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Berlin museum returns, then buys back Nazi-looted Pissarro

The Pissarro painting was looted by the Nazis when they occupied France. CHRISTOF STACHE / AFP PHOTO.

BERLIN.- Berlin's Alte Nationalgalerie museum on Monday handed back and repurchased a painting by French Impressionist Camille Pissarro looted by the Nazis from the collection of Jewish lawyer Armand Dorville. Representatives of the Dorville family signed an agreement for the museum to return and buy back "Une Place a la Roche-Guyon" ("A Square in La Roche Guyon"), part of the Berlin institution's permanent collection. "I am very grateful to Armand Dorville's heirs for making it possible for us to purchase the work for the Alte Nationalgalerie and for coming to Berlin especially for this purpose," said Hermann Parzinger, president of the Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation (SPK), which runs the Berlin museum. He did not reveal how much the museum had paid for the painting but said the family wanted it to remain on public display and the deal had been achieved in a spirit of "good cooperation". Painted in 1867, "A Square in La Roche Guyon" was acquired by Armand Dorville in Paris in 1928. ... More

The Best Photos of the Day

Don Jacot, celebrated Photorealist, dies at 72   Sotheby's sets auction record for a Hebrew manuscript   L.S. Lowry's only painting of an auction room heads to Sotheby's

Don Jacot with his painting “Steam Power: Dearborn Station, Chicago, 1938”, 2011.

NEW YORK, NY.- Donald R. Jacot, the Photorealist artist known for his colorful paintings of vintage toys and precisely depicted vintage urban landscapes, died on August 26th in San Francisco, California. He was 72. His death was announced by his family on September 14, 2021. A major figure in the second generation of Photorealist painters, Don Jacot brought a unique combination of personal vision and painterly precision to his work. As Louis Meisel wrote: “Don Jacot was one of the leading Photorealists of the all-important second generation of Photorealist painters whose work helped to cement the achievement of the artists of this genre. His work displays the highest level of realist and representational painting. He was a prolific and productive artist throughout his life and passed away at his easel doing what he loved to do.” Jacot’s early works of the 1980s featured urban landscapes of his native Chicago ... More

Detail showing the scribe-artist Abraham’s decoration of his name with a crown. Courtesy Sotheby's.

NEW YORK, NY.- Today at Sotheby’s in New York, an illustrated Hebrew prayerbook dating to the late 13th/early 14th century in Southern Germany, sold for $8.3 million – well above the pre-sale estimate of $4/6 million – and established a new auction record for a Hebrew manuscript. The prayerbook was on offer from the collection of the Alliance Israélite Universelle (AIU) to support the institution’s educational mission. The work was acquired by a renowned American collector, who has one of the most significant collections of Medieval Hebrew manuscripts in the world. A scribal masterpiece that attests to the vibrancy of the medieval Jewish community in Europe, The Luzzatto High Holiday Mahzor attracted fierce competition from four bidders – three over the phone and one in the auction room – over a nearly five-minute bidding battle. The prayerbook is the second most valuable object of Judaica ever to sell at auction, com ... More

L.S. Lowry, The Auction, 1958. Est. £1,200,000-1,800,000. Courtesy Sotheby's.

LONDON.- One of Britain’s most beloved artists, L.S. Lowry and his works have been a mainstay at auctions for decades. What is lesser known is that he once turned his hand to painting an auction taking place, resulting in a bustling scene characteristic of the artist. Populated by familiar characters, and even a dog on a lead, The Auction transports the viewer into the centre of the action, with the auctioneer on the rostrum poised to bring the gavel down. Executed on a large-scale in 1958, the work has never been offered at auction, and was acquired by the present owners over two decades ago. It was exhibited at Lowry’s landmark retrospective at the Royal Academy in 1976 and was last shown at AMNUA in Nanjing in China in 2014. The Auction will now star in Sotheby’s Modern British Art auction in London on 23 November with an estimate of £1,200,000 – 1,800,000, ahead of which it will be exhibited to the public from 18  ... More

Madame Tussauds opens museum in Dubai   Hindman Auctions to offer rare Michael Jordan memorabilia in October sale   Striking wartime portrait by David Jagger coming to auction

A waxwork of US actor Will Smith is pictured at the newly opened Madame Tussauds in Dubai, on October 18, 2021. GIUSEPPE CACACE / AFP.

