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Almost safe, she returned to Munich and lost her painting and her life

An undated photo provided via Sotheby’s shows “Portrait of a Young Man with a Quill and Sheet of Paper,” which Sotheby’s has attributed to the Renaissance master Agnolo Bronzino. The portrait that Ilse Hesselberger once owned is coming up for sale, a reminder of the brutality, and twists of fate, that Jews confronted in the Nazi era. (via Sotheby’s via The New York Times)

by Colin Moynihan

NEW YORK, NY.- Late in the summer of 1938, as the Nazis escalated their persecution of German Jews, Ilse Hesselberger and her daughter, Trudy, traveled from Munich to Milan to visit relatives. From there the daughter went on to the United States, and safety. The mother, who was a Protestant by faith but Jewish by ethnicity, made her way back to Germany, where she had been known for years as a socialite who gave lavish parties. But upon her return, Hesselberger found little to celebrate in Munich, a city that played a key role in Adolf Hitler’s rise to power. Identified as a Jew under the Nazi race laws, she soon was forced to sell her country estate. She also lost an art collection that included a painting, “Portrait of a Young Man with a Quill and Sheet of Paper,” that she had bought in 1927 and is now viewed as a master work. Nazi officials then pressured her to help pay for construction of a camp that would later be used to send Jews to concentration and death camps. Historians said ... More

The Best Photos of the Day

Lucian Freud, stripped of fame and scandal   'All the Beauty and the Bloodshed' review: Nan Goldin's art and activism   Exquisite dog paintings from Frances G. Scaife Collection to be presented at Hindman

Lucian Freud, Girl with a Kitten, 1947. Oil on canvas, 41 x 30.7 cm. Tate: Bequeathed by Simon Sainsbury 2006, accessioned 2008 © The Lucian Freud Archive. All Rights Reserved 2022 / photo Tate.

by Farah Nayeri

LONDON.- When the National Gallery staged a show of Paul Gauguin portraits in 2019, it took pains to highlight aspects of the artist’s personal life: The writing on the entrance wall stated that he had “repeatedly entered into sexual relations with young girls, ‘marrying’ two of them and fathering children.” These aspects had barely been mentioned in previous Gauguin shows, and the museum was making amends. The National Gallery last month opened an exhibition of work by British artist Lucian Freud to mark the centenary of his birth. And it has chosen to take the opposite course. Rather than delve into the biography of Freud — who had countless lovers and at least 14 children, some of whom posed naked for paintings that are in the show — the museum avoids focusing on his life ... More

A new documentary focuses on the photographer’s struggle with OxyContin and her protest against the art establishment that took money from its makers.

NEW YORK, NY.- Among the thousands of items in the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s collection is the 1980 Nan Goldin photograph titled “Heart-Shaped Bruise, NYC.” In it, a woman lies splayed across a messy bed wearing pulled-down stockings and a dress that’s been hitched up just below her rear, exposing some bared leg imprinted with a bruise shaped like a heart. The woman’s head is outside the frame, so it’s easy to focus on this bit of skin, to let your imagination run wild, fired up by the image’s unsettling power, its allure and its menace. That unease is emblematic of Goldin’s photography, whose images of bruised bodies and bared souls include a self-portrait that she made in 1984 after being beaten by a lover. The image, “Nan One Month After Being Battered,” is in the collection of the Tate Galleries in London. In 2019, the Tate evaded unwanted attention from Goldin, who had begun staging ... More

Arthur Wardle (British, 1864–1949), Look Out!, 1885. Oil on canvas. Signed Arthur Wardle (lower right); signed, titled, and dated (verso), 30 x 20 inches. Property from the Collection of Frances G. Scaife. Estimate: $10,000 - $15,000.

