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Painting of naked Zapata stirs uproar in Mexico

View of a painting called 'La Revolucion, 2014' by Fabian Chairez part of the exhibition 'Emiliano Zapata after Zapata', at the Museum of Fine Arts, in Mexico City, on December 10, 2019. CLAUDIO CRUZ / AFP.

MEXICO CITY (AFP).- A controversial painting of Mexican revolutionary leader Emiliano Zapata has pitted his family and supporters against the work's artist and the LGBT community in a contentious dispute that erupted in heated protests Tuesday. The divisive image shows the iconic figure naked and wearing a pink hat and high heels shaped like guns, while perched suggestively on a horse that has an erection. Some hundred protesters stormed the Palacio de Bellas Artes -- Mexico's premier cultural center -- chanting "Burn it! Burn it!" and threatening to set the painting on fire Tuesday. They said the painting, called "La Revolucion," "denigrates" the revolutionary's likeness. The protesters, many of them campesinos, or peasant tenant farmers who are sympathetic to the message of Zapata -- himself a campesino from Morelos state -- demonstrated outside the museum for hours. Some shouted homophobic slurs, which prompted a small group of LGBT community members and supporters to gather ... More

The Best Photos of the Day

Asia Week New York announces 2020 roster   The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts exhibits photographs from the Collection of Carol and David Appel   A Picasso for 100 euros: Draw gives art lovers a rare chance

Royal betel nut cutter, kacip, Java. Iron, gold inlay, 17th–19th century. Ex Tri Heriyanto collection, 5.5 in / 14 cm. Courtesy of Thomas Murray.

NEW YORK.- The Asia Week New York Association announces that 37 international galleries and six auction houses —Bonhams, Christie’s, Doyle, Heritage Auctions, iGavel, and Sotheby’s will participate in the 2020 edition of Asia Week New York, the week-long celebration of Asian art and culture that spans the metropolitan region from March 12 through 19, 2020, with some participants remaining open until March 21st. Says Asia Week New York chairwoman Katherine Martin: “After celebrating our 10-year milestone last year, we are excited to continue our success into the next decade.” According to Ms. Martin, a vital new goal of Asia Week New York is to increase and invigorate educational initiatives by tapping into the vast knowledge of our exhibitors and coordinating additional programing with some of New York City's finest cultural institutions. "It makes perfect sense," she adds, "that with the best-informed minds in Asia ... More

Cindy Sherman (born in 1954), Untitled no. 378, 1976–2000, gelatin silver print, 15/20. Carol and David Appel Collection. Courtesy of the artist and Metro Pictures, New York

MONTREAL.- The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts is presenting About Face, an exhibition of more than sixty photographs by Cindy Sherman, Laurie Simmons and Rachel Harrison, three major American artists whose practice is deeply engaged with the history of the representation of women. Works in the exhibition are drawn from the collection of Carol and David Appel, who are prominent collectors of international contemporary art in Canada. Two representatives from the Pictures Generation, Sherman and Simmons, deconstruct how mass media infiltrates the construction of the female identity. The exhibition features Simmons' major work Walking Camera (Jimmy the Camera) II (1987), which ironizes the relationship between photography and the representation of the female body. Also on view is a rare complete set of Sherman's "Murder Mystery" ... More

Pablo Picasso, Nature Morte, 1921 (detail) © Succession Picasso, Paris, 2019.

PARIS (AFP).- It is the closest that anyone outside the super rich is ever likely to get to owning a painting by Picasso. A canvas by the Spanish master worth more than one million euros ($1.1 million) is to be raffled off for charity. Anyone buying a 100-euro ticket in the international draw has a one-in-200,000 chance of winning a still life of a stylised glass of absinthe and a newspaper Picasso created in 1921. The draw, whose proceeds will go to the charity CARE to combat poverty in Africa, was launched at the Picasso Museum in Paris Tuesday. The last time the organisers held one, six years ago, Picasso's "Man with Opera Hat" was won by a 25-year-old Pittsburgh fire safety official, Jeffrey Gonano, who was looking for something to decorate his home. The five million euros raised went to help preserve ancient city of Tyre in Lebanon. "Art and charity usually come together at gala dinners, where a few [wealthy] people fork out ... More

National Portrait Gallery presents "Portraits of the World: Denmark"   A Chinese Imperial bell to go under the hammer   Royal treasure on display at the Rijksmuseum

Zum Brauhaus, artist: George Biddle. Oil on canvas, 1933. National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution © Estate of George Biddle.