DUBAI.- London's renowned waxwork museum Madame Tussauds opened this week its first outpost in the Arab world in Dubai, which hopes to attract millions of tourists to Expo 2020. The brand, which began life in London where it boasts 250 wax sculptures that draw millions of visitors annually, also has smaller branches in the United States, Europe and Asia. "We have opened our doors on the 14th of October this year very close to Expo 2020," Sanaz Kollsrud, general manager of Dubai's Madame Tussauds, told AFP. "We expect many visitors locally and internationally to come in. "We have chosen the talents that are relevant and popular in the region." The Dubai branch displayed 60 sculptures of "global stars", including football sensation Lionel Messi and pop singer Rihanna. And about 15 were from the region ... More

An Exceptionally Rare December 17, 1996 Chicago Bulls vs. Los Angeles Lakers Full Ticket From The First Game Between Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant (PSA Population of Four). Estimate: $1,000 - $2,000.

CHICAGO, IL.- On October 26, Hindman Auctions will present a Sports Memorabilia sale, which will be highlighted by a noteworthy selection of Michael Jordan memorabilia, among collectibles representing other distinguished athletes. From trading cards to autographs, legendary figures across the world of sports are represented in this auction, including a 1951 Mickey Mantle Bowman rookie card, Babe Ruth signed baseballs and a historic Tiger Woods signed golf flag flown at the first tournament won by Woods in 1996. The standout of this selection will be a 1994 Michael Jordan United Center Bronze maquette titled “The Spirit,” (lot 274) which was designed by Omri Amrany and Julie Rotblatt-Amrany, and will be offered with an estimate of $25,000-35,000. Modeled after ... More

This striking portrait of Olive ‘Thelma’ Exley Bader (1907-1971), that provided the cover image in May 1942, was painted at a point when the country was in the depth of the conflict and her husband was being held as a prisoner of war.

LONDON.- A wartime portrait of Thelma Bader, wife of the legendary pilot Douglas Bader, comes for sale as part of Lyon & Turnbull's Modern Made auction at The Mall Galleries, London on Friday October 29. It was painted by the British artist David Jagger (1891-1958) in 1942 while Wing Commander Bader was a prisoner of war. Jagger was at the height of his fame on the outbreak of the Second World War and the uncertainties of war-time London did little to diminish his output. In addition to a notable portrait of Winston Churchill (1939) he painted a select group of portraits of female sitters to “reflect strength and fortitude during a time of adversity”. These included theatre and film actress, Vivien Leigh; Dorothy Hyson, the Bletchley Park ... More

Phillips presents the largest single-owner collection of fine jewellery in company history this fall   Kunstgewerbemuseum opens "German Design 1949-1989. Two Countries, One History"   Silver Lealana Physical Bitcoin to be offered by Stack's Bowers Galleries in their November 2021 Showcase Auction

A Necklace, Ring and Earrings set with Burmese Sapphires and Diamonds. Image courtesy of Phillips.

HONG KONG.- Phillips Jewels will present a prestigious Middle Eastern collection with an estimate range of HK$96–134 million/ US$12-17 million in Hong Kong this November. Two dedicated auctions will display the largest single-owner jewellery collection ever to be offered at Phillips, featuring more than 170 exquisite pieces of diamonds, gems, jewellery and watches acquired over three decades by an ardent collector. Sensational Jewels from a Prominent Middle Eastern Collection will be presented in a live auction on 26 November in Hong Kong after the Jewels & Jadeite sale (11am HKT on 26 November). The collection features over 130 lots of Burmese and Mozambique rubies, Colombian emeralds, Burmese sapphires, colourless and coloured diamonds, among other fine and signed jewels. Alongside the live auction, an online auction entitled Treasures from Zambia: An Exceptional Emerald Collection will be open for bidding from 23 November – 2 Decem ... More

Schaukelwagen, Hans Brockhage, Erwin Andrä, 1950, Hochschule für Bildende Künste Dresden, Siegfried Lenz. © Vitra Design Museum. Photo: Andreas Sütterlin.

DRESEN.- More than 30 years after the fall of the Wall, the Kunstgewerbemuseum and the Vitra Design Museum are addressing the complex issue of a history of German design that encompasses both East and West. The 390 exhibits extend from iconic furniture and lighting fittings, graphic and interior design to fashion, textiles, jewellery and vehicle design. On display are both legendary items from daily life such as the “Simson S50” (1975) by Karl Clauss Dietel or Dieter Rams’s radio-phonograph (1956) nicknamed “Snow White’s Coffin”, and new finds and rarities such as Luigi Colani’s “Poly-COR” sculptural loop chair (1968) or Renate Müller’s therapy toys. The exhibition focuses on protagonists such as Rudolf Horn, Margarete Jahny or Egon Eiermann, or on influential higher education institutions, the Werkbund design and crafts association, and the Bauhaus ... More

On the reverse is the Bitcoin currency symbol at center surrounded by a legend listing the denomination, composition, and the Hawaiian phrase "IKAIKA I HELU NUI" that translates as "Strength in Numbers."

