The First Art Newspaper on the Net   Established in 1996 Tuesday, September 29, 2020

Early works by Edward Hopper found to be copies of other artists

In a photo provided by Bruce Crane, Louis Shadwick found that Bruce Crane’s “A Winter Sunset,” circa 1880s, in The Art Interchange magazine, was an almost perfect match for Hopper’s later teenage work, right down to the horizontal streak of light. A grad student’s discovery “cuts straight through the widely held perception of Hopper as an American original,” without a debt to others, a Whitney curator said. Bruce Crane via The New York Times.

by Blake Gopnik

NEW YORK (NYT NEWS SERVICE).- Most grad students in art history dream of discovering an unknown work by whatever great artist they are studying. Louis Shadwick has achieved just the opposite: In researching his doctorate on Edward Hopper, for the storied Courtauld Institute in London, Shadwick has discovered that three of the great American’s earliest oil paintings, from the 1890s, can only barely count as his original images. Two are copies of paintings Shadwick found reproduced in a magazine for amateur artists published in the years before Hopper’s paintings. The reproductions even came with detailed instructions for making the copies. Shadwick spells out his discovery in the October issue of The Burlington Magazine, a venerable art historical journal. “It was real detective work,” Shadwick explained, Zooming from his sunny apartment in London. At 30, he’s older than most of his graduate-school peers because of a longish spell fronting an alt-rock trio (White Kite), a past not revealed i ... More

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Ai Weiwei supports Assange with silent protest   Britain to return looted 4,000-year-old plaque to Iraq   Paris finally bows to Coco Chanel's flawed greatness

Chinese dissident artist Ai Weiwei stages a silent protest in support of Julian Assange outside of the Old Bailey court in central London. DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS / AFP.

LONDON (AFP).- Dissident Chinese artist Ai Weiwei held a silent protest on Monday outside a London court to demand the release of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, who faces extradition to the United States. Exiled Ai, who left China for Germany in 2015 after becoming a target of Beijing's wrath, said Assange's possible prosecution in the US was "unbelievable". "Let him to be a free man," Ai said outside the Old Bailey court in the British capital, wearing a pink T-shirt featuring him next to Assange, both holding up a middle finger. "He truly represents the very core value of why we are fighting, the freedom of the press." Assange faces 18 charges in the US relating to the 2010 release by WikiLeaks of 500,000 secret files detailing aspects of military campaigns in Afghanistan and Iraq. Evidence in the trial stage of his long-running battle against extradition entered its fourth week Monday and is due to end within days. But the judge hearing the case has said it will be at least six weeks before s ... More

The British Museum said in July 2019 that it was working to appraise and return various looted ancient artefacts from Iraq and Afghanistan that had been seized in Britain.

LONDON (AFP).- Britain will hand back a 4,000-year-old sculpture to Iraq after an investigation found that it had been looted, the British Museum said on Monday. Museum experts were called by a specialist London police unit after an online sales platform offered the artefact for sale in May last year with only limited details of its provenance. Despite the online listing describing it as "a Western Asiatic Akkadian tablet", the experts determined the limestone wall plaque came from an ancient Sumerian temple dating to around 2,400 BC. The temple had been excavated and looted in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, looted again in the 1990s during the Gulf War and most recently in 2003 during the Iraq War, the museum said, without specifying when the plaque was taken. "This important piece was illegally removed from Iraq and discovered by authorities in the UK," the British Museum said in a statement. "Temple plaques such as this are rare and there are only around 50 examples known ... More

This picture shows a creation by French designer Gabrielle Chanel displayed during the exhibition "Gabrielle Chanel, fashion manifesto" at the Galliera Palais fashion museum in Paris on September 25, 2020. STEPHANE DE SAKUTIN / AFP.

by Fiachra Gibbons

PARIS (AFP).- She was the greatest style icon of 20th century, whose designs still shape what we wear. Yet the Gabrielle "Coco" Chanel who emerges from the first exhibition ever dedicated to her work in Paris will come as a shock to fans of her brand's bling. The creator of the little black dress, tweed suits, two-tone shoes and quilted handbags that are synonymous with French elegance was a very different animal to Karl "the Kaiser" Lagerfeld, who turned her label into a $100 billion business. While the flamboyant German impressario had a magpie eye for street fashion, the Coco Chanel presented at the new show at the city's fashion museum, the Palais Galliera, was a futurist visionary of almost spartan refinement. Many of the dresses she designed and wore a century ago are so startlingly modern they could grace the catwalk now. The cliche is that Chanel ... More

He Art Museum designed by Tadao Ando opens to the public on 1st October   A new Zwirner gallery with an all-Black staff   Jewellery auction to star the largest Burmese 'Royal Blue' Sapphire offered at Sotheby's in the last two decades

Exterior View of He Art Museum © HEM.

