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Urban Culture Auctions to host Sept. 26 sale of works by "Bruce of Los Angeles"

2 Bruce Bellas (1909-1974) photos taken at Muscle Beach in Los Angeles and featuring ‘Mr. Muscle Beach 1957.’ Provenance: Bruce Bellas archive. Estimate: $400-$600.

WEST PALM BEACH, FLA.- On September 26, Urban Culture Auctions (UCA), a division of Palm Beach Modern Auctions, will sell a significant archive of 1950s/’60s “beefcake” photos taken by Bruce Bellas, known professionally as Bruce of Los Angeles. More than 200 lots of vintage prints, negatives, slides, real-photo greeting cards, and posing props will be auctioned. Most of the photos, which played an important supporting role in the foundation of America’s gay movement, were taken in Bellas’ studio, while a smaller number reflect Southern California’s influential fitness movement, which celebrated the male physique. “Around the same time Playboy magazine was launching its controversial first issue with a nude Marilyn Monroe centerfold, Bruce Bellas was creating his own provocative art – photographs of the male anatomy,” said UCA auctioneer and co-owner Rico Baca. “In addition to being an accomplis ... More

The Best Photos of the Day

Huma Bhabha's first exhibition in Rome opens at Gagosian   Performance artist Marina Abramovic returns to native Belgrade for retrospective   Stiftung Saarländischer Kulturbesitz opens an exhibition of works by Bruce Nauman and Auguste Rodin

Huma Bhabha, Untitled, 2019. Ink, pastel and acrylic on paper, 34 1/2 x 23 1/2 inches, 87.6 x 59.7 cm © Huma Bhabha. Photo: Rob McKeever. Courtesy the Artist and Gagosian.

ROME.- Gagosian is presenting The Company, new sculptures and drawings by Huma Bhabha. This is her first exhibition in Rome. In expressive drawings on photographs as well as figurative sculptures carved from cork and Styrofoam, assembled from refuse and clay, or cast in bronze, Bhabha probes the tensions between time, memory, and displacement. References to science-fiction, archeological ruins, Roman antiquities, and postwar abstraction combine as she transforms the human figure into grimacing totems that are both unsettling and darkly humorous. The Company is inspired in part by “The Lottery in Babylon” (1941), a short story by Jorge Luis Borges in which a fictional society is taken over by a pervasive lottery system that doles out both rewards and punishments. The lottery is purportedly run by the Company, a secret, perhaps nonexistent body determining peoples’ fates. Bhabha’s procession of sculptures makes visible th ... More

Performance artist Marina Abramovic addresses a press conference at the Museum of Modern Art in Belgrade on September 21, 2019, where she opened a retrospective exhibition, called 'The Cleaner'. Andrej ISAKOVIC / AFP.

BELGRADE (AFP).- The boundary-pushing performance artist Marina Abramovic returned to Belgrade Saturday to inaugurate the final exhibition of a major touring retrospective, marking her first professional homecoming in nearly 50 years. Dressed in black, the 72-year-old invited reporters to Belgrade's Contemporary Art Museum at dawn (0423GMT) for the "symbolic cleansing of her career". The retrospective, titled "The Cleaner", exhibits more than 100 works from Abramovic's past 50 years of provocative performances, many of which saw the artist put her own body on the line. "You know for me it's very emotional to be here, and it's not easy, there's lots of nostalgia, lots of memories that are forgotten," she said of her return to the Serbian capital, a place she said shaped her outlook as an artist. "I learned three things here: from my grandmother I learned spirituality..from my father I learned bravery, and from my mother ... More

Bruce Nauman, The True Artist Helps the World by Revealing Mystic Truths (Window or Wall Sign), 1967, Neon / neon, 150 x 140 x 5 cm (Ausstellungskopie), Kunstmuseum Basel. Photo: Kunstmuseum Basel © VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2019.

SAARBRÜCKEN.- For the first time on a broad basis, the exhibition of the Modern Gallery, Saarbrucken, is showing the work of Bruce Nauman and Auguste Rodin in parallel. In visual dialogues it confronts 140 selected works by these two exceptional artists: sculptures, works on paper, installations, neons and video works as well as photographs. The exhibition includes numerous major works as well as pieces that have been seen rarely or never before. The loans come from important public and private collections in Germany, France, Switzerland, Belgium, the Netherlands and the USA. The main lender of Auguste Rodin's works is the Musée Rodin, Paris. Auguste Rodin (born 1840 in Paris, died 1917 in Meudon) and Bruce Nauman (born 1941 in Fort Wayne/Indiana, lives and works in Galisteo/New Mexico) are separated by a century. However, they are closely connected by the fact that they both pursued ... More