COSTA MESA, CA.- Stack's Bowers Galleries will present a physical Lealana Bitcoin to the passionate communities of cryptocurrency and numismatic enthusiasts in their November 2021 Showcase Auction, taking place on Nov. 23, 2021 at It will be the very first piece of physical cryptocurrency offered in a major live auction. This physical Lealana Bitcoin represents a historic revolution in commerce, similar to the first gold coinage issued by King Croesus circa 500 BC and the first U.S. coins to be struck by steam press in 1836. It is the physical manifestation of an entirely digital concept, offering a fusion of numismatic utility and financial technology. It features an intrinsic face value, or "peel value," of 0.1 Bitcoin (BTC), equivalent to roughly USD$5,400 at the time of cataloging (October 2021). The value of this piece was buyer-funded and ... More

Cardi Gallery to offer a selection of historical works at FIAC 2021   Turner Auctions + Appraisals offers model trains and more from Almosta Junction in Utah   Aleph Contemporary at The In & Out Club presents 'Henry Ward and Mark Wright: Lost in Abstraction 1, 2, 3'

Mimmo Rotella, Le Volant, 1972 (detail). Artypo-plastique, 118 x 158 cm; 46 1/2 x 62 1/4 in.

PARIS.- For its in-person presentation at FIAC 2021, Cardi Gallery will present Painting: 1958-2020 with a selection of historical works by Agostino Bonalumi, Dadamaino, Piero Manzoni, Mimmo Rotella, and Claudio Verna, displayed in dialogue with recent pieces by Davide Balliano, Domenico Bianchi, Paolo Canevari and Bosco Sodi. For its participation in FIAC Online Viewing Rooms, Cardi Gallery will present a selection of works included in the booth display Painting: 1958-2020. In the OVR the focus is on five pieces that establish a dialogue between the practices of key post-war Italian artists (Piero Manzoni, Dadamaino, Claudio Verna) and contemporary New-York based artists (Bosco Sodi, Davide Balliano). In an era dominated by Abstract Expressionism and Art Informel, through his Achrome series - Achrome, 1958-59 being an ... More

LGB Store Display LGB Hot Air Balloon Store Display. Estimate $500-$750.

SAN FRANCISCO, CA.- On October 30, 2021, at 10:30 am PDT, Turner Auctions + Appraisals will present model trains and more from Almosta Junction, a popular shop in Clearfield, Utah, owned by the late Ben Graham. The online sale in several parts will feature the complete inventory of the shop, now closed. This auction, Part I, includes many high-end, special edition model trains, most of them brand-new and in their original boxes, related accessories, diecast vehicles, and railroad books and manuals. Almost all trains in this sale are G gauge trains made by LGB (Lehmann-Gross-Bahn) or USA Trains. Highlights in the 215-lot sale include an LGB 72700 new old stock in custom wood display cabinet, an LGB hot air balloon store display, a Rio Grande Southern Work Goose No. 6, and several new old stock, limited- ... More

Mark Wright.

LONDON.- On behalf of Aleph Contemporary, Alistair Hicks, author and former curator of Deutsche Bank, curates an exhibition by two leading British artists: ‘Henry Ward and Mark Wright: Lost in Abstraction 1, 2, 3’. Audiences are encouraged to join Hicks’ exploration of the pleasure of disorientation when caught adrift in a seemingly anti-referential abstract space of pure artistic gesture. The exhibition inspires child-like play in resisting to decode the abstracted languages Ward and Wright have respectively built. While Ward’s artistic process is made clear through the sum of its melding parts, Wright’s use of material and media influences the various moods of his pieces; left open for you to dive into. With both artists’ works, the onus is on the viewer to react. In the exhibition foreword, Jonathan Watkins, Ikon Gallery Director sums up the particular pleasure of experiencing the work ... More

More News
German artist Michael Beutler's "Oak Barrel Baroque" installed at Fondazione La Raia
GAVI.- Four years after his project Bales 2014/2017, Michael Beutler returns to Gavi to create Oak Barrel Baroque, a new project on display for Fondazione La Raia–arte cultura territorio located at the Locanda La Raia in the Piedmont region of Italy. Oak Barrel Baroque is available for public viewing as part of the foundation's permanent display collection. This is the eighth site-specific installation following past works by Remo Salvadori and Koo Jeung A, commissioned by Fondazione La Raia, and curated by Ilaria Bonacossa. For almost one decade, Fondazione La Raia has invited artists of different disciplines to take a critical look at the Gavi landscape. The artworks created on the property are permanently placed in La Raia’s vineyards and fields, examining the relationship between the land, nature, and art. The Foundation develops, organizes ... More

