release. Photo courtesy of Magnolia Pictures.

NEW YORK, NY.- Boom For Real: The Late Teenage Years of Jean-Michel Nasquiat follows Basquiat's life pre-fame and how New York City, the times, the people and the movements surrounding him formed the artist he became. Using never-before-seen works, writings and photographs, director Sara Driver, who was part of the New York arts scene herself, worked closely and collaboratively with friends and other artists who emerged from that period: Jim Jarmusch, James Nares, Fab Five Freddy, Glenn O’Brien, Kenny Scharf, Lee Quinones, Patricia Field, Luc Sante and many others. Drawing upon their memories and anecdotes, the film also uses period film footage, music and images to visually re-recreate the era, drawing a portrait of Jean-Michel and Downtown New York City -pre AIDS, President Reagan, the real estate and art booms – before anyone was motivated by money and ambition. The definition of fame, success and power were very different t ... More

Artcurial announces highlights from the sale of the André Lejard collection   Exhibition of new paintings, photographs, and a video work by Marilyn Minter opens at Regen Projects   A Bob Dylan guitar fetches $495,000 at auction

Fernand Léger, Elément mécanique, 1922. Huile sur toile, 65 x 54 cm. Estimate: 2 000 000-3 000 000€ / 2 500 000 – 3 700 000 $ © Artcurial.

PARIS.- On 4th June 2018, during the Impressionist & Modern auction, Artcurial will disperse the André Lejard collection alongside Vincent van Gogh’s « Raccommodeuses de filets dans les dunes » and 5 works by Paul Gauguin. Comprising 31 pieces (paintings, sculptures, books, drawings), this exceptional group of art of is a reflection of the passions of the person who patiently gathered them into one collection: editor cum collector André Lejard. While Fernand Léger is undoubtedly the central figure of the set with 4 paintings and 8 aquarelle drawings, Picasso, Matisse, Braque, Derain, Laurens, Villon, Miró, Ernst, Tanguy also make an appearance. André Lejard is a discreet but essential figure of the French editing world between 1920 and 1950. Chief editor of Art et Métiers Graphiques magazine, one of the most prestigious publications from between the two wars in France, he also was member of the original personalities involved in Édit ... More

Installation view of Marilyn Minter at Regen Projects, Los Angeles. Photo: Brian Forrest, Courtesy Regen Projects, Los Angeles.

LOS ANGELES, CA.- Regen Projects is presenting an exhibition of new paintings, photographs, and a video work by New York-based artist Marilyn Minter. This marks her third solo presentation at the gallery. Over the course of her decades-long career, Marilyn Minter has developed a singular and provocative pictorial language imbued with themes of desire, power, glamour, and beauty. Often times simultaneously seductive and repugnant, her paintings and photographs mine the imagery of Hollywood, fashion, advertising, and pornography while also referencing the history of art. Inspired by feminism and sexual politics, her subversive pictures reframe the conversation about looking and the female figure in visual culture. In this exhibition Minter turns her attention to the art historical trope of the bather. Poised between abstraction and figuration, a series of large-scale paintings are meticulously constructed using many layers ... More

A Bob Dylan/Robbie Robertson 1965 Fender Telecaster guitar is displayed along with other items during a media preview May 14, 2018 in New York. Don EMMERT / AFP.

NEW YORK (AFP).- A guitar that played a key role in Bob Dylan's artistic evolution from folk music to rock fetched a half million at auction on Saturday. The guitar, a 1965 Fender Telecaster that belonged to Robbie Robertson, Dylan's guitarist, was used by Dylan, Eric Clapton and George Harrison, Julien's Auctions said Saturday. It had been expected to fetch between $400,000 and $600,000. The guitar marked the singer's path from folk stylings like "The Times They Are A-Changin'" (1964), to electric rock, like his 1965 hit "Like a Rolling Stone." Other famous guitars went under the hammer on Saturday: George Harrison's first electric guitar, a $40,000 Hofner Club 40, and a Fender Telecaster rosewood guitar made for Elvis Presley in 1968, priced at a cool $115,200. More than 40 years after his death, Elvis items still fetch a handsome price. A heavily decorated Elvis belt, which he ... More

French director Luc Besson accused of rape, denies 'fantasist' accusations   Galerie Jeanne Bucher Jaeger opens a solo exhibition of the Japanese artist Susumu Shingu   New York's Metropolitan Opera sues fired conductor James Levine in abuse case

In this file photo taken on February 17, 2018 French director Luc Besson poses on the red carpet upon arrival for the premiere of the film "Eva" presented in competition during the 68th Berlinale film festival in Berlin. Stefanie LOOS / AFP.

