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The Asheville Art Museum showcases Audubon alongside contemporary art

John James Audubon, White Heron, from The Birds of America, 1827-1838, handcolored engraving with aquatint and etching on paper, sheet: 25 x 38 inches, Collection of Bill Steiner.

ASHEVILLE, NC.- A new exhibition highlighting the works of John James Audubon juxtaposed with the work of 21st-century artists who continue his tradition of animal allegories and metaphors opened at the Asheville Art Museum on February 21. The exhibition features more than 40 works and is on display in the Explore Asheville Exhibition Hall through May 4. A Telling Instinct: John James Audubon & Contemporary Art is curated by Associate Curator Cindy Buckner, with the assistance of Marilyn Laufer, director emerita of the Jule Collins Smith Museum of Fine Art on the campus of Auburn University. Buckner believes visitors will be pleasantly surprised by the fantastical nature of many of the contemporary works in the exhibition. "The artists have taken their inspiration from the animal world but allowed their imaginations to really take over with the stories they are trying to tell." The exhibition includes prints by John James Audubon from the priva ... More

The Best Photos of the Day

Black Delftware bowl rediscovered   Leonardo fans pull Louvre all-nighters to catch show's final hours   Exhibition of works by Jean-Michel Basquiat and Georg Baselitz opens at Skarstedt

Aronson Antiquairs will now present this refined piece of ceramics in the upcoming TEFAF Maastricht.

AMSTERDAM.- A fabulously rare Black Delftware bowl belonging to a group of only about 65 pieces globally will be on public view at TEFAF Maastricht for the first time in almost 60 years. Black Delftware is as illusive as the name sounds. You have probably never seen a piece, or maybe just behind a glass panel in one only a few museums around the world. Black Delftware was a reaction by potters in the city of Delft to Oriental lacquerware brought to Europe with East India traders. By covering an object with a black glaze, in stead of a white glaze, and painting over it, the illusion of a lacquered object is produced. Only about 65 pieces belonging to this rare group are known and almost half of those are in the collection of the Brussels Cinquantenaire Museum. These objects, amongst which jugs, plates, tea pots and canisters, Buddha’s and some animal figures were all produced in the first quarter of the 18th century. The first pieces can be dated around 1705 and we don& ... More

People look at the painting 'La Belle Ferronniere' (1490) by Italian Renaissance master Leonardo da Vinci during the night and free opening of the 'Leonardo da Vinci' exhibition at The Louvre Museum on February 21, 2020 in Paris. LUCAS BARIOULET / AFP.

PARIS (AFP).- It's a half hour after midnight, and a huge crowd is massed in front of the illuminated glass pyramid at the Louvre for a rare night-time visit to the museum's most ambitious show in years, a landmark collection of works by the Renaissance master Leonardo da Vinci. "It's a cozy atmosphere, quite unusual. It feels almost private," says Cherifa Tadjouri, admiring "The Battle of Anghiari" with her family at a time when most Paris nightbirds would be lining up for concerts or clubs. Since Friday, the Louvre has opened its door for three nights of free visits to the show-stopping exhibition before it wraps up on Monday. The 30,000 tickets were snapped up in just three hours when they were made available on the museum's website earlier this month, with people assigned time slots to avoid ... More

Georg Baselitz, Drinker, 1981, oil on canvas, 51 x 38.3 inches (129.5 x 97.3 cm). © Georg Baselitz. Courtesy of the artist.