Robert Haas, financier and aerial photographer, dies at 74
NEW YORK, NY.- Robert Haas, a financier who in his 50s used his wealth to go in a markedly different direction, becoming a published aerial photographer, and then in his 60s began collecting vintage and custom-made motorcycles and creating a Texas museum to display them, died Sept. 28 in a hospital in Dallas. He was 74. The cause was a respiratory illness, said Stacey Mayfield, his companion and the director of the Haas Moto Museum & Sculpture Gallery in Dallas. Haas, known as Bobby, made his fortune in the 1980s. He and a partner, Thomas Hicks, led a group of investors in the leveraged buyouts of 7-Up and Dr Pepper, then sold 49% of the combined soft drink companies for $600 million to Prudential-Bache Securities in 1988. “I was 41 years old and I’m where I thought I might be when I was 71, times 10,” he said in “Leaving ... More

Opera legend Edita Gruberova dies aged 74
BERLIN.- Edita Gruberova, the legendary Slovak-born coloratura soprano, has died in Zurich at the age of 74, her management said in a statement seen by AFP on Tuesday. The opera star, whose career spanned more than 50 years, died on Monday, Munich-based Hilbert Artists Management said. Born in Bratislava, Gruberova studied in the Slovak capital before making her stage debut as Rosina in Rossini's "The Barber of Seville" in 1968. But her real breakthrough came two years later as the Queen of the Night in Mozart's "The Magic Flute" at the Vienna State Opera, a role she would go on to sing 148 times during her career. "Grubi", as her fans affectionately called her, appeared regularly at all of the world's major opera houses, specialising in the "bel canto" repertoire, particularly the works of Rossini, Donizetti and Bellini. She worked with many of the ... More

M. Night Shyamalan to lead Berlin film fest jury
BERLIN.- US director M. Night Shyamalan will head up the jury at the 72nd Berlin film festival in February, set to be held as an in-person event after this year's hybrid edition due to the pandemic. The Indian-born American filmmaker shot to fame in 1999 with the psychological thriller "The Sixth Sense" starring Bruce Willis which garnered six Oscar nominations. The 51-year-old has since made supernatural-tinged, suspense-driven features such as "The Visit" and last year's "Old" as well as the television series "Wayward Pines". The festival's artistic director Carlo Chatrian said in a statement that he was "pleased and honoured" Shyamalan had accepted the invitation to serve as jury president. "Within the US movie business Shyamalan is a unique figure, a filmmaker that has remained faithful to his vision," he said. "This truthfulness to one's ideal is also ... More

Buoyed by pandemic boost to books, Frankfurt fair returns
FRANKFURT.- The Frankfurt book fair, the world's largest, opens its doors this week to a publishing industry in robust health after the pandemic boosted reading -- but supply chain concerns threaten to dampen the mood. After going almost fully digital in 2020 to curb the coronavirus spread, this year's fair is returning as an in-person event but will still be a more muted version of past editions. "Back to business does not mean back to normal," fair director Juergen Boos said at the opening press ceremony on Tuesday, adding that the event nevertheless offered a chance for the industry to "reconnect". It comes as the book business has been "doing pretty well over the past 18 months", according to Boos, with people in many countries using the slower pace of life during lockdown to read more -- adolescents especially. In the United States, printed book sales rose ... More

Ashes from Amazon transformed into city mural to raise climate awareness
SAO PAULO.- Tired of seeing the lush Amazon destroyed over many years, Brazilian street artist Mundano decided to let nature speak for itself: he painted a giant mural in Sao Paolo using ashes he collected from the scorched rainforest to raise awareness of climate change. The giant 1,000-square meter fresco titled "The Forest Firefighter" -- featuring a heroic figure who is helpless in the face of a raging fire -- will be inaugurated on Tuesday. "The idea came from impotence. We've been seeing for decades how the jungle has been burnt, and in the last few years that has reached record levels," Mundano, who goes by one name and calls himself an 'artivist,' told AFP. Mundano, 36, collected 200 kilograms of ashes from different areas affected by fires to create the mural on a building close to Avenida Paulista, the main avenue running through Brazil's largest ... More