SHUNDE.- He Art Museum will open to the public on 1st October 2020, presenting its launch exhibition, From the Mundane World. Designed by Pritzker Prize laureate Tadao Ando, the museum will be home to the family’s art collection. The collection consists of more than 500 works ranging from painting, calligraphy, photography, to sculpture, and mainly falls into three catalogues: International Contemporary Art, Chinese Modern Art and Chinese Contemporary Art. HE Jianfeng, Founder of HEM, said: ‘My vision for HEM is to bring art and culture to the people of my hometown of Shunde, the Pearl River Delta, China, and international visitors who are curious about our heritage and culture. I hope the museum can contribute to cultural initiatives that the country’s Greater Bay Area Development Plan envisions.’ SHAO Shu, Director of HEM said: ‘We are proud to be rooted in our community and stay connected to the Greater Bay Area. Our visi ... More

Ebony L. Haynes, 2020. Photo: Elliott Jerome Brown Jr. Courtesy David Zwirner.

by Robin Pogrebin

NEW YORK (NYT NEWS SERVICE).- Dealer David Zwirner has hired Ebony L. Haynes, a gallerist who is Black, as the director of a new exhibition program and commercial gallery space in Manhattan, for which she plans to employ an all-Black staff. “While you could argue that strides have been made on the artist side, the art world acts almost shamefully on the employment side,” Zwirner said, speaking of equal opportunities for people of color. “Something has to happen.” At a time when the Black Lives Matter movement has raised awareness about the scarcity and struggles of Black-run galleries, the new Zwirner enterprise represents a strong commitment from a mega dealer. Zwirner said he began talking in January with Haynes, a former director at Martos Gallery on the Lower East Side, about becoming a ... More

118.88 Carat Untreated Burmese Sapphire. 6.41 Carat Unheated Burmese Pigeon’s Blood Ruby and Diamond Ring. Courtesy Sotheby's.

HONG KONG.- Two days after the unprecedented single-lot sale of 102.39 carat D Colour Flawless Oval Diamond, offered without reserve, Sotheby’s Hong Kong Magnificent Jewels auction on 7 October will be spearheaded by another rarity in the mythical world of 100-carat stones: a 118.88-carat unheated Burmese ‘Royal Blue’ sapphire – the largest Burmese ‘Royal Blue’ sapphire offered at Sotheby’s in the last two decades (estimate upon request). The sale will celebrate colours, with an impressive selection of rare coloured gemstones and diamonds, including stones set in avant-garde designs by Hong Kong artist-jewellers FORMS and Nicholas Lieou. “We are excited to present another exceptional season of Magnificent Jewels, and offer some of the world’s finest gemstones – a 118.88 carat Burmese sapphire, one of the largest Burmese sapphire ever offered at Sotheby’s, ... More

Head of Auschwitz Memorial seeks easing of Nigerian boy's prison sentence   Exhibition of new paintings by Stanley Whitney on view at Gagosian Rome   Major retrospective features rarely seen works by virtuoso woodcarver Elijah Pierce

Visitors walk below the gate with its inscription "Work sets you free". BARTOSZ SIEDLIK / AFP.

NEW YORK (NYT NEWS SERVICE).- The director of the Auschwitz-Birkenau museum in Poland has asked Nigeria’s president to pardon a teenager who was sentenced to 10 years’ imprisonment with menial labor over a blasphemy conviction. And if that doesn’t happen, he also offered to serve part of the boy’s sentence. “He should not be subjected to the loss of the entirety of his youth, be deprived of opportunities and stigmatized physically, emotionally and educationally for the rest of his life,” the director, Piotr Cywinski, wrote in an open letter regarding Omar Farouq, a 13-year-old boy who was convicted on charges that he had blasphemed Allah in an argument with a friend. Since the boy’s sentence was issued in August by a Shariah court in Kano, Nigeria’s second-largest city, the case has been condemned by human rights groups, including the United Nations, who say ... More

Stanley Whitney.