NEW YORK, NY.- This exhibition brings together the eminent works of Jean-Michel Basquiat (b. 1960) and Georg Baselitz (b. 1939) from 1981-1982, emphasising a period which has become pivotal not only for the oeuvre of each artist, but for international contemporary art in general. Indeed, these works of uncommon visceral expression and striking contemporaneity attained concurrent international prominence in the early 1980s, effectively determining the artistic rhetoric of the time. The paintings presented in Baselitz | Basquiat appeared in some of the most important exhibitions of the 1980s. In 1982, both artists featured in the landmark Documenta 7, a large-scale exhibition of contemporary art in Kassel, where Basquiat was the youngest exhibiting artist. Arroz con Pollo (1981) presented in this exhibition was one of his three canvases at ... More

Spring exhibition at Tampa Museum of Art showcases visionary women photographers   Why Rem Koolhaas brought a tractor to the Guggenheim   Per Kirkeby's bronzes, some of them monumental, have now entered the west wing at Louisiana Museum of Modern Art

Berenice Abbott (American, 1898-1991), George Washington Bridge, Riverside Dr. & 179th Street, Manhattan, 1936. Gelatin silver print. 9 3/8 x 7 5/8 inches. Bank of America Collection.

TAMPA, FLA.- The Tampa Museum of Art is presenting Modern Women: Modern Vision | Works from the Bank of America Collection on view through May 24, 2020. Since photography’s inception in the mid-nineteenth century, women have stood among its artistic and technological pioneers. Modern Women: Modern Vision presents more than one hundred photographic images from the Bank of America Collection by leading artists of the twentieth and early twenty-first centuries. Joanna Robotham, Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art, remarked, “This exhibition is important because it highlights the achievements of women photographers and how they have contributed to our understanding of photography as an art form. Moreover, many of the photographers pioneered new directions and new narratives in photography. I am excited for the Tampa Museum of Art to host this exhibition ... More

Installation view. Image: Laurian Ghinitoiu courtesy AMO.

by Michael Kimmelman

THE HAGUE (NYT NEWS SERVICE).- A manifesto and love letter to the city in the 1970s, the book “Delirious New York” helped propel the reputation of a young, restless Dutch journalist-and-screenwriter-turned-architect. Nearly forgotten now, a display of drawings accompanied the book in 1978 — real and also wonderfully imaginary views of the city by the author, Rem Koolhaas, and his colleagues at the Office for Metropolitan Architecture, or OMA, the architecture firm founded a few years earlier by him, Madelon Vriesendorp, Elia and Zoe Zenghelis and Zaha Hadid to develop what they called “a mutant form of urbanism.” “The Sparkling Metropolis,” as the show was called, occupied what then doubled as storage rooms at the top of the spiral of the Guggenheim Museum. “The irony wasn’t lost on me,” Koolhaas remembered the other day, about the fact that Frank Lloyd Wright, the Guggenheim’s architect, ... More

Per Kirkeby, Arm og head no. XIII, 1984. Patinated bronze, 56 x 28 x 16 cm. Louisiana Museum of Modern Art. Photo: Poul Buchard / Brřndum & Co. © Per Kirkeby Estate.

HUMLEBĆK.- Per Kirkeby – Bronze is this spring’s major exhibition at Louisiana Museum of Modern Art. The sculptures, small as well as monumental, take the leading part. And at the same time, in interaction with selected paintings and drawings plus works by among others Rodin and Giacometti, they help tracing the overall development of Kirkeby as an artist. Louisiana’s Director Poul Erik Třjner has organized the exhibition. Per Kirkeby (1938-2018) is richly represented and has exhibited at museums all over the world. He is also one of the major figures in Louisiana’s collection, which includes works by the artist from the very beginning until his final years. The great majority of exhibitions of the works of Per Kirkeby, including Louisiana’s own, have featured a small number of the artist’s bronzes. Heavy as they are, they have functioned as a kind of footnotes to the oeuvre of the painter Per Kirkeby. The exhibit ... More

The Morgan explores Al Taylor's witty and lyrical drawings   In LA, Kobe dominates the paint   Kansas City budget proposes annihilation of artist resources

Al Taylor (1948–1999), No title, ca. 1985. Acrylic paint on printed magazine page. Collection Debbie Taylor. Photography by Glenn Steigelman. © 2019 The Estate of Al Taylor.