Reopening of the Semper Building at the Zwinger postponed until February 2020   Hauser & Wirth presents a selection of small-scale sculptures from John Chamberlain's Baby Tycoons series   The iconic inverted Jenny centreline block of four to be offered at Spink New York

The Semper Gallery as seen from the courtyard of the Zwinger. Photo:

DRESDEN.- The reopening of the Semper Building at the Zwinger, scheduled for 7 December 2019, will be postponed by a few weeks. The Semper Building at the Zwinger is home to the world-famous Gemäldegalerie Alte Meister (Old Masters Picture Gallery). Once the restored and newly refurbished building opens, the Skulpturensammlung bis 1800 (Sculpturecollection up to 1800) will also be presented here in dialogue with the paintings. The reopening will now take place in February 2020. The reason for this postponement is that new opportunities have opened up, primarily because the Gemäldegalerie Alte Meister of the Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden has recently succeeded in securing around 600,000 Euros of additional private funding. This makes it possible, in particular, to install state-of-the-art accent lighting throughout the building – from the Antiquities Hall on the ground floor and the skylight-ceilinged halls and side galleries on the ... More

John Chamberlain, HER SUITE HAPPINESS, 2004. Painted and chromium-plated steel, 37.5 x 25.4 x 24.8 cm / 14 3/4 x 10 x 9 3/4 in.

NEW YORK, NY.- Hauser & Wirth is hosting an exhibition of work by John Chamberlain, featuring a selection of small-scale sculptures from the artist’s Baby Tycoons series. Baby Tycoons is one of several series of miniature works that punctuates the grandeur and formalism of Chamberlain’s larger sculptural pursuits. Alongside earlier small-scale series, the Baby Tycoons articulate the instinctually playful spirit with which Chamberlain approached material and process at every scale. Masterfully manipulated from automobile scrapmetals, the Baby Tycoons possess all the complexity and power of their larger counterparts. As Chamberlain himself remarked, ‘If the scale is dealt with then the size has nothing to do with it.’ The Baby Tycoons have not been the subject of a dedicated exhibition in over fifteen years. In 1988, Chamberlain fashioned what would become the first of these works ... More

The iconic Inverted Jenny unique centerline block of four is positions 45-46, 55-56, well centred with disturbed original gum, a spectacular showpiece that is ranked among the top philatelic items in the world. Starting Price: $1,000,000.00 Estimate $2M - $3M.

NEW YORK, NY.- The 1918 Twenty Four Cent Inverted Jenny is one of the most recognised and desired rarities in all of philately. Its legendary status began the moment the stamp was issued in May 1918, when William T Robey purchased the entire error sheet of 100 at the New York Avenue Post Office window in Washington DC on 14th May – just one day after the stamp was issued. Within one week Robey had sold the sheet for $15,000.00 to the well-known Philadelphia stamp dealer Eugene Klein (an impressive return on his initial $24.00 investment). Shortly thereafter Mr Klein sold the sheet to the renowned yet eccentric collector, Col Edward HR Green for $20,000.00. Col Green asked Klein to break up the sheet for him into singles and blocks, then instructed him to sell all but the few key position blocks. What ... More

Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac opens the most comprehensive exhibition to date of early works by Arnulf Rainer   Christie's announces details of its fall sales of decorative arts   Orange County Museum of Art celebrates groundbreaking for new building designed by Thom Mayne

Installation view.

PARIS.- Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac is presenting the most comprehensive exhibition to date of early works by Arnulf Rainer (b. 1929) in France. The Austrian artist is regarded as a pioneer of Art Informel, a movement which brought an intuitive form of lyrical expression in the field of abstraction. The exhibition brings together Arnulf Rainer’s Red and Black Overpaintings [Übermalungen], dating from 1953 to 1969, and a selection of the artist's seminal Proportion Studies [Proportionsstudien], a series of works on paper from the early and mid-1950s. Spanning the three floors of the Marais gallery, the exhibition provides precious insight into the artist's distinctive approach to abstraction, from the mathematical rigour of the Proportion Studies to the emotional subjectivity of his Overpaintings. Arnulf Rainer's early body of work places him in a singular position, at the crossroads of many influences, from Surrealism to Minimalism and Abstra ... More

A monumental and early Danish silver champagne cooler, No 19D, mark of Georg Jensen, Copenhagen, 1915-1919. Estimate: $50,000-80,000. © Christie's Images Ltd 2019.