PARIS (AFP).- A young actress has lodged a complaint for rape against French film director Luc Besson, judicial sources said Saturday, the latest in a string of sexual abuse allegations in the wake of the Harvey Weinstein scandal. The filmmaker's lawyer Thierry Marembert said he categorically denied the claims calling them "fantasist accusations", adding that the complainant was someone he knew "towards whom he has never behaved inappropriately". Police in Paris opened an investigation after the actress accused the 59-year-old "The Big Blue", "Nikita" and "Leon" director of raping her, the judicial sources said. A "complaint has been made for acts qualifying as rape by the plaintiff which happened Thursday night into Friday in Paris," they said, adding that police were investigating. News of the allegation emerged shortly before the closing ceremony of the Cannes Film Festival which was ... More

Susumu Shingu, Night Flight, 2012. Edition de 5. Stainless steel, aluminum and polyester cloth, 172 x ř 132 cm. Courtesy Galerie Jeanne Bucher Jaeger, Paris. Photo: Hervé Abbadie.

PARIS.- Galerie Jeanne Bucher Jaeger is hosting a solo exhibition of the Japanese artist Susumu Shingu, entitled Cosmos, in an echo of the important retrospective Spaceship that the Mudam Luxembourg— Musée d’Art Moderne Grand-Duc Jean has dedicated to his work from May 18, 2018 to January 6, 2019. This exhibition has been presented in three Japanese museums, and can now be seen for the first time in Europe. It presents, among other works, Wind Caravan, an ensemble of 21 sculptures animated by the wind, in the Dräi Eechelen Park. Following from his preceding exhibitions at the gallery, Sculptures du respir in 2006, Planet of Wind and Water in 2009, and Au-delŕ du temps in 2012, Cosmos assembles a selection of the artist’s sculptures from 2006 to 2017, as well as recent collages and paintings, and some of his most exceptional sculptural studies. Sculptor of wind, water, and gravity, Susumu Shingu has ... More

In this file photo taken on May 13, 1996, US conductor James Levine is pictured during a rehearsal in Frankfurt, Germany. ARNE DEDERT / DPA / AFP.

NEW YORK (AFP).- New York's Metropolitan Opera has sued its former conductor James Levine, detailing seven alleged incidents of sexual abuse or harassment turned up during an internal investigation. In a complaint filed with the New York Supreme Court, the Met said the alleged cases took place between 1970 and 1999. It said the influential conductor had repeatedly "used his reputation and position of power to prey upon and abuse artists." The prestigious opera demanded at least $5.85 million in damages and interest, saying Levine had caused "significant reputational and economic harm" to the institution. The Met's filing did not name the victims of the alleged abuse. But it chronicled one case of a musician -- only 16 years old when the alleged abuse began in 1986 -- allegedly pressured by Levine to engage in mutual masturbation sessions, and whom he had paid some $50,000 over several years. Levine was said to have also "made sexual remarks and ... More

The State Hermitage Museum opens the first dedicated exhibition of Arte Povera to take place in Russia   Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac opens exhibition of new works by Miquel Barceló   Galerie Templon gives Jean Fabre complete curatorial freedom for exhibition in new space

Mario Merz, Che fare? (What to do?), 1968. © Studio fotografico Gonella.