NEW YORK, NY.- The Morgan Library & Museum announces a presentation of drawings by painter, sculptor, and draftsman Al Taylor (1948–1999). The Drawings of Al Taylor, on view February 21 through May 24, 2020, explores the artist’s lyrical and witty compositions inspired by banal objects and everyday situations. Driven by curiosity and a sense of humor, Taylor drew maps of pet stains, imagined puddles hanging out to dry, and rendered elegant still lifes of tin cans suspended by wires. During his relatively short career, Taylor produced more than five thousand drawings, in which he combined technical skills, Old Master virtuosity, and graphic systems such as charts and diagrams. The exhibition at the Morgan will shine a new light on Taylor’s practice, highlighting the artist’s distinctive draftsmanship through works spanning the mid-1970s to the late 1990s. The first U.S. museum exhibition devoted to this subject, The Drawings of ... More

A portion of a mural in progress of Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna by artist Prophet Josh. Ryan Young/The New York Times.

by Walter Thompson-Hernández

LOS ANGELES (NYT NEWS SERVICE).- Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna are gone but not forgotten. You can see their images in Long Beach, in Artesia, in downtown Los Angeles and in Venice Beach. A complicated figure during his playing days, Kobe has ignited a surge of emotion in death. The city’s walls have never spoken so loudly. Like so many others, I grew up during one of Los Angeles’ most cherished basketball eras and was first exposed to the game by the dynamism of Magic Johnson and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar in the mid-1980s. These superstars injected the city with hope and promise. During those years, purple and gold was ever-present on freeway ramps, playgrounds and city walls. Years later, a teenage phenom named Kobe Bryant came on the scene, an enigmatic talent who would become a part of the city’s life for the next 20 years. Many of the murals ... More

Kansas City artist/muralist Sike Style. Image courtesy:

by Blair Schulman

KANSAS CITY, MO.- Last week, Kansas City, Missouri Mayor Quinton Lucas and Acting City Manager Earnest Rouse announced the annual budget for FY 2020-2021. Among the budget, recommendations are the elimination of the Office of Culture and Creative Services (OCCS) and a $175,000 reduction of the Film Commission. These are two areas particular to Kansas City’s arts community. If there was ever a time for the city’s artistic community to come together and have their voices heard, it is now, before the City Council adopts the resolution on March 26, 2020. The dates for three public hearings can be found here. Megan Crigger of the Office of Culture and Creative Services tells Informality via email, “there will be three public budget hearings and online access for residents to provide comments during the budget process through the Balancing Act tool.” Chris Hernandez, City Communications Director, tells Informality, also by email, “delivering the proposed budget ... More

Exhibition of historic works by Sylvie Fleury opens at Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac   First major exhibition in the US to explore the relationship between humans and intelligent machines opens   UK pianist Alexis Ffrench bids to change image of classical music

Installation view.

PARIS.- Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac is presenting a new exhibition of historic works by Sylvie Fleury, celebrating more than twenty years of collaboration with the Swiss artist. The title of the exhibition, She-Devils on Wheels is a direct reference to the automobile club founded by Fleury in the mid-1990s. Inspired by the eponymous 1968 film, the ‘club’ boasts an exclusively female membership centred around a shared appreciation for American customised vehicles. The starting point for a whole series of works, this project first inspired Fleury’s emblematic installation 'She-Devils on Wheels Headquarters' (1997), which functioned at the same time as a garage, the headquarters of a ‘fan club’, and a shopfront selling luxury automobile parts – today in the collection of the Migros Museum, Zurich. The spirit of Fleury’s automobile inspired aesthetic is permeated throughout this exhibition. Painted ... More

Installation view. Image provided courtesy of the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.