CHICAGO, IL.- Hindman will present property from the collection of Frances G. Scaife as a highlight of its December 7th American & European Art auction. Mrs. Scaife’s collection of 19th century dog paintings is one of the most significant private collections of these paintings held in the United States. A lover of all animals, Mrs. Scaife has been a collector of English dog paintings for many years. Known in New York and Palm Beach for her keen eye and sense of style, this collection is a result of Mrs. Scaife’s strong curatorial vision. The 14 paintings from the Scaife collection offer a comprehensive survey of the types of dog painting that developed over the course of the nineteenth century, including portraiture, scenes of the hunt, and images imbued with sentimentality. Highlighting the group will be John Sargent Noble’s 1891 Off Duty ... More

Palmer Museum of Art prepares for transition to new museum in 2023   Museum of Fine Arts, Houston announces partnership with the Sarofim Foundation   The Brooklyn Museum expands its collections with more than 200 acquisitions

Alfred Maurer (American, 1868–1932), "Heads, Two Girls," c. 1925, oil on board, 21-1/2 x 18 inches. Bequest of James R. and Barbara R. Palmer, 2019.90.

UNIVERSITY PARK, PA.- In early 2023, the Palmer Museum of Art at Penn State will begin a phased transition as it prepares to move from its existing building into its new facility currently under construction at the Arboretum. The changeover will start in January with the closing of the museum’s second floor and a major reinstallation of the first-floor galleries before the final closure of the current building on May 14, 2023. The new museum will open to the public in spring 2024. “We are at a transformative point in the history of the Palmer Museum of Art, as we look toward a bright future in our new state-of-the-art building and hope everyone will take advantage of this final opportunity to visit us in our signature Charles Moore-designed building on Curtin Road,” said Erin Coe, director of the Palmer Museum of Art.  “We are at a transformative point in the history of the Palmer Museum of Art, as we look toward a bright future ... More

Ellsworth Kelly, Red Curve, ca. 1980. oil on shaped canvas, The Fayez S. Sarofim Collection.

HOUSTON, TX.- One hundred twenty-five masterworks from the distinguished collection of the late Houston philanthropist Fayez S. Sarofim will be placed on extended loan to the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, beginning in early 2023, in a collaboration between the museum and the Sarofim Foundation. Fayez S. Sarofim, who died in May 2022, quietly assembled over nearly 60 years one of the most significant collections of American art in private hands, as well as important works of European painting and antiquities. The loan will enhance the museum’s presentations of American and European art in those newly reinstalled galleries, and of modern and contemporary art in the Nancy and Rich Kinder Building, dedicated to the permanent collection and opened in 2020. “All of us at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston are deeply indebted to the Sarofim family for the extraordinary privilege of sharing these remarkable works with the community to which Fayez Sar ... More

Oscar yi Hou (born Liverpool, UK, 1998). The Arm Wrestle of Chip & Spike; aka: Star-Makers, 2020. Oil on canvas, 55 1/2 × 43 in. (141 × 109.2 cm). Purchase gift of Scott Rofey and Olivia Song, 2021.45. © Oscar yi Hou. (Photo: Jonathan Dorado, Brooklyn Museum)

BROOKLYN, NY.- Reflecting a curatorial objective to tell fresh stories from multiple perspectives, the Brooklyn Museum made more than two hundred acquisitions between December 2021 and October 2022, across a variety of categories and mediums. Notably, its holdings by American artists have been broadened to better reflect the diversity of the United States and to create space for underrepresented American voices such as Black, Asian American, Native American, and women artists. These new additions will ultimately be presented in the Museum’s reinstalled American Art wing, a major reinstallation slated to be fully unveiled in late 2024. Anne Pasternak, Shelby White and Leon Levy Director, Brooklyn Museum, says, “It’s important that our acquisitions speak to the issues of our day—both ... More

Peter Blum Gallery opens an exhibition of new paintings by Paul Fägerskiöld   Laisun Keane Gallery opens a solo exhibition by Boston artist Stephen Hamilton   First UK solo exhibition in nearly 60 years by Michael Chow opens at Waddington Custot

Installation view of Paul Fägerskiöld: Blue Marble, Kunstmuseum Thun, Thun, Switzerland, 2021.