ROME.- Gagosian is presenting new paintings by Stanley Whitney. Originally scheduled to open in April, but delayed by the pandemic, this is his first exhibition with the gallery and his first major exhibition in Rome, where he lived for five years during the 1990s. It features paintings produced both in New York and in the artist’s studio near Parma, Italy. Whitney’s vibrant abstract paintings unlock the linear structure of the grid, imbuing it with new and unexpected cadences of color, rhythm, and space. Deriving inspiration from sources as diverse as Piet Mondrian, free jazz, and American quilt making, Whitney composes with blocks and bars that articulate a chromatic call-and-response within the bounds of each canvas. Whitney has spent decades experimenting with the seemingly limitless potential of a single compositional method, loosely dividing square canvases into multiple registers. The thinly applied oil ... More

Elijah Pierce, Love (Martin Luther King, Jr.), Date unknown. Paint, glitter, and varnish on wood 19 × 16 in. The Collection of Jill and Sheldon Bonovitz. Promised gift to the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

PHILADELPHIA, PA.- The Barnes Foundation is presenting Elijah Pierce’s America, a landmark exhibition featuring the rich and varied sculpture of woodcarver Elijah Pierce (1892–1984). On view in the Roberts Gallery from September 27, 2020 through January 10, 2021, this is the first major retrospective of Pierce’s work to be presented outside his home city of Columbus, Ohio, for more than 25 years. Born on a farm in Baldwyn, Mississippi, Pierce joined the Great Migration and settled in Columbus, Ohio, in 1924. After years spent working as a barber and preacher, in 1954 he opened his own barbershop, which became a social hub and functioned as his studio. Pierce created a unique body of work over the course of 50 years, producing his virtuoso ... More

Bonhams goes Pop   Works by Pino Pascali and Lucio Fontana lead Christie's Thinking Italian Art and Design sale   British photographer Richard Ansett & Tim Williams Fine Art release two new editions of Grayson Perry portraits

Banksy, (Born 1975), Girl with Balloon, 2004. Estimate: £120,000 - 180,000. Photo: Bonhams.

LONDON.- Although the movement was ignited by pop heavyweights such as Andy Warhol, Robert Indiana and James Rosenquist, Pop Art moved from paintings on canvas to the street, with the emergence of graffiti art in cities around the globe from Los Angeles and New York, to London and Sao Paulo. Artists such as Keith Haring, Jean-Michel Basquiat and Kenny Scharf projected energy, chaos and creativity amid an expanding sub-culture, taking the streets as their canvas, stage, and playground. Their fresh ideas spilled over and merged with contemporary music and fashion, giving birth to various alternative sub-cultures, which all inspired and shaped an era. Blurring the lines between genres, the 1980s saw the introduction of hip-hop and graffiti to American Pop Music. The song Rapture released by Blondie in released 1981, was the first American pop song to incorporate rap music – melding together two previously ... More

Pino Pascali, Contraerea (1965, estimate: £2,500,000-3,500,000). © Christie's Images Ltd 2020.

LONDON.- Christie’s will present Pino Pascali’s Contraerea (1965, estimate: £2,500,000-3,500,000) and Lucio Fontana’s Concetto Spaziale, Forma (1957, estimate: £2,500,000-3,500,000) as leading highlights of Thinking Italian Art and Design. The auction will take place in London on 22 October as part of the ‘20th Century: Paris to London’ sale series. Standing over a metre in height, Concetto Spaziale, Forma is a rare and elegant masterwork rendered in lustrous gold-painted iron that belongs to a series of eight unique stemmed sculptures. Contraerea is a seminal sculpture from Pino Pascali’s iconic series of Armi (Weapons). The work was debuted in his powerful installation of Armi at Turin’s Galleria Enzo Sperone in 1966, and has been widely exhibited since, including in his major posthumous solo show at Rome’s National Gallery of Modern Art in 1969; in his first large-scale retrospectives outside Italy ... More

Richard Ansett inspecting and approving his editioned print of Grayson Perry at Tim Williams Fine Art.

LYNTON.- Tim Williams Fine Art announced their first print release with photographer Richard Ansett. The prints will be available to purchase via or email for any enquiries. Grayson Perry: Big American Road Trip #1 and Grayson Perry: Big American Road Trip #2 are an edition of 8 prints. Printed on archival pigment print, Hahnemühle FineArt Pearl paper 285gsm, measuring 100 x 77.4cm, with accompanying certificate of authenticity, embossed and editioned by the artist. The prints are photographic portriats of the celebrated British artist Grayson Perry as his female alter-ego Claire. The two photographs were created for the Channel 4 documentary series Grayson Perry’s Big American Road Trip which premieres on the 23rd September at 10pm. The series will see Grayson Perry travel across the United States of America on his custom Harley-Davidson motorcycle, ... More

If I want to give my mind diversion, then it is not honour I seek, but freedom. Rembrandt van Rijn