WASHINGTON, DC.- The Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery will present “Portraits of the World: Denmark,” the next installment in the museum’s international series highlighting the global context of American portraiture. The new exhibition will feature “Kunstdommere” (Art Judges), Michael Ancher’s monumental 1906 group portrait of his colleagues in a Danish artists’ colony. On loan from The Danish Museum of National History in Hillerød, Denmark, the painting will be placed in dialogue with works from the Portrait Gallery’s collection that trace the development of American modernism in artists’ communities in New York City during the first half of the 20th century. The works on view will testify to the ways community, friendship and rivalry fueled artistic progress. This exhibition celebrates the latest collaboration between the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery and ... More

Chinese Imperial gilt-bronze bianzhong bell from the Qing dynasty (16441912). The bell is estimated to reach €200,000 to €300,000.

PARIS.- During the traditional Asian arts week at Drouot, auction house Tessier & Sarrou will present its sale on Monday 16 December. It includes a major work of art: a Chinese Imperial gilt-bronze bianzhong bell from the Qing dynasty (16441912). The bell is estimated to reach €200,000 to €300,000. This auction marks the first appearance of this bell on the art market, as is has been kept within the family since Robert de Semallé’s return in France in 1884. Robert de Semallé (1849-1936) was sent to China to pacify the political tensions between France and China that the “Tonkin Affair” generated. He worked at the Beijing embassy from 1880 and 1884, as illustrated by the photographs he brought back – which sold for €640,000 last June also by Tessier & Sarrou. During his stay in China, Semallé wrote Four years in Beijing, in which he writes about his journeys, his missions in the South ... More

Paulus van Vianen Bokaal with Diana and Actaeon, 1610, Prague.

AMSTERDAM.- Paul van Vianen’s greatest masterpiece has gone on display in the Rijksmuseum. This solid gold cup is regarded as the most important of all the treasures ever to belong to the Dutch royal family. It was made in 1610 by the most famous gold- and silversmith in the history of the Netherlands. Since 1881 it has been part of a German private collection. In view of its origin, last year the cup has been offered to the Rijksmuseum. The Wessels family was willing to buy the cup and place it on long-term loan to the Rijksmuseum. The gold cup is on display in the Rijksmuseum’s Gallery of Honour for all to admire and enjoy. Taco Dibbits, director of the Rijksmuseum: Paul van Vianen is to gold- and silversmithing what Rembrandt is to painting. It is wonderful that the Wessels family has made it possible for everyone to see this gold treasure, and this marks the fulfilment of a long-cherished dream of the ... More

Babuino Auction House to offer a collection of important old master paintings and drawings   Clark Art Institute installs Le foglie delle radici (The Leaves of the Roots) by sculptor Giuseppe Penone   Rebecca Salter elected new President of the Royal Academy of Arts

Antiveduto Gramatica (Siena 1571 - Roma 1626), La Visitazione (detail). Oil on canvas, 115 x 149 cm. Estimate: € 12000-18000.

ROME.- The Babuino Auction House will present an event not to be missed by collectors of Ancient Art. The sale taking place December 17th to 20th presents a collection of important old master paintings and drawings, antique furnishings, ancient sculptures and majolica, 19th century paintings and furnishing, crib art, silver, jewels, in its historic Roman location in Via dei Greci 2a . Among the paintings there is the important discovery of the original of the Visitation of Antiveduto Gramatica (€ 12,000-18,000), a work attribution by Prof. Gianni Papi. The painting is followed by The Four Seasons of a 17th century Roman Painter, referring to the painting by Bartolomeo Manfredi (€ 8000-12000), a splendid Ink of Giulio Romano's style, a Mary Magdalene attributed to Sebastiano Mazzoni, two important still lifes of a Flemish Painter from the seventeenth century, and a work by Giuseppe Bonito Family Portrait. These ... More

Giuseppe Penone (Italian, b. 1947). Le foglie delle radici (The Leaves of the Roots), Fourth version, 2011. Bronze, steel, tree, soil. © 2019 Giuseppe Penone / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Clark Art Institute, Amy Coon.

WILLIAMSTOWN, MASS.- The Clark Art Institute announces the first American installation of Le foglie delle radici (The Leaves of the Roots) (2011) by sculptor Giuseppe Penone (Italian, b. 1947, Garessio, Italy). The thirty-foot-tall cast bronze, steel, and soil sculpture of an upturned tree with a live eastern red cedar sapling growing from its inverted roots is a long-term installation on loan from a private collection and is situated on the lawn of the Clark’s 1955 Museum Building. “The Clark is pleased to accept the long-term loan of this important sculpture by leading artist Giuseppe Penone,” said Hardymon Director Olivier Meslay. “The form of a tree—encountered in a very unexpected way—resonates deeply with the Clark’s commitment to stewardship of our grounds and natural setting.” Le foglie delle radici is the ... More

Rebecca Salter studied at Bristol Polytechnic and then at Kyoto City University of the Arts in Japan, where she lived for six years. © Getty Images / Tristan Fewings.