NEW YORK, NY.- Peter Blum Gallery is pleased to present an exhibition of new paintings by Paul Fägerskiöld entitled, January 1, 2100. This is the artist’s third solo exhibition with the gallery. The exhibition runs through January 21, 2023. For millennia, the night’s sky with its celestial phenomena has evoked notions of time, place, and being for those gazing up at the endless expanse. The stars as fixed points in the sky viewed from specific locations and days offer a point of departure for artist Paul Fägerskiöld in his series Starry Night. At first shadowy and enigmatic, the paintings upon closer viewing are comprised of numerous coats of thick oil paint creating subtly shimmering and textured monochromatic surfaces in a concave shape. Strewn across the heavily applied and wavy impasto are small, circular unpainted points that flicker the underlying brilliant layers of aquamarine, violet, or crimson. These small points are ... More

Stephen Hamilton, Dance of The Titled Mothers

BOSTON, MASS.- Laisun Keane Gallery is presenting a solo exhibition by Boston artist Stephen Hamilton on view from November 18th to December 31st with text by Kyrah Malika Daniels, Ph.D. Assistant Professor of African American Studies, Emory University. This is the artist's first solo exhibition with the gallery. “Passages” is a visual exploration of life transitions and the liminal spaces between the physical and spiritual worlds. This series examines the movement between adolescence and adulthood, adulthood and elderhood, as well as life, death, and rebirth in African and African-American folklore and philosophy. Cloth is central to crucial moments of passage in West and West-Central Africa. Cloth, dye, and fiber are materials demarcating the sacredness of these moments of transition. For this reason, each work incorporates handmade textiles juxtaposed against figurative painting. This body of work heavily draws from African and ... More

Pink Drop, 2016–2019 (detail). Courtesy of the artist and Waddington Custot.

LONDON.- This November, Waddington Custot presents the first UK solo exhibition in nearly 60 years by Michael Chow (b.1939, Shanghai, China), also known by his signature name ‘M’.  Six large scale paintings are presented alongside a number of “One Breath” works on paper. M’s process is highly performative and unique, adding layer upon layer of paint and other matter onto the surface plane to create works that are both painterly and sculptural. M creates the three-dimensional forms first by pouring household paint, which form giant sheets of colour. He then sculpts the paint sheets onto the canvas, a technique he started over 60 years ago. M incorporates a multitude of found materials into his work – including leaves, eggs, footballs, sterling silver and gold leaf. Painted plastic sheets are stretched onto the canvas and burnt into the surface with a blow torch used like a brush. In a single explosive ... More

The John Michael Kohler Arts Center receives $1M award from Ruth Foundation for the Arts   Buffalo museum to reopen in May   ROSEGALLERY presents a focused curation of staged photographs by Jo Ann Callis, Bruce Charlesworth, and Mary Frey

Ruth DeYoung Kohler. Photo courtesy of John Michael Kohler Arts Center.

SHEBOYGAN, WI.- The John Michael Kohler Arts Center in Sheboygan, Wis., announced today that it has received a $1 million grant from Ruth Foundation for the Arts (Ruth Arts). The grant will support JMKAC general operations such as exhibition and programming development, artist commissions, and digital-asset management systems. The award comes from Ruth Arts’ newly formed RDK Legacy Fund, which honors and continues Ruth DeYoung Kohler II’s (1941–2020) steadfast support of regional and craft-based organizations and artist-built environments. Kohler dedicated five decades of her remarkable life to leading and nurturing the growth of the John Michael Kohler Arts Center. Ruth Arts is a Milwaukee-based foundation supported by a bequest from the late Ruth DeYoung Kohler II. Kohler served as JMKAC’s director from 1972–2016, having started as a volunteer in 1967, then holding the position of assistant director from 1968–1972. &# ... More