SAN FRANCISCO, CA.- As technological innovation continues to shape our identities and societies, the question of what it means to be, or remain human has become the subject of fervent debate. Taking advantage of the de Young museum’s proximity to Silicon Valley, Uncanny Valley: Being Human in the Age of AI arrives as the first major exhibition in the US to explore the relationship between humans and intelligent machines through an artistic lens. Organized by the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, with San Francisco as its sole venue, Uncanny Valley: Being Human in the Age of AI is on view from February 22 to October 25, 2020. “Technology is changing our world, with artificial intelligence both a new frontier of possibility but also a development fraught with anxiety,” says Thomas P. Campbell, Director and CEO of the Fine ... More

British pianist and composer Alexis Ffrench poses for a photograph after giving an interview at Steinway & Sons in London on February 19, 2020. Isabel INFANTES / AFP.

by Joe Jackson

LONDON (AFP).- British composer and pianist Alexis Ffrench, a rising black star in the overwhelmingly white world of classical music, is on a mission "to change the narrative" that the genre is stuffy and outdated. The 48-year-old, who is set to release his latest album next month, is trying to counter what he sees as a false perception by using his fresh take on the music and growing status to reach new audiences. Ffrench's 2018 hit record "Evolution" propelled him to wider recognition after topping Britain's classical music charts for three weeks and spending around three months in the top 10. He now boasts nearly two million regular listeners on Spotify ... More

More News
At the Philharmonic, new music for a changing world
NEW YORK (NYT NEWS SERVICE).- Sometimes, depending on current events, a new piece can take on unexpected resonance. Before the New York Philharmonic gave the premiere of Ellen Reid’s “When the World as You’ve Known It Doesn’t Exist” on Thursday, she asked the audience whether anyone, like her, “has felt that way recently.” Her question drew some laughter. She explained that the long title of this 11-minute orchestra work is meant to convey the experience of a questioning journey through a realm where once-familiar surroundings suddenly seem different, both scary and wondrous. Conducted by Jaap van Zweden at David Geffen Hall, “When the World” was the latest offering in the Philharmonic’s Project 19 initiative to commission 19 female composers to celebrate the centennial of the 19th Amendment, which granted women ... More

Exhibition examines Life Magazine's innovative role in shaping 20th-century photography
PRINCETON, NJ.- From its groundbreaking launch issue in 1936 through the conclusion of its weekly run in 1972, Life magazine profoundly shaped how its readers viewed themselves – and the world. Life also had a transformative impact on the development of modern photography and on the artists and photojournalists who have employed the medium to tell their (and our) stories ever since. Drawing on unprecedented access to Life magazine’s picture and paper archives, Life Magazine and the Power of Photography features more than 150 objects, including an array of archival materials such as caption files, contact sheets and shooting scripts to provide new insights on the collaborative processes behind the magazine’s now-iconic images and photo essays. Unlike previous projects that have celebrated Life’s imagery and photographers, ... More

Exhibition examines how A.R. Penck explored the medium of painting throughout his life
THE HAGUE.- Along with fellow German artists Georg Baselitz, Anselm Kiefer and Markus Lüpertz, A.R. Penck (pseudonym of Ralf Winkler, 1939 - 2017) helped paved the way for a new attitude in art after the Second World War. While many young German artists were opting for an abstract idiom, Penck and the others preferred to depict the visible reality of daily life in work that continued a long European figurative tradition. The retrospective A.R. Penck - How It Works at Kunstmuseum Den Haag shows how as an artist Penck continually sought – and found – freedom. The exhibition examines how Penck explored the medium of painting throughout his life. He was driven not by any system or rational narrative, but by apparent chaos and emotion. In every drawing and every painting he set out to create a purely visual space where the imagination could ... More