LONDON.- The Royal Academy of Arts announced today that Rebecca Salter has been elected the 27th President of the Royal Academy. She succeeds Christopher Le Brun PPRA who has stepped down after serving eight years in the role. Salter was elected by her fellow Royal Academicians at a General Assembly meeting. Her appointment has received formal approval from Her Majesty The Queen. Salter is the first female President in the Royal Academy’s 251-year history. Rebecca Salter PRA was elected Royal Academician in 2014 in the category of Printmaker. In 2017 she became Keeper of the Royal Academy with the responsibility of guiding the RA Schools. Rebecca Salter, President of the Royal Academy said: “I am so honoured to have been elected President of the Royal Academy. The RA is unique, a place shaped by artists and architects. Its exhibitions are world-class and we teach ... More

KAWS elected to the American Folk Art Museum's Board of Trustees   Howard Cruse, whose cartoons explored gay life, dies at 75   John Michael Kohler Arts Center announces new senior curator

KAWS gained notoriety for his advertising interventions and has since built a successful career with work that consistently shows his formal agility as an artist. © Nils Mueller.

NEW YORK, NY.- The Board of Trustees of the American Folk Art Museum announced the election of four new members: KAWS (the artist Brian Donnelly), Dr. Sabiha Al Khemir, Jane A. Shallat, and Joanne Siegmund. The election took place at the December 10 meeting of the board and was announced by Elizabeth V. Warren, the museum’s board president. All four will serve as elective trustees. “It gives me great pleasure to welcome to our board four notable individuals,” said Warren. “In addition to their wide-ranging and diverse interests, they each cherish the American Folk Art Museum and its mission. I know they will contribute to a lasting and successful future for the museum.” Director Jason T. Busch commented, “As we approach the sixtieth anniversary of AFAM in 2021, I am looking forward to working with our new board members on the many exciting ... More

In an undated photo, Howard Cruse in 2019. Ed Sedarbaum via The New York Times.

by Richard Sandomir

NEW YORK (NYT NEWS SERVICE ).- Howard Cruse, a gay underground cartoonist who mined his life in “Wendel,” a comic strip that ran for several years in The Advocate, and “Stuck Rubber Baby,” a poignant graphic novel set in the South in the 1960s, died on Nov. 26 in Pittsfield, Massachusetts. He was 75. His husband, Ed Sedarbaum, said the cause was lymphoma. While Cruse was not as famous as underground comics stars like R. Crumb and Art Spiegelman, his artistic influence was nonetheless felt strongly, especially among other gay cartoonists. In the early 1980s he was the first editor of Gay Comix, a series of occasional comic books that showcased his work and that of women like Roberta Gregory and Mary Wings. He then developed “Wendel,” an adventurous strip about a man and his lover navigating the early years of the AIDS epidemic. The cartoonist Alison ... More

Johnson is currently the Bruce Kamerling curator at the San Diego History Center.

SHEBOYGAN, WI.- The John Michael Kohler Arts Center in Sheboygan, Wis., has named Kaytie Johnson as senior curator. Johnson will assume her duties at the Arts Center in early February. “Kaytie comes to us with a wealth of experience in curatorial leadership areas that will help propel the Center forward,” said JMKAC Associate Director Amy Horst. “Under her guidance, I am confident that our talented and creative team will continue to develop exhibitions that are relevant to and engage in meaningful dialogue with all our audiences.” Johnson currently serves as the Bruce Kamerling curator at the San Diego History Center. She has over twenty years’ experience curating and a solid record of developing ambitious, reflective and timely exhibitions, publications and public programs. Johnson fills the Arts Center position vacated by Karen Patterson, who left in June to become the curator at The Fabric Workshop in Philadelphia, PA.  ... More