In an undated image provided via OMA New York, a rendering of the new Jeffrey E. Gundlach Building opening in May at the Buffalo AKG Art Museum. (via OMA New York via The New York Times)

by Hilarie M. Sheets

NEW YORK, NY.- The former Albright-Knox Art Gallery, now named the Buffalo AKG Art Museum, will reopen to the public on May 25 with a vastly renovated and expanded campus designed by the OMA partner Shohei Shigematsu. A $20 million commitment from New York state, announced Monday by Gov. Kathy Hochul, completes the Buffalo museum’s $230 million capital campaign, believed to be the largest for a cultural institution in the history of western New York. Throughout its history, the museum has been early to acquire works by living artists — beginning with a gift from Hudson River School painter Albert Bierstadt in 1863, the year after it opened. It was also among the first institutions to collect artists including Jackson Pollock, Henry Moore, Frida Kahlo, Andy Warhol and Mark ... More

Mary Frey, Untitled, from the series Real Life, Dramas, 1984-1987. C-Prints, 20 x 24 inches.

SANTA MONICA, CA.- ROSEGALLERY is presenting Domestic Fictions: A Life Less Ordinary, a focused curation of staged photographs by Jo Ann Callis, Bruce Charlesworth, and Mary Frey. A throwback to the charged, introspective themes of MoMA’s 1991 group show Pleasures and Terrors of Domestic Comfort, the exhibition opened on the 19th of November, 2022, and will be on view until the 14th of January, 2023. Curator Peter Galassi — who was promoted to head of the Department of Photography during its remarkable run — stated in MoMA’s 1991 press release that artists, “began to photograph at home not because it was important, in the sense that political issues are important, but because it was there—the one place that is easier to get to than the street.” But don’t let his understatement fool you: these were not convenient photos. By playing with thematic poles, for instance, situating the blatantly contrived beside the ... More

More News
In a 'sea change,' women of the Philharmonic now outnumber the men
NEW YORK, NY.- When the New York Philharmonic moved to Lincoln Center in 1962, its new hall had no women’s dressing rooms. That’s because there were no women in the orchestra. But this fall, as the Philharmonic opens its newly renovated home, David Geffen Hall, its players have returned not only to more equitable facilities backstage but to a milestone onstage: For the first time in its 180-year history, the women in the Philharmonic outnumber the men, 45 to 44. “It’s a sea change,” said Cynthia Phelps, the principal viola, who joined the orchestra in 1992. “This has been a hard-won, long battle, and it continues to be.” The orchestra’s new female majority could prove fleeting — it currently has 16 player vacancies to fill, in part because auditions were put on hold during the pandemic — but it still represents a profound shift for an ensemble that had only five women ... More

David Claerbout's conceptual installation The Close receives U.S. museum premiere at Milwaukee Art Museum
MILWAUKEE, WIS.- This winter, the Milwaukee Art Museum is mounting the U.S. museum premiere of Belgian video and digital artist David Claerbout’s multimedia installation The Close (2022). With this presentation, the Museum bolsters its commitment to exploring the work of contemporary artists whose work pushes the boundaries of traditional disciplines and inspires new modes of thinking about our past, present, and future. Claerbout’s conceptual practice investigates the relationship between images and the passage of time, and with The Close, the artist merges innovative new technology with historic photographic techniques, demonstrating how the practice of photography has evolved in today’s digital age. The Close will be on view in the Museum’s Baker/Rowland Galleries from November 18, 2022, through January 8, 2023. Conceived as a journey from the past ... More

'The Hours' becomes an opera. Don't expect the book or film.
NEW YORK, NY.- “I think it needs to be more surreal,” conductor Yannick Nézet-Séguin said from the orchestra pit of the Metropolitan Opera on a recent afternoon. The scene onstage was nothing but surreal — fragmented light beams suggesting a proscenium; towering, billowing curtains lit in dreamy shades of blue, their translucence revealing the impression of a building facade beyond. Yet Nézet-Séguin, the Met’s music director, was more interested in another element: the chorus, offstage and coloristic, an otherworldly fixture of an otherworldly environment. None of that is reminiscent of “The Hours” in its earlier iterations: Michael Cunningham’s Pulitzer Prize-winning 1998 novel; or the 2002 Stephen Daldry film, which was defined as much by its tensely churning Philip Glass score as by its Oscar-bait trio of leading stars, Nicole Kidman, Julianne Moore and Meryl Streep. ... More