Lynn Cohen, Magda on 'Sex and the City,' is dead at 86
NEW YORK (NYT NEWS SERVICE).- Lynn Cohen, a veteran actress best known for her role as Magda on the hit HBO series “Sex and the City,” died Feb. 14 at her home in New York. She was 86. Her death was confirmed by her son, Laurence Frazen. Cohen was seen in numerous movies and television shows, and in both Broadway and off-Broadway stage productions. But she didn’t achieve her greatest fame until late in life, through her role as Magda, the stern Eastern European housekeeper employed by Miranda (Cynthia Nixon) on “Sex and the City.” “I auditioned and they called me right away to do the episode, but my mother was turning 90 years old in Texas,” Cohen said in a 2018 interview with Cosmopolitan. “I said, ‘I would love to do this but I’m sorry, I have to be with my mother and she’s turning 90 and she’s sexier than anybody on the show. ... More

A Kobe Bryant signed and inscribed middle school yearbook from 1992 offered at auction
SCOTTSDALE, ARIZ.- A Kobe Bryant signed and inscribed 1992 middle school yearbook with a reference to the Los Angeles Lakers, and a love poem handwritten by Michael Jordan when he was in middle or high school, signed “Michael Jeffrey Jordan”, are expected top lots in Iconic Auctions’ Internet-only Autographs & Memorabilia auction, online now and ending Feb. 29th. Interested parties can view the entire auction catalog and bid now, at Most of the items have been authenticated by Beckett, REAL, James Spence and other reputable authenticating services. Others still are accompanied by letters or certificates of authenticity. Over 700 lots are up for bid, in a range of collecting categories, not just sports. These include politics and history, music and entertainment and more, with rare, collectible items signed by such luminaries ... More

The Photographers' Gallery opens the first major UK presentation of Czech photographer, Jan Svoboda
LONDON.- Against the Light marks the first major UK presentation of Czech photographer, Jan Svoboda (1934–1990) since his first solo exhibition at The Photographers’ Gallery in 1982. His groundbreaking experiments with form rank him as one of the world’s pioneers of photographic appropriation and forerunners of conceptual photography. Svoboda’s work sought to redefine the language of photography in relation to painting and sculpture, bridging the traditions of Symbolism and Romanticism with the conceptual and self-reflexive tendencies of late Modernism. After training to be a stage designer as a young man, Jan Svoboda began experimenting with photography in the late 1950s, initially using it to illustrate his own poetry before focusing on it as a primary concern. Strongly inspired by fellow Czech photographer, Josef Sudek, ... More

Vienna's Secession opens an exhibition of new works by Michael E. Smith
VIENNA.- Michael E. Smith makes sculptures, installations, object collages, and videos; he sometimes also creates interactive sound installations, conceiving of the gallery space he is working in as an active partner in the dialogical process of producing an exhibition. His installations open up a space of experience that addresses itself to much more than just our sense of vision. Integrating immaterial components such as light, sound, and habitual procedures, he seeks to sharpen all our perceptual faculties. The development of new pieces and exhibitions typically starts in the studio, where the artist begins by producing “material sketches”: loose arrangements in which he tests things to explore their potential as vehicles of meaning. He does not finalize his works until he installs them in the exhibition setting, and many take concrete form ... More

Galerie Ron Mandos opens solo exhibitions of works by Renie Spoelstra and Pavel Grosu
AMSTERDAM.- Galerie Ron Mandos is presenting a new solo exhibition by Dutch artist Renie Spoelstra (1974). Her new charcoal drawings of volcanic landscapes create a disquieting presence. The images of beaches, forests, and glaciers are sometimes barely discernible. As they hover on the verge of complete darkness, Spoelstra gives them a highly charged, cinematic quality and a sense of intensified feeling. Nordic Noir refers to the genre of crime fiction in Scandinavian books and films. Renie Spoelstra’s drawing process always begins with a journey. For close to a decade, she has travelled to coasts, lakes and beaches throughout North America and Europe. Recently she visited the volcanic islands of La Palma and Iceland, looking for landscapes that evoke overwhelming existential feelings. Once she has found these locations, she films ... More