More News
Ruby City announces appointment of Director Elyse A. Gonzales
SAN ANTONIO, TX.- Ruby City is pleased to announce the appointment of its new Director, Elyse A. Gonzales. Gonzales joins the newly-opened contemporary art center from the University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB)'s Art, Design & Architecture Museum, where she served as Curator of Exhibitions, Assistant Director and most recently as Acting Director. “I am honored to be a part of Ruby City, and to help drive forward Linda’s mission of a world-class contemporary art center in her hometown of San Antonio, Texas,” Gonzales says. “This collection—every piece of which represents a part of Linda herself—is unparalleled, and I am eager to work with the staff and trustees to ensure that her knowledge, curiosity, and humor continue to be shared both locally and globally.” During her time at UCSB's Art, Design & Architecture Museum, Gonzales ... More

Heather Gaudio Fine Art opens Jessica Drenk's first solo exhibition at the gallery
NEW CANAAN, CONN.- Heather Gaudio Fine Art announces Jessica Drenk: Second Nature,” the artist’s first solo exhibition at the gallery. For Drenk, the material is the starting point of her artistic inquiry, an exploration that takes her from simple notions and ideas to complex expressions of information, systems and patterns. She reconfigures every-day materials such as books, pencils, plastic bags, even PVC pipe, drawing on their physical properties to re-contextualize them into visually compelling and thought-provoking sculptural outcomes. The exhibition features a new body of work emerging from mass-produced utilitarian and readily discarded objects: plastic bags. Spliced and organized by color, they are transformed into banded formations, layers resembling geological strata. Repurposing this product into a structure resembling its material ... More

Aaron Garber-Maikovska now represented by Blum & Poe
NEW YORK, NY.- Blum & Poe announced the representation of Los Angeles-based artist Aaron Garber-Maikovska. A solo exhibition of the artist’s work will be presented in 2020. The work of Garber-Maikovska encompasses painting, drawing, performance, and video— interconnected modes of communicating a vernacular of somatic expression. Garber-Maikovska describes the site of the body and its role in making art not simply as a tool with which to navigate our world, but “a centralized perceptive sphere of emotional, physical, conceptual, and spiritual inquiry.” Garber-Maikovska’s performances are set in private and public spaces, oftentimes in chain restaurants and mall parking lots. The artist approaches these cultural backdrops of late-capitalism, post-democracy, and neo-liberalism with kinesthetic investigations—gesture, ... More

One of only two known surviving 1945 Silver Threepence coins surfaces
LONDON.- The “rarest British circulating coin in 200 years” has been certified as genuine by Numismatic Guaranty Corporation® (NGC®), the world’s largest third-party certification, grading and encapsulation service for rare and collectible coins. The tiny silver coin — only the second known example — was not discovered in a buried hoard. The 1945 Silver Threepence was found in an ordinary Whitman folder, the type of cardboard booklet that young coin enthusiasts have filled with coin collections since the 1930s. The coin had been removed from the Whitman folder and placed in a similarly humble plastic envelope, or flip, when it was brought to Baldwin’s of St. James’s, managing director Stephen Fenton said. But it caused an immediate sensation even so. “It was a coin I’d looked for for 50 years,” Fenton said. “I regard this as the rarest British circulating coin ... More

Dan Imler joins Heritage Auctions as Vice President of the Sports Division
DALLAS, TX.- Heritage Auctions has announced that Dan Imler is joining its Sports Collectibles division as Vice President of Private Sales and Consignments, based out of California. “Dan is one of the most respected and knowledgeable figures in sports collecting,” said Chris Ivy, Director of Heritage Sports. “He will bring strong leadership to our West Coast operations and will keep regular office hours in both our Los Angeles and San Francisco locations." Prior to his arrival at Heritage Auctions, Imler has spent nearly 30 years in the sports auction business, serving as VP of one of the hobby’s leading auctioneers since 2000. He is well-known and respected by the industry’s top collectors, and has made dozens of media appearances as a hobby expert for outlets including CNN, ESPN, The New York Times, and Forbes magazine. “I am thrilled to join ... More

Phillips' GAME CHANGERS Watch Auction realizes $20.2 million in a white glove sale
NEW YORK, NY.- GAME CHANGERS, the 2019 New York Watch auction hosted by Phillips in Association with Bacs & Russo, realized $20,169,875/ CHF19,847,157 / €18,177,091, selling 100% by lot and 100% by value. This auction marks the first time that a US auction has ever seen five watches sell above $1 million. The sale set several world auction records across brands and models, notably for a Rolex GMT-Master, a Rolex Day-Date, a Patek Philippe Reference 1518 in pink gold, and a second series Patek Philippe Reference 2499 in yellow gold. Remarkable results were also seen across many independent watchmaking brands, including records for Urwerk and F.P.Journe, as well as a record price for a Lange 1 in stainless steel. The sale also matched the world record for a Philippe Dufour Simplicity, set last month in Geneva. Aurel Bacs, Phillips’ ... More