ST. PETERSBURG.- On 17 May 2018, the State Hermitage Museum opened the exhibition Arte Povera. A Creative Breakthrough. The first dedicated exhibition of Arte Povera to take place in Russia, it brings together more than 50 works by Italian artists of the second half of the 20th century with loans from the Museum of Modern Art of Castello di Rivoli (Rivoli Turin, Italy), the Gallery of Modern Art GAM (Turin, Italy) and various private Italian collections. The exhibition is organized by the State Hermitage and the Museum of Contemporary Art Castello di Rivoli (Rivoli Turin) with the participation of the Gallery of Modern Art GAM (Turin). Arte Povera ("poor art") is an art movement that arose in Italy at the turn of the 1960s and 1970s. A distinctive feature of the movement was the desire of the artists to move away from all-consuming technological progress and towards handicraft creativity. ... More

Miquel Barceló, Urne dégoulinante, 2017. Ceramic, 73 x 41 x 33 cm (28,74 x 16,14 x 12,99 in). Photo: Charles Duprat.

SALZBURG.- Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac is presenting the exhibition On the sea, with new works by Miquel Barceló. As one of the most important representatives of Spanish contemporary art, Barceló is known for his pastose, relief-like mixed media and expressive ceramics, which also show influences from Catalan tradition and from his travels to West Africa. The artist’s native Mallorca, and in particular the view from the terrace of his home in Farrutx, inspired this new series of seascapes, in which the sky dominates the composition. The pastose application of paint renders the moist sea air, giving the pictures an atmospheric quality. Barceló paints water and air in shades of white and blue. Elements merge to create a world marked by transience. The changing forms of the sea and clouds are captured with a soft touch which ... More

La Vierge belge sexy jouant avec le mal, 2018.

PARIS.- For the opening of its new Parisian addition, Galerie Templon offers Carte Blanche to the artist Jan Fabre. True to its commitment to its artists, the gallery is inaugurating a new chapter in its history by giving this great multi-disciplinary creator complete curatorial freedom for the new space. Jan Fabre created a unique body of work exploring his views of the complex and singular Belgian identity. The exhibition brings together a variety of media - drawings, sculptures – conceived especially for Templon’s new location 250 m2 exhibition space. Over the last 30 years, Jan Fabre has become internationally recognized as one of the most innovative visual artists, playwrights and writers of his generation. Galerie Templon has been representing him since 2000, and has contributed to the recognition of his visual arts practice. The gallery is happy to entrust the keys of its new space to this accomplished artist who pushes the ... More

To send light into the darkness of men's hearts, such is the duty of the artist. Schumann

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Highly coveted works by Homer and Gorky steal the show in Rago's $2.7 million fine art auctions
LAMBERTVILLE, NJ.- Rago Arts and Auction Center's May Fine Art Auctions realized $2,700,499 in sales on Saturday, May 5. The highest price achieved by a single lot went to Lot 540, Still Life with Pitcher by American artist Arshile Gorky, which sold for $175,000 against an estimate of $50,000-70,000. The lot was part of the Post War & Contemporary Art sale, which realized $1,761,469 in sales and an impressive showing from works of Pop Art and Abstract Expressionism, as well as the work of female artists. Pop Art highlights from the segment include Lot 687, Andy Warhol’s Bald Eagle from Endangered Species Portfolio, which sold for $81,250; Lot 503, Warhol’s Campbell's Tomato Soup, which sold for $50,000 against a high estimate of $30,000; Lot 500, Roy Lichtenstein’s Moonscape from 11 Pop Artists I, which sold for $20,000; Lot 623, Snow Without ... More

Sotheby's New York Important Watches Auction to be led by rare pair of Singing Bird Boxes
NEW YORK, NY.- Sotheby’s announced the full offerings of their upcoming New York auction of Important Watches, taking place on 24 May 2018. Led by a striking pair of Singing Bird Snuff Boxes from the 19th century, the sale features wonderful vintage and modern offerings for the watch collector at all price points. Following Sunday’s auction of Important Watches in Geneva, the New York exhibition opened to the public on 19 May, alongside 20th Century Design, Master and European Paintings, and American Art. Fashioned circa 1820 for the Chinese market, where luxurious objects were often gifted in pairs, this Impressive and Rare Consecutively Numbered Pair of Four-Color Gold and Pearl Singing Bird Snuff Boxes by Frčres Rochat was separated for decades before being reunited by the present owner (estimate $300/500,000). As such, it appears ... More