NEW YORK, NY.- Christie’s Collector week, a three-day series of sales taking place from October 15-17, will feature a diverse array of decorative and fine art. This season’s sales are distinguished by a strong offering of fresh to the market works from several private collections; each notable for their distinctive style and fine connoisseurship. The sales include property from the estates of Lee Bouvier Radziwill, Terry Allen Kramer, Rosa Strygler, and Kaye Miller and property from the collection of Helen Fioratti and encompass more than 840 lots of English and European furniture, ceramics, silver, carpets, paintings and decorative works of art. Christie’s will partner with the venerable design house Le Manach to incorporate fabrics in the auction exhibitions and catalogues. On the evening of October 11th, during the auction ... More

Morphosis Design Director Thom Mayne (left) and OCMA Director & CEO Todd D. Smith (right). Photo courtesy of OCMA.

COSTA MESA, CA.- The Orange County Museum of Art this past week broke ground on the museum’s new building at Segerstrom Center for the Arts in Costa Mesa, CA. Designed by Morphosis, the global architecture and design firm led by Pritzker Prize-winner Thom Mayne, the new 53,000-square-foot facility—defined by an open and engaging urban presence within Orange County’s largest center for arts and culture—will allow the Museum to expand on their legacy of community enrichment and presentation of modern and contemporary art from artists rooted in Southern California and the Pacific Rim. The new permanent home for the Museum, which was previously located in Newport Beach, is projected to open in 2021. The Museum has announced, on the occasion of the groundbreaking ceremony, that it has now raised $47 million toward ... More

Post-war graphic designer Wim Crouwel died at the age of 90   Sotheby's to present 'Mario Buatta: Prince of Interiors', dedicated auction in January 2020   Massive Saber-Tooth Cat Skull offered at Heritage Auctions' Nature & Science Auction

Wim Crouwel, Leger, 1957. Collection Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam.

AMSTERDAM.- Wim Crouwel and the Stedelijk Museum enjoy a long-standing relationship. In 1963, when Edy de Wilde exchanges the directorship of the Van Abbemuseum Museum in Eindhoven for that of the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam, he asks Wim Crouwel to join him as sole designer of the museum’s graphic identity. The two work together until De Wilde’s departure in 1985, throughout which time Crouwel not only creates the Stedelijk’s visual communications, but some 400 posters and over 300 catalogues. Wim Crouwel is trained by the graphic designer Dick Elffers, runs his own design agency between 1954 and 1957, and works with interior designer Kho Liang Ie from 1956 to 1960. The oeuvre that cements his fame, standing and reputation is his work for the Stedelijk Museum, that he considers the most notable client of his career. Although he believes that a graphic designer must defer to the message and not interpret its content, in his work ... More

Mario Buatta’s Living Room, New York ; Credit: Image © Scott Frances OTTO.

NEW YORK, NY.- Sotheby’s announced that they will present furniture, fine art and decorative objects from the personal collection of legendary interior designer Mario Buatta in a dedicated two-day auction that will take place during one of the busiest weeks on the New York art market calendar, alongside with both The Winter Show and the Americana Week sales series in New York in January 2020. Mario Buatta: Prince of Interiors will offer a diverse array of nearly 1,000 works that Mr. Buatta lived with in his Upper East Side apartment in New York City as well as the William Mason House – an historic gothic-style home in Thompson, Connecticut – and feature many pieces that have long been admired in showhouse rooms and shelter magazines over the years. Most influenced by the understated elegance of Colefax and Fowler and the doyenne of exuberant American decor, Sister Parish, Buatta reinvented the English Country House style stateside f ... More

An Extremely Rare Saber-Tooth Cat Skull - The Iconic American Fossil.

DALLAS, TX.- The largest example ever recorded of one of the most instantly recognizable of all fossils could bring as much as $1 million in Heritage Auctions’ Nature & Science Auction Sept. 28 in Dallas, Texas. An Extremely Rare Saber-Tooth Cat Skull – The Iconic American Fossil (estimate: $700,000-1,000,000) is one of fewer than 10 full skulls ever brought to auction. Excavated from the Rancho La Brea Formation, which has produced the most desirable among Saber-Tooth Cat fossils, the offered skull is a magnificent example of the fossil coveted by serious collectors. Fossils from the Rancho La Brea Formation, which has been closed to private collectors for nearly 50 years, are so rare in private collections that they rarely get brought to auction. This specimen is unmatched in its completeness and size, and rates high in both scientific integrity and desirability. Merriam & Stock records the largest Smilodon Fatalis skull ... More