Frank Sinatra's 1945 Golden Globe award for film promoting Jewish tolerance to be auctioned
LOS ANGELES, CA.- A 1945 Golden Globe awarded to Frank Sinatra for the short film “The House I Live In” will be auctioned by Nate D. Sanders Auctions on December 12, 2019. Sinatra was awarded his first Golden Globe for the “Promoting International Understanding” category. In the 1945 film “The House I Live In,” Sinatra convinces a group of young boys to stop bullying a Jewish boy, telling them, "Do you know what this wonderful country is made of? It's made up of 100 different kinds of people, and 100 different ways of talking, and 100 different ways of going to church. But they're all American ways." The Hollywood Foreign Press awarded the “Promoting International Understanding” Golden Globe from 1946-1964. Sinatra was the first recipient of this award. This Golden Globe is the only major award won by Frank Sinatra ever to appear at auction. ... More

Morphy's Antique Coin-Op & Advertising Auction hits $2.6M jackpot
DENVER, PA.- A nickel or quarter dropped into the slot was all it took to try out the irresistible antique coin-op machines entered in Morphy Auctions’ November 20-21 auction, but it took more than just pocket change if a bidder wanted to play for “keeps.” The high-energy, 1,475-lot sale took in a robust $2.6 million, with the top lot – a Caille Brothers 5-cent “Black Cat” musical upright cabinet slot machine – leading prices realized at $96,000. The extremely rare Black Cat boasted all-original condition with correct castings, coin head and spinning wheel. Lavishly embellished with nickel-plating and standing on four sturdy nickel-plated cabriole legs, the coveted machine had been pegged for success and was estimated at $60,000-$90,000. Musical entertainers included a 1905 Multiphone Operating Company 5-cent multiple-cylinder phonograph whose ... More

New Foundation dedicated to the French-Chinese master artist Chu Teh-Chun opens in Geneva
GENEVA.- The family of the revered French-Chinese Master artist, CHU Teh-Chun, has launched a Foundation (The CHU Teh-Chun Fondation) to promote his work across the globe, starting with a major retrospective at the National Museum of China, Beijing in April 2020. CHU Teh-Chun, who died aged 93 in 2014, was celebrated for integrating traditional Chinese painting techniques with Western abstract art. The artist is counted amongst the painters of the New School of Paris and his work is categorised as being part of the Lyrical Abstraction movement broadly, painters who sought to move the spectator emotionally. His work also reveals the influence of Contemporary American abstract artists such as Robert Motherwell, Franz Kline, Mark Tobey and Alexander Calder, in particular his mobile works, and by Rembrandt and Turner. The major retrospective ... More

Hank Aaron and Ted Williams game-worn jerseys sell for $138,000 and $111,000
LOS ANGELES, CA.- A 1965 Hank Aaron Milwaukee Braves game-worn jersey and a game-worn 1950 jersey belonging to Ted Williams sold for $138,000 and $111,000 respectively at Robert Edward Auctions. Hank Aaron Milwaukee Braves jerseys are rare and have always been highly prized by collectors. This Milwaukee Aaron jersey Robert Edward Auctions has ever offered and the auction house can verify having seen only two others at auction in the past 15 years. The white flannel jersey is lettered "Braves" across the chest and features the number "44" on the left breast and reverse. All letters and numerals are appliquéd in red on navy tackle twill. Aaron's name, the year, and the jersey's set number (Aaron H. 65 Set 1") are chain-stitched in black upon a white strip tag in the collar. A "Wilson 40" label is located on the left front tail and a "screaming" ... More

Survival on the Sea: The Story of the 'Bee'

On a day like today, Spanish-Mexican surrealist painter Remedios Varo was born
December 16, 1908. Remedios Varo Uranga (16 December 1908 - 8 October 1963) was a Spanish-Mexican para-surrealist painter and anarchist. Born in Girona, Spain in 1908, she studied at the Real Academia de Bellas Artes de San Fernando, Madrid. She is known as one of the world famous para-surrealist artists of the 20th Century. During the Spanish Civil War she fled to Paris where she was greatly influenced by the surrealist movement. She met her second husband, the French surrealist poet Benjamin Péret, in Barcelona. In this image: Remedios Varo (Spanish/Mexican 1908-1963), Vampiros vegetarianos. Oil on canvas. Painted in 1962. Estimate: $1,500,000 - 2,000,000. Photo: Christie's Images Ltd 2015.

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