Exhibition traces the evolution of our relationship with our teeth and the pursuit of a pain-free mouth
LONDON.- From vampires and tooth fairies to barber-surgeons and professional dentists, Wellcome Collection’s new exhibition is the first to trace the evolution of our relationship with our teeth and the pursuit of a pain-free mouth. ‘Teeth’ features over 150 objects including paintings and caricatures, ancient protective amulets, toothpaste advertisements and a range of chairs, drills and training tools, and examines the tensions surrounding tooth-care, whether for health, comfort or confidence. It draws on the rich collections assembled by Henry Wellcome, alongside loans from key Northern European collections including the substantial holdings of the British Dental Association in London. Exploring the origins of dentistry, and the emergence of the smile, the exhibition showcases Pierre Fauchard’s Le Chirugien-Dentiste (the Surgeon-Dentist), 1728, ... More

Furniture by famed New Hampshire woodworker coming to auction
PHILADELPHIA, PA.- Walker Ten Eyck Weed II was one of New England’s most esteemed craftsmen of the 20th century. Introduced informally to woodworking at a young age, Weed went on to study at Dartmouth College where he was heavily involved with the Outing and Canoe Clubs. He settled in Gilford, New Hampshire, following graduation and service in World War II, and began professional woodworking in 1948. Weed was a lauded member of the League of New Hampshire Craftsmen, serving on the board through the 1950s and as a Trustee of the American Craft Council in 1956-57. In 1962, following a trip to Scandinavia to study furniture design, Weed returned to his alma matter to direct the woodworking program, eventually becoming Director of Craft, overseeing all student workshops until his retirement in 1981. He was named a Fellow of the American ... More

Postmodernism in British architecture explored in new exhibition at Sir John Soane's Museum
LONDON.- Sir John Soane's Museum is presenting the first exhibition devoted to Postmodernist British Architecture. This exhibition looks specifically at its early ‘radical moment’ during the late 1970s and early 1980s and showcases a selection of pivotal works by some of the movement’s most important architects: Terry Farrell, CZWG, Jeremy Dixon, John Outram, and James Stirling. The exhibition explores how Postmodernism emerged as a reaction to the effects of modernism on British towns and cities, and also as a way of moving beyond its intellectual and stylistic confines. In contrast to Modernism’s underlying mission of using architecture to bring about an idealised future, the exhibition seeks to show how Postmodernism in Britain was characterised by an interest in reconnecting architecture to the past, and the various means by which this was achieved: whether ... More

Solo exhibition of paintings by British artist George Blacklock on view at Flowers Gallery
NEW YORK, NY.- Flowers Gallery is presenting a solo exhibition of paintings by British artist George Blacklock. Over several decades, Blacklock’s works have been concerned with a balance of figuration and abstraction, responding to the body in both their subject matter and their methods of construction. His paintings reflect a sensitive response to phenomena in the surrounding world, from atmosphere and color to sound and music. The paintings in the current exhibition represent Blacklock’s pursuit of what he has termed “the beauty of release; the joy of a kind of imagined freedom… of who you are behind closed doors.” Blacklock compares his vigorous and intuitive working process to the acts of dancing or singing, a kinesthetic approach to painting where innate bodily knowledge is glimpsed through the act of making. The curvilinear shapes created by the sweep ... More

Freud Museum London presents the work of two thought-provoking artists: Fay Ballard and Judy Goldhill
LONDON.- Breathe presents two thought-provoking contemporary artists, Fay Ballard and Judy Goldhill, who both explore the central theme of parental loss throughout their practice. Fay was seven when her mother, Mary, died suddenly of pneumonia, fighting for breath in the last moments of her life. She died in Spain in 1964, while the family were together on holiday. Fay never discussed her mother with her father, the prolific writer, J.G Ballard, again. However, 45 years later, the death of Fay’s father in 2009 unearthed unresolved, deep-seated feelings about her mother which she has been exploring in drawings ever since. Judy’s father died of polio when she was one. He spnt the last three months of his life encased in an iron lung. Judy has been considering unresolved questions about her father since returning to Central Saint Martin’s ten years ago, ... More