Iconic 'Titanic' costumes set sail at Heritage Auctions in November
DALLAS, TX.- When Titanic hit theaters in December 1997, audiences around the world fell fast and hard for the epic romance between Kate Winslet’s “Rose” and Leonardo DiCaprio’s “Jack.” But just as memorable as the ill-fated love story — and Celine Dion theme song — was the Hollywood blockbuster’s Academy Award-winning costume design. Now, nearly a quarter of a century since the movie’s release, two iconic costumes from the 1912-set film are headed to Heritage Auctions’ Nov. 4-7 Entertainment and Music Memorabilia Signature® Auction. First up: the floor-length pink overcoat that Winslet wore during the climactic scene in which the RMS Titanic — aka “the ship of dreams” — begins to sink. The distinctive coat, which retains delicate watermarks on the interior lining from being submerged during production, is highly visible when “Rose” rushes below deck of the doomed lux ... More

Boisgirard-Antonini auction house to offer a second sale of photographs from the newspaper L'Équipe
PARIS.- On October 29, the Boisgirard-Antonini auction house will offer a second sale of photographs from the newspaper L'Équipe photo collection. With the 2024 Paris Olympic Games exactly 1,000 days ahead, this sale will be devoted to the theme of the Olympic Games, with 200 selected photographs covering a century of sport. The sale will be preceded by two days of public exhibitions on 27 and 28 October, and enthusiasts will be able to bid on 29 October at Hôtel Drouot or online on This second edition, "A century of Olympic Games by the L'Équipe photo collection", will include 190 photos and 10 contact sheets, in single edition signed and stamped by L'Équipe in several printed formats. The photographers of L'Équipe have captured the most significant moments in the history of sport with the swimmer Johnny Weissmuller ... More

Painting by Maqbool Husain knocks down for $43,750 in Bruneau & Co. auction
CRANSTON, RI.- A dynamic oil on canvas Cubist horse painting by the Indian artist Maqbool Fida Husain (1915-2011) sold for $43,750 in Bruneau & Co. Auctioneers’ Estate Fine Art & Antique Auction held Thursday, September 30th. The monotone composition of gray, black and white was the expected top lot of the auction and it did not disappoint, selling within estimate. The painting depicted a rider on the back of a wild horse. Impressive at 46 inches by 24 inches (sight, less frame), the work came with a certificate of authenticity from Husain’s son, Shafat. “It was exciting for us to handle an oil on canvas by the artist and that the painting ended up in a local Rhode Island collection,” said Kevin Bruneau, the president of Bruneau & Co. Auctioneers. The online-only auction – 333 lots in all – was highlighted by a single-owner collection of antiques ... More

The Velvet Underground meets its match in Todd Hayne
NEW YORK, NY.- Todd Haynes’ new documentary, “The Velvet Underground,” summons that band’s essence by being a feast for … the eyes. The screen is almost constantly split into self-contained images that are in conversation with one another, at times creating a dizzying sensory overload. Some of the most striking scenes use images shot by Andy Warhol, who was a crucial presence in the band’s life and art. “We licensed 2 1/2 hours of moving images for a two-hour-long movie,” Haynes said, laughing, “and I think 45 minutes of that is probably Warhol movies alone.” Evoking a sound world by relying heavily on visuals might feel counterintuitive, but Haynes, 60, has never followed the predictable path. His 1991 feature debut, “Poison,” was a linchpin of that era’s New Queer Cinema movement, and since then he has maintained a stubbornly ... More

The Henry Moore Studios & Gardens appoints Sophie Greenstreet as their first Engagement Curator
PERRY GREEN.- Sophie Greenstreet joins Henry Moore Studios & Gardens as their first ever Engagement Curator. Her role will focus on the development and delivery of an inspirational learning and engagement programme that underpins the activities of Henry Moore Studios & Gardens and our touring exhibitions. She will be looking to make connections with schools, students, vulnerable young adults, community groups, artists and creative professionals to engage and encourage interest in the visual arts and the work of Henry Moore. Prior to this, she was Learning & Events Public Programmer at Somerset House Trust where she led on planning, developing and producing engagement and skills activity held in association with onsite exhibitions, resident artists and organisations and strategic and thematic agendas. Sophie has over ten years’ experience ... More

A New Style of Representation

On a day like today, Dutch painter Aelbert Cuyp was born
October 20, 1620. Aelbert Jacobsz Cuyp (October 20, 1620 - November 15, 1691) was one of the leading Dutch landscape painters of the Dutch Golden Age in the 17th century. The most famous of a family of painters, the pupil of his father Jacob Gerritsz. Cuyp (1594–1651/52), he is especially known for his large views of the Dutch countryside in early morning or late afternoon light. In this image: The Negro Page circa 1652, oil on canvas; Royal Collection.

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