One always has to spoil a picture a little bit, to finish it. Delacroix

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Strong prices in Dix Noonan Webb's inaugural auction of Russian coins
LONDON.- An extremely fine and rare silver medal from the reign of Catherine the Great (1762-96), dating from 1771 sold for £19,840* in Dix Noonan Webb’s inaugural auction of Russian Coins and Historical Medals on Tuesday, September 17, 2019 at their auction rooms in central Mayfair - 16 Bolton St, London, W1J 8BQ. Made by G.C. and J.G. Waechter, on one side of the medal was an effigy of Count Grigory Grigorievich Orlov, who was the Empress’ principal lover and led the coup which overthrew Catherine's husband Peter III and installed Catherine as Empress. The other side showed Orlov on horseback with a view of Moscow in the background. It was estimated at £9,000£12,000 [Lot 558]. This medal was part of a Collection of 82 Russian Historical Medals that had been the Property of a Gentleman, which had been collected in the 1960s and 70s and ... More

University Archives auction will feature items pertaining to Washington, JFK, and Peter I
WESTPORT, CONN.- A letter handwritten and signed by George Washington, a Walt Disney twice-signed stock certificate, JFK’s official schedule from the day of his assassination in 1963, a document signed by Russian czar Peter I, and a large Apollo 11 lunar landing photo signed by Neil Armstrong are just a few highlight lots in University Archives’ October 2nd online auction. The auction will begin at 10:30 am Eastern time. Live bidding has already been posted online and bidding is available via, and The auction is packed with an important selection of autographed documents, manuscripts, books and photos – 240 lots in all. Folks can visit the website and browse at Categories include Americana (including presidents, Declaration and Constitution signers, Rev. War and Civil War), ... More

Bertoia's to auction Tony Annese antique toy, Marklin train & Christmas collection
VINELAND, NJ.- Year round, Bertoia Auctions brings an incredible selection of antique and vintage toys to the collector marketplace, but the pinnacle of their annual roster is the twice-yearly Signature Auction, which places the spotlight on a single prestigious collection worthy of VIP status. The next Signature Auction, slated for Friday, October 11, features “The Gentleman’s Collection,” the lifetime antique toy, Marklin train and Christmas collection of former Antique Toy Collectors of America president, and former chairman of the board of the Golden Glow of Christmas Past, Tony Annese. A commercial real estate developer, Tony Annese started collecting toys in the early 1970s. He made a proactive effort to meet the high-profile collectors of that decade and developed relationships that led to his acquisition of many first-rate toys over the years ... More

Massimo De Carlo presents the group exhibition The Parrinos
MILAN.- Massimo De Carlo inaugurated the new season with the group exhibition The Parrinos, presenting works by Steven Parrino alongside his friends and fellow artists John Armleder, Olivier Mosset and Cady Noland and Günther Förg. Steven Parrino is best known for his signature-misshaped monochromes with slashed canvases. Throughout his career the artist applied to his practice a relentless punk radicalism, revitalising the history of abstraction through a combination of painting, photo collage, drawing, film, video and performance. At the core of Parrino’s work lies the strongest belief that “radicalism comes from content and not necessarily form” and such a belief was born from a deep understanding of the history of the painting and ... More

Rare print by M.C. Escher commands $98,000 as Important Fine Art soars past expectations at Clars
OAKLAND, CA.- Important fine art led the sale on September 15th as collectors and buyers competed strongly for the investment level works offered. Numerous offerings in all categories soared well past expectations making this a very exciting sale. The property to be offered at this sale came from prominent California estates as well as museums, private institutions and special collections. The “star of the show” on September 15th was the highly anticipated rare 13-foot woodblock print by M.C. Escher (Dutch, 1898-1972) titled Metamorphosis II, 1939/1940. Considered Escher’s most ambitious project, this work was offered for $80,000 - $100,000 and sold very well for $98,400. Taking second place, and creating a frenzy of international bidding, was an oil on canvas by Vladimir Becic (Croatian, 1886-1954). Landscape, Bosnia#1, was estimated ... More

Appleton Museum of Art announces new Director Jason Steuber
OCALA, FLA.- The Appleton Museum of Art, College of Central Florida, proudly announced Jason Steuber as the museum’s new director. Steuber has more than 20 years of curatorial and project management experience with American Alliance of Museums-accredited museums. He is an award-winning Asian Art historian and has been an art museum leader and financial decision maker for the past 10 years, serving as the Cofrin Curator of Asian Art Endowed Chair at the Samuel P. Harn Museum at the University of Florida in Gainesville. Previously he served as the Leverhulme Trust Visiting Fellow at Glasgow University in Scotland and Assistant Curator of Chinese Art at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City. He began his work at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art as a curatorial intern and then research assistant. “I am honored to become part of the College ... More