Pérez Art Museum Miami announces Daniel Lind-Ramos as recipient of the 2020 Pérez Prize
MIAMI, FLA.- Pérez Art Museum Miami announced artist Daniel Lind-Ramos as the recipient of the second annual Pérez Prize, in honor of his artistic achievements that address unique Afro-Caribbean and Afro-Latin American identities. Lind-Ramos was chosen by a jury consisting of Kate Fowle, Director, PS1 MOMA in New York, and Jose Roca, Artistic Director of FLORA ars + natura in Bogota, alongside the PAMM curators, Jen Inacio, René Morales, and María Elena Ortiz and Patricia García-Vélez Hanna from El Espacio 23. The unrestricted $50,000 prize awards recent achievement in artistic innovation. “The vital experience that inspires my sculptural assemblages derives from our Afro-Puerto Rican communities and from the African diaspora as a whole. The goal of these works is to honor our ancestral communities with narratives, historical references, ... More

The New Orleans Museum of Art opens the first major museum presentation of the work of artist Alia Ali
NEW ORLEANS, LA.- The New Orleans Museum of Art presents Alia Ali: FLUX, the first major museum presentation of the work of Yemeni-Bosnian artist Alia Ali. On view February 21 through August 2, 2020, FLUX considers how politics, economics and histories collide in fabric patterns and techniques. Focusing on wax print fabric—a form with roots in Indian, Japanese, Chinese, Javanese, Dutch and African traditions—FLUX captures the way textiles move and migrate across different cultures. “Alia Ali’s work shows how fabric both unites and divides us, drawing attention to the way textiles reflect politics and history,” said Susan Taylor, Montine McDaniel Director of NOMA. “We are delighted to present this series in NOMA’s Great Hall, emphasizing the coming together of the many different cultures represented in NOMA’s collection.” FLUX includes ... More

Carnegie Museum of Art announces a season of socially responsive exhibitions
PITTSBURGH, PA.- In 2020 Carnegie Museum of Art welcomes a dynamic range of exhibitions that explore the many ways artists respond to their social, cultural, and ecological contexts. This ambitious season presents visitors with opportunities to consider the ongoing and sometimes ambiguous role of the artist in some of the most crucial conversations of our time. "Artists have always been vital contributors to debates in our public sphere," says Eric Crosby, The Henry J. Heinz II Acting Director and Richard Armstrong Senior Curator of Modern & Contemporary Art. "Whether channeling political attitudes of the moment or creating space for conversation, artists contribute essential nuance and complexity to the issues that shape our present moment. How cultural institutions will embrace them and foster their work is a challenge for our century. ... More

£1.2 million Irish & international art to be sold on 9 March
DUBLIN.- When the hammer fell at €1.4 millon for Yeats’ painting Reverie (Ernie O’Malley Collection, 25 November 2019) it broke the world record for the artist. Several other records were broken last year for sales of Irish art with Whyte’s. This inaugural sale of the new decade presents collectors with a new opportunity to acquire master works by Ireland’s most celebrated artists. On Monday 9 March 2020 two hundred lots of Irish & International art will be offered for auction at the RDS Dublin. Viewing takes place at the RDS, Saturday to Monday 7-9 March from 10am to 6pm daily. The top lot by value is a striking oil titled Rusty Gates, 1948 by Jack B. Yeats (lot 25, estimate €100,000-€150,000). Typical of his later work, in both execution and palette, it depicts two elderly gents walking along a high stone wall and standing before a gateway. The figures are expertly ... More

How the Rolex GMT-Master Became the Ultimate Traveller’s Watch

On a day like today, French painter and theorist Charles Le Brun was born
February 24, 1619. Charles Le Brun (24 February 1619 - 22 February 1690) was a French painter, art theorist, interior decorator and a director of several art schools of his time. As court painter to Louis XIV, who declared him "the greatest French artist of all time", he was a dominant figure in 17th-century French art and much influenced by Nicolas Poussin. In this image: A Christie's employee looks at an oil painting by 17th century artist Charles Le Brun.

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