GAVLAK opens an intergenerational exhibition of Latin American artists
LOS ANGELES, CA.- GAVLAK is presenting Terms of Belonging, an intergenerational exhibition of Latin American artists featuring Allora & Calzadilla, Candida Alvarez, Jose Alvarez (D.O.P.A.), Iván Argote, Ricardo Brey, Gisela Colón, Débora Delmar, Teresita Fernández, Ignacio Gatica, Lucia Hierro, Alfredo Jaar, Anuar Maauad, Carlos Martiel, Joiri Minaya, Gabriela Salazar, Yoab Vera, and Valeria Tizol Vivas. The exhibition opened on October 22 and will continue through December 10, 2022. A closing panel moderated by curator Susanna V. Temkin, PhD. will take place on Saturday, December 10, 2022 and Valeria Tizol Vivas will perform her durational piece Mejunje: la encendida. The word “belonging” conveys an effortless kinship: a natural affinity between like and like. The imposition of the word “terms,” however, shatters this ideal and serves to remind that communities ... More

The joke's on Batman as historic 'Detective' comic featuring The Joker's debut sells for record-setting price
DALLAS, TX.- During the first 90 minutes of Heritage Auctions’ Nov. 17-20 Comics & Comic Art Signature® Auction, 66 lots of comic books and comic art realized more than $5.5 million, and an original 1987 Calvin and Hobbes tied the first Flash Gordon for the world’s most valuable newspaper strip. Things got only more exciting from there. By Sunday night, every single one of the four-day event’s 1,404 lots sold to the more than 5,500 bidders worldwide who helped bring the auction’s total to $18,589,015. And several significant records were set, including one for Detective Comics No. 168 – the comic book that tells the origin story of The Joker, who's clearly having the last laugh. An issue of Detective Comics No. 168 graded CGC Near-Mint 9.4 realized $324,000 to smash the previous record for the book. This historic book had never before been offered at auction in a grade ... More

The Nohra Haime Gallery celebrates its 40th anniversary with exhibition
NEW YORK, NY.- Since opening its doors in 1981, Nohra Haime Gallery has been recognized for its consistent representation of International, Latin American, sculpture and women artists, often exhibiting work that defies easy categorization, providing a unique viewing experience for all. The eclectic group of works in this special anniversary exhibition honors the roots of the gallery’s fearless beginning, and presents an exciting look into its future, bringing together 40 artists in celebration of 40 years. The exhibition showcases the variety of artistic vision and perspectives associated with the gallery. On view include the fantastically intricate glass blown compositions by American artist Beth Lipman, conceptual and sensual works by Colombian artist Adrianna Marmorek, and the iconic and joyous Nana figure by Niki de Saint Phalle. Paintings include meditative strokes by Chilean artist Francesca ... More

Andrew Kreps Gallery now represents the Estate of Hollis Sigler
NEW YORK, NY.- Andrew Kreps Gallery announced representation of the Estate of Hollis Sigler (b. 1948, Gary, IN, d. 2001, Prairie View, IL). Sigler was an educator, activist, and pioneering feminist artist, who lived and worked in Chicago. Hollis Sigler rose to prominence in the 1970s as part of Chicago's vibrant art scene, co-founding Artemesia Gallery, a female cooperative gallery in the city. By the late 1970s, Sigler had abandoned photorealism in favor of a naive style of representation, influenced by the unrestrained drawing of her youth, and driven by a desire to shift how narrative was communicated in art. Centered on the experiences of women, Sigler's works from the early 1980s portrayed domestic scenes set within skewed, nearly theatrical spaces. Figures were often depicted in shadow or absent entirely from Sigler's compositions, and in their place, ... More