New exhibit explores the relationship between science and art
CAMBRIDGE, MASS.- Looping white lines converge into spirals on a black background, revealing the separation between the patterns like static on a television. The image of the radiation of a fast electron taken at the Radiation Laboratory in Berkeley, CA in 1940 could easily be an experimental charcoal drawing on white paper. Instead, the lines are formed by water droplets created by a single electron traveling through a super-saturated vapor in a device called a cloud chamber, allowing the movement of subatomic particles to become visible to the human eye. Throughout history artists and scientists have worked, often symbiotically, to communicate important scientific concepts to each other, and the public, through visual means. For instance, Edwin Land, the inventor of the Polaroid camera, created a collage of colored paper to study color vision. He ... More

Ricky Williams' 1998 Heisman Trophy anchors Heritage Sports October Memorabilia Catalog Auction
DALLAS, TX.- The world’s largest collectibles auctioneer presents the most coveted hardware in American sports in its latest sports collectibles catalog auction, now open for bidding at Heritage Auctions. The Heisman Trophy awarded to University of Texas Longhorns’ running back Ricky Williams in 1998 is expected to sell for a half-million dollars or more to lead the diverse offerings of the sale. The Walter Camp and Doak Walker awards issued to Williams the same year will likewise tempt gridiron collectors. The auction will close as the League Conference Championships near their conclusion, a perfect time to release to the collecting public the No. 1 set of World Series tickets on the PSA Registry, featuring a single ticket (nearly all unused) for every year from 1909 to 2018. High-grade Championship rings celebrating the World Championship glory of the 1990 ... More

Holabird Western Americana Collections announces huge 3,100+ Americana auction
RENO, NEV.- A four-day Americana auction bursting with more than 3,l00 lots in a wide array of collecting categories – to include petroliana, aviation, World War II, art, railroadiana, Native Americana, stock certificates, mining, minerals and gold – will be held Oct. 4th-7th by Holabird Western Americana Collections, online and live in the gallery at 3555 Airway Drive in Reno. “We’re calling this our fall season second chance auction, because for anyone who missed any of our great 2019 sales, now is their second chance to fill the holes in their collections,” said Fred Holabird of Holabird Western Americana Collections. “Also, we’ve once again devoted a special section to dealers, with specials and great bargains lotted specifically with re-sellers in mind.” Day 1, Friday, October 4th, will contain 772 lots of textiles, Native Americana, art, music, maps, foreign collectibles, sports, military and aviatio ... More

Ponti Art Gallery opens "From Medardo Rosso to Carla Accardi: A gradual disintegration of the form"
ROME.- Ponti Art Gallery is offering important masterpieces coming from several private collections gathered in the usual monthly exhibition aimed to the sale. The selection starts from a wax sculpture, made by Medardo Rosso, a great master of the past, known for his cosmopolitan vocation (he stayed for a long time in Paris, working side by side with Degas and Rodin and exhibited in London, Vienna, and at the Universal Exhibition of 1889) and for his attention to the world of childhood. The work presented by Ponti Art Gallery is part of the corpus of children’s heads that Rosso was able to model during his career. In particular, this wax is dedicated to Tilde Favai, sister of the Venetian painter Gennaro Favai (1879-1958), friend of the sculptor. With Tilde Favai (twice this name is engraved on wax) Rosso tied a correspondence starting in 1913, so it is conceivable ... More

Glasgow International announces first details of 2020 programme
GLASGOW.- The 2020 edition of Glasgow International Festival, one of the UK’s largest and most influential art festivals, will see a host of new commissions and exhibitions showcasing the city as a centre for the production and display of innovative contemporary art. The 2020 programme will comprise a Director’s Programme of larger-scale commissions and exhibitions, curated by the GI Curatorial team of Richard Parry and Poi Marr in collaboration with partners and venues; as well as Across the City, a wider programme of exhibitions and projects, selected from proposals by artists, curators and producers who live and work in Glasgow. For the first time, Glasgow International has received funding from the Scottish Government’s EXPO Fund, which has awarded the festival a total of £100,000, enabling more commissions from artists based in the city and a ... More

Gave Away the Secret (S2, E2) | AT THE MUSEUM



On a day like today, Italian painter Alessandro Allori died
September 22, 1607. Alessandro di Cristofano di Lorenzo del Bronzino Allori (31 May 1535 - 22 September 1607) was an Italian portrait painter of the late Mannerist Florentine school. In this image: Portrait of Grand Duchess Bianca Capello de Medici, by Allori, Dallas Museum of Art.

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