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Chisenhale Gallery opens Thao Nguyen Phan's first solo exhibition in the UK
LONDON.- Chisenhale Gallery presents Becoming Alluvium, the first solo exhibition in a UK institution by Ho Chi Minh City- based artist Thao Nguyen Phan. Working with painting, installation and moving image, Phan’s work explores history and tradition through non-fiction and fictional narratives. Becoming Alluvium continues Phan’s ongoing research about the Mekong River, which runs through Tibet, China, Burma, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam. Composed of two elements – a single channel film work and a series of lacquer and silk paintings – the works simultaneously explore real and imaginary worlds. Phan’s newly commissioned video work Becoming Alluvium is structured around three chapters telling stories of destruction, reincarnation and renewal, centred around the ebb and flow of the Mekong River. Combining self-shot footage, animation ... More

Sterling Associates announces highlights of Estates Auction
NORWOOD, NJ.- Sterling Associates, Bergen County, New Jersey’s foremost estate specialists, will conduct this year’s edition of their popular Fall Collectors Estate Auction on Wednesday, October 7 through LiveAuctioneers. The sale’s featured collection consists of 100+ mantel clocks and 100+ American pocket watches from the estate of Phil Greco Jr., of New York. The array of antique and vintage pocket watches spans a timeline of production from the 19th through 20th centuries and includes many sought-after pieces by Waltham, Illinois and Elgin. All are very reasonably estimated. A Hamilton Railway Special pocket watch has oversize numerals and a second hand, while Elgin’s Father Time model displays an especially attractive Greek key pattern around the bezel. Each is estimated at $100-$200. Greco’s remarkable collection of Ansonia mantel clocks ... More

UK invites the world to collaborate on musical soundscape Expo 2020 Dubai
DUBAI.- Music lovers from around the world, of all ages and from every walk of life, are being invited by the UK to collaborate and contribute to an amazing crowd-sourced piece of music that showcases the sounds of humanity. The soundscape was conceived as part of the design for the UK Pavilion visitor experience by Avantgarde, along with lead designer and artist Es Devlin OBE, who has worked with the likes of Beyonce, U2 and Adele. The project will be led by British audio design studio Polyphonia and the composition will be heard by millions of visitors to the UK Pavilion at the next World Expo in Dubai, a six-month long celebration of humanity’s resilience, creativity, culture and innovation, now opening October 2021. From talented musicians and singers, to people tapping out simple rhythms, humming or clicking fingers, musical contributions recorded ... More

Bonhams announces promotion of Leslie Roskind to Head of Jewellery, Hong Kong
HONG KONG.- Bonhams, the international auction house, has announced the promotion of Leslie Roskind to Head of Jewellery, Hong Kong, effective from 12 October 2020. Based in Hong Kong, Ms. Roskind will lead Bonhams’ team of jewellery specialists in the region, spearheading business getting and selling strategies, as well as working with the wider global jewellery team on all sales and projects. Previously Senior Specialist for the jewellery department at Bonhams New York, Ms. Roskind brings with her more than 25 years of auction, retail and wholesale experience. Prior to joining Bonhams in 2019, Ms. Roskind was Director of Acquisitions for the renowned jeweller Fred Leighton, after her 17-year tenure at Christie’s New York, Los Angeles and Geneva. During her tenure at Christie’s, Ms. Roskind played a key role in curating a series of successful themed ... More

Two possibly unique watches by Patek Philippe and Rolex lead Sotheby's sale
HONG KONG.- Hot on the heels of a record-breaking season which placed Sotheby’s as auction market leader for watches, Sotheby’s commences the second part of 2020 with an exciting live auction in Hong Kong on 9 October. Led by two possibly unique references by Patek Philippe and Rolex, the Important Watches sale will present vintage and modern watches from both heritage brands and independent watchmakers, including Audemars Piguet, Philippe Dufour and F.P. Journe. Sam Hines, Worldwide Head of Watches, comments, “Propelled by various records set in both contemporary and vintage wristwatches, as well as the outstanding performances of the new auction formats, Sotheby’s has been standing strong as the leader of the watches market in 2020. Riding on this momentum, we are excited to kick start the ... More

Turkey seeks new life for submerged tourist town
HASANKEYF (AFP).- Just two roofs poke through the vast expanse of an artificial lake that has swallowed a Turkish town whose caves and pre-Ottoman ruins once drew in global tourists. The dust settling from the hammering of construction sites around the Tigris River lake outlines the makings of a brand new city, with an unfinished bazaar and roads that are all works in progress. But trader Abdurrahman Gundogdu worries whether the new version of Hasankeyf in Turkey's mostly Kurdish southeast will ever recapture the magic it had before the Ilisu Dam erased the original town that stood here for 12,000 years. "I'm making one percent of what I used to earn before in the old town," the 48-year-old complained, outside his empty shop filled with jewellery but no people. "There are local tourists but they have no money to spend." The dam, completed ... More