How Carolyn Maloney's ticket to the Met Gala led to an ethics inquiry
NEW YORK, NY.- The Met Gala is one of the must-be-seen events on Manhattan’s social calendar, a chance to pose among the biggest names in fashion, film and music on the red-carpeted steps of the Metropolitan Museum. So when Rep. Carolyn B. Maloney, a Manhattan Democrat known for her support of the arts, learned in 2016 that she had been dropped from the guest list for that year’s gala, she evidently could not abide it. Maloney called up a powerful friend and, in a time-honored New York tradition, appears to have done her own version of trying to sweet-talk her way on the list. “I received a call this past week from Carolyn,” Emily Kernan Rafferty, the museum’s former president, wrote in an email to its director and a trustee at the time. “She is unhappy to say the least that she is not receiving an invitation to the Party of the Year.” What happened next ultimately landed Maloney an invitation, ... More

Phillips to present 'Portraiture' by Seneca
NEW YORK, NY.- Phillips announced Portraiture by Seneca, the latest body of work by All Seeing Seneca featuring three animated 1:1 NFTs alongside the artist’s first painting to be offered at auction. Gaining international acclaim for her role as the lead designer of the Bored Ape Yacht Club, Seneca has since become a central figure in the digital art world. Depicting the stages of invocation, emergence, endurance, and persistence, each work in Portraiture details a presence in oneself that is ultimately manifested through the artist's vivid imagery. Through this project, Seneca continues to push and develop the visual vocabulary of her own metaphorical creatures through different mediums. The NFTs in Portraiture will be minted through MoonPay’s new self-service platform, HyperMint, and the sale will be open for bidding on from 29 November to 2 December. ... More

The Korean Cultural Centre UK opens an exhibition featuring six international artists
LONDON.- The Korean Cultural Centre UK presents a new exhibition 2022 KCC UK x Germany Open Call Begin Again, opening on 23 November until 4 February at 1-3 Strand, London, featuring six international artists: Ya-Wen Fu, Iden Sungyoung Kim, Sooun Kim, Nina Nowak, Kyungmin Sophia Son, and Yambe Tam. To expand the opportunity of these talented emerging artists, the KCC Open Call has been designed to travel across two major cities, London and Berlin. Entitled Begin Again, the finalists of the 2022 KCC UK and Germany Open Call creatively reflect upon the notion of change and re-imagination. The title Begin Again means an attempt to look for change through uncertainty. The process of finding innovation in a chaotic situation is achieved through constant questioning. The KCCUK’s annual Open Call exhibition invites six artists selected by the following four jurors: ... More

In life and music, Ned Rorem was unwaveringly himself
NEW YORK, NY.- Several years ago, during one in a series of visits I made to Ned Rorem’s apartment, he said with his trademark lightness that it would be “kind of cute” to make it to 100 years old. This composer, diarist and reluctant pioneer of gay liberation was nearing 95 at the time and had me convinced that he would live at least another five more years. Rorem has always looked young for his age, and longevity runs in his family. Scandinavian genes, he liked to say. His memory had declined, and his wit — perhaps his greatest gift — was more sanded down than sharp. Still, he was in good health — enough, perhaps, to witness his centennial year in 2023. Which he nearly did; Rorem turned 99 last month but died Friday. Occasionally, when I would mention to someone that I was planning to stop by Rorem’s apartment — a relic of the Upper West Side’s middle-class past, ... More

MFAH Films | Highlights

On a day like today, Mexican painter José Clemente Orozco was born
November 23, 1883. José Clemente Orozco (November 23, 1883 - September 7, 1949) was a Mexican painter, who specialized in political murals that established the Mexican Mural Renaissance together with murals by Diego Rivera, David Alfaro Siqueiros, and others. Orozco was the most complex of the Mexican muralists, fond of the theme of human suffering, but less realistic and more fascinated by machines than Rivera. In this image: Jose Clemente Orozco’s The Epic of American Civilization, created between 1932 and 1934.

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