'Intersections' by Anila Quayyum Agha returns to GRAM with 'The Art of Monir Shahroudy Farmanfarmaian'
GRAND RAPIDS, MICH.- The Grand Rapids Art Museum opened its concurrent solo exhibitions, Anila Quayyum Agha: Intersections and Mirror Variations: The Art of Monir Shahroudy Farmanfarmaian. The exhibitions are on view at the Museum through August 26, 2018. Both artists create work which draws inspiration from Islamic tradition and modern abstraction, creating objects of great beauty and depth. Anila Quayyum Agha is a cross-disciplinary artist whose work explores cultural, social, and gender issues. She uses light and shadow to create work rich with patterns and ornamentation inspired from traditional Islamic architecture and design. In 2014, Intersections won the ArtPrize Public Vote and Juried Grand Prize, the first and only time in the international art competition’s history. Four years later, Intersections is returning to Grand Rapids. ... More

Exhibition at Pentimenti Gallery celebrates Osvaldo Romberg's 80th birthday
PHILADELPHIA, PA.- Pentimenti Gallery is presenting Strictly Color | Osvaldo Romberg 1968 - 2018. This solo exhibition, in honor of Romberg’s 80th birthday, features new work alongside a retrospective of work created throughout his brilliant career. Strictly Color | Osvaldo Romberg 1968 - 2018 runs concurrent with an installation of his work at the Philadelphia Museum of Art from Late May - Early September 2018. The retrospective focuses on work ranging from Romberg’s ‘Color Classification Series’, ‘Paradigm Series’, ‘Building Footprints: Objects’, and ‘Dirty Geometry’. The progression of these works highlights his overarching analytical view and refined deconstruction of art-making while exploring the conventions of looking and seeing. Romberg began using grids of color swatches to analyze the tone and saturation of various colors. These ... More

Three Beasts by Lynn Chadwick join the sculpture park at the University of East Anglia
NORWICH.- As part of the Norfolk & Norwich Festival 2018, the Sainsbury Centre welcomed three monumental ‘Beasts’ by leading British sculptor Lynn Chadwick (1914 – 2003) which have taken up residence in the Sculpture Park until 31 August 2019. This project forms part of the 40th anniversary celebrations for the Sainsbury Centre. Generously lent by the Chadwick Estate and organised in association with Blain|Southern, the Beasts have been situated in the east end garden immediately outside the east façade of the Sainsbury Centre building. The three large scale sculptures, Crouching Beast II, Beast Alerted I and Lion I, conceived in 1990, are animals captured in various states of dynamic action. Their stretching, crouching or resting poses are described through faceted, geometric planes of welded stainless-steel. The Beasts, completed late in Chadwick’s ... More

Auction houses Ferri and Drouot Estimations to offer the works of two celebrated American painters
PARIS.- On the upcoming 6 and 22 June at Drouot, auction houses Ferri and Drouot Estimations will offer the works of two celebrated American painters from the 20th century: Romare Howard Bearden (1911-1988) and Norman Bluhm (1921-1999). On 6 June at Drouot, auction house Ferri invites us to discover the work of Romare Howard Bearden, an African-American painter from the 20th century, especially known for his representation of many aspects of the black culture. Born in South Carolina in 1911, Romare Beaarden grew up in Harlem. After studying sciences, he chose the path of art, and developed an interest for modern art. Painting quickly turned into his main practice and his first solo show took place in 1940. His work stands as a vibrant testimony of the condition of black people in the United States. In 1945, Bearden exhibited a series of cubist- ... More

Claude Debussy's rediscovered score for Hymnis



On a day like today, French sculptor and painter Niki de Saint Phalle died
May 21, 2002. Niki de Saint Phalle, born Catherine-Marie-Agnčs Fal de Saint Phalle (29 October 1930 - 21 May 2002) was a French sculptor, painter, and film maker. Niki de Saint Phalle was born in Neuilly-sur-Seine, Hauts-de-Seine, near Paris, to Count André-Marie Fal de Saint Phalle (1906-1987), a French banker, and his American wife, the former Jeanne Jacqueline Harper (1908-1980). Installation view of the exhibition of works by Niki de Saint Phalle at Vicky David Gallery. Photo: Courtesy Vicky David Gallery.

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