At last - the online guide art and antiques dealers have been waiting for
LONDON.- Whether you are an art and antiques dealer looking to sell or a buyer wondering where to look for something special, one of the best places to start is with the series of online marketplaces that play host to hundreds, if not thousands, of the best trade professionals and their stock. From Vinterior and Chairish to 1stDibs and Lorfords, these marketplaces are one of the biggest draws across the industry these days, but until now no central guide has catered to them and their customers. Ronati, the e-commerce management specialists serving the art and antiques market, have just put that right with the publication of Selling Online: A Guide to Vintage and Antique Marketplaces. What makes this the most useful of reference tools is that it is pithy, to the point and clearly set out. It has also been put together by industry experts who understand ... More

Live, urgent, but with a slightly recycled feel
NEW YORK (NYT NEWS SERVICE).- In London on Saturday night, the venerable British dance company Rambert performed “Draw From Within,” a new work by the Belgian choreographer Wim Vandekeybus. I watched it from my home in Brooklyn. Such viewing from afar, once rare in concert dance, has become ordinary. But where most such performances these days are free and prerecorded, this one was ticketed and livestreamed. If you missed the show, you couldn’t catch it later, so it had immediacy. But, unlike most livestreams, this was not a static recording or a glitchy presentation over Zoom. Watching it felt more like watching a movie, immersive and absorbing, yet easily the most technically sophisticated live dance production I’ve seen since theaters closed. Filmed entirely within Rambert’s studios, the work seemed to roam, via moving cameras and moving ... More

Art Rotterdam: 22nd edition will be held from 4-7 February 2021
ROTTERDAM.- The twenty-second edition of the Art Rotterdam international art fair will be held from Thursday 4 February to Sunday 7 February 2021. The location is once again the iconic Van Nelle factory in Rotterdam. For four days, this renowned art fair, with its focus on young art, will serve as a meeting place for art lovers and professionals from around the world. True to tradition, the organisation will be creating a challenging fair in February in an inspiring context where visitors can experience, discover and purchase new works of art. During Art Rotterdam, to be held in the UNESCO-listed Van Nelle factory with a floor area of more than 10,000 m2, over 100 galleries will be showcasing the work of both up-and-coming and established artists. Visitors and participants are guaranteed a safe visit in an attractive setting in which government guidelines ... More

Letter written in 1943 by Albert Einstein condemning racism in the U.S. is for sale
NEW YORK, NY.- A letter handwritten in English in 1943 by Albert Einstein – in which he strongly condemns racism and segregation in the United States – is for sale through The Manhattan Rare Book Company at a fixed price of $85,000. The letter is especially relevant now, in today’s racially and politically charged climate, even though it was written nearly 80 years ago. Dated September 22nd, 1943 and handwritten on his embossed Mercer Street, Princeton (N.J.) stationery, the letter is addressed to Walter F. White, the influential African American Civil Rights leader who led the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (the NAACP) from 1929-1955. Einstein praises White for his work battling racism and prejudice. Writing in a neat cursive hand, Einstein begins, “Dear Mr. White, I have been quite impressed by the address ... More

Newlands House opens a major retrospective of Ron Arad's work
PETWORTH.- Newlands House opened ‘Ron Arad 69’ (19th September to 7th January 2021): a survey of significant works by the pioneering artist, architect and industrial designer. Curated by the gallery’s Artistic Director, Simon de Pury, this is the gallery’s debut exhibition devoted to design. ‘Ron Arad 69’ features early works from the 1980s and 1990s alongside pieces from the past two decades, including unseen releases for 2020, presented against the historic backdrop of the gallery’s Georgian townhouse setting. Timed with the artist’s 69th birthday this year, the exhibition features approximately 50 studio pieces, several of which have been exhibited at the Centre Pompidou, Paris; The Museum of Modern Art (MoMa), New York; the Victoria and Albert Museum (V&A), London; and the Royal Academy of Arts, London. New works within the exhibition ... More

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On a day like today, Italian painter Tintoretto was born
September 29, 1518. Tintoretto (September 29, 1518 - May 31, 1594), real name Jacopo Comin, was a Venetian painter and a notable exponent of the Renaissance school. For his phenomenal energy in painting he was termed Il Furioso. His work is characterized by its muscular figures, dramatic gestures and bold use of perspective in the Mannerist style, while maintaining color and light typical of the Venetian School. In this image: A man looks at 'The Coronation of the Virgin, The Paradise' a painting by 16th century Venetian artist Tintoretto, on display at the Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum in Madrid, Wednesday, June 7, 2006.

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