Art


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The Museum Problem – Is It More A Relevance Problem?

In reality, museums merely reflect the massive inequalities in society at large. After the pandemic, museums may represent an even greater concentration of wealth in fewer hands. The American Alliance of Museums has that roughly a third of museums may never reopen. Almost half of those that will reopen expect to do so with reduced staff. A study of the arts and culture sector of New York City suggests that the revenue of smaller institutions has been disproportionately affected by the lockdow...
Tags: Art, New York City, Visual, American Alliance of Museums, 08.11.20


WPA Murals Slated For Demolition Saved, Thanks To Black Nurse Born In 1818

History of Medicine in California, a 1938 ten-panel fresco by Bernard Zakheim, is in a building at UCal-San Francisco that the school is going to tear down and replace. UCSF gave Zakheim’s family 90 days this summer to find a way to get the 2,000-pound paintings removed (at Zakheim expense) or they would be destroyed. Then a young scholar discovered that one fresco features Biddy Mason, a formerly enslaved woman who became an admired nurse, midwife, and philanthropist — and a cause was born. – ...
Tags: Art, California, San Francisco, Visual, UCSF, Biddy Mason, Zakheim, 08.11.20, Bernard Zakheim


Goethe Was Wrong About Art (At Least Abstract Art): Study

“In Goethe’s 1810 treatise on color he wrote, ‘red-yellow gives an impression of warmth and gladness.’ He added that ‘the feelings they excite are quick, lively, aspiring.’ His idea that visual attributes, like color and form, cause universal responses in viewers has influenced art theory ever since. But a study published earlier this year in the PLOS ONE journal contested the idea that everyone experiences the same emotions when viewing abstractions.” – ARTnews
Tags: Art, Visual, Goethe, 08.05.20


World’s First Entirely Virtual, Entirely Interactive Art Museum Opens Aug. 14

The Virtual Online Museum of Art (VOMA) …, curated by London-based art dealer Lee Cavaliere, will feature masterpieces on loan from international institutions such as Musée d’Orsay, Whitney Museum of American Art, the Museum of Modern Art and the Art Institute of Chicago. … Additionally, VOMA will present commissioned artworks by international contemporary artists as part of its newly-launched Digital Firsts Commission Programme.” – Yahoo! (AFP)
Tags: Art, London, Visual, Musée, Art Institute of Chicago, 08.03.20, VOMA, Lee Cavaliere


Philadelphia Museum Of Art To Reopen At Half Speed

Attendance is expected to be between 1,500 and 1,700 visitors per day, or about half of what’s normal, said Jessica Sharpe, the museum’s chief of membership and visitor operations. – Philadelphia Inquirer
Tags: Art, Philadelphia, Visual, 08.10.20, Jessica Sharpe


How Rodin Ensured His Museum Would Stay Solvent

When he died in 1917, Rodin left his estate to the museum, including the original plaster molds of more than 100 sculptures. “Rodin gave the economical system so that the museum could live,” museum communications director Clémence Goldberger explains. The museum still uses these molds to recast new bronze sculptures and sell them — and with a projected loss of 3 million euros this year, the molds have never proved more valuable. – NPR
Tags: Art, Rodin, Visual, 08.08.20, Clémence Goldberger


What It’s Like To Go Back Into A Museum

“The argument for reopening our cultural institutions has been made with force: art sustains us, say the museum executives over the morning airwaves. But when I enter the exhibition, the first thing I wish is that, in the quest for sufficient sustenance, I’d brought a bottle of water—the mask dehydrates you quickly.” – Prospect
Tags: Art, Visual, 08.01.20


Raphael Probably Was Buried At The Pantheon

In the year of the 500th anniversary of Raphel’s death, a 3-D reconstruction of his face, using a plaster mask of his skull, provides what may be “concrete proof that the skeleton exhumed from the Pantheon in 1833 belonged to Raffaello Sanzio and [may open] the paths towards possible future molecular studies aimed at validating this identity.” – The Guardian (UK)
Tags: Art, Raphael, Visual, Raphel, Raffaello Sanzio, 08.07.20


Visual Artists Stuck At Home Are Using The Virtual World As Source Material

Paint what you see – including virtual realities that might just be based on paintings. – CBC
Tags: Art, Visual, 08.07.20


In A Very Abnormal Year, Indigenous Art Persists

Artist Ngarralja Tommy May, a Wangkajunga-Walmajarri artist, has won the major prize at the (streamed) National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art awards. Said another winner (for painting), “I love the ability to make sure that people like myself feel included in the visual national identity of Australia.” – The Guardian (UK)
Tags: Art, Australia, Visual, Torres Strait Islander, Said, National Aboriginal, 08.07.20, Ngarralja Tommy


Frank Gehry’s New Eisenhower Memorial In DC – Last Of The “Great Men” Memorials?

Over the past decade, and at almost every step — from the design competition to the groundbreaking in 2017 — the project was dogged by controversy, subject to congressional hearings and, at one point, effectively defunded by the government. – Washington Post
Tags: Art, Frank Gehry, Dc, Visual, 08.07.20


Tourist Fesses Up To Breaking Toes Off Canova Sculpture

The tourist, on a trip to celebrate his 50th birthday, was visiting an art museum in northern Italy last week when he posed with the statue of a reclining Pauline Bonaparte. Her husband had commissioned the seminude sculpture by the Italian artist Antonio Canova in the early 19th century. It is known as Pauline Bonaparte as Venus Victrix. What happened next might be attributable to the reckless exuberance that big birthdays often bring. – The New York Times
Tags: Art, Italy, Visual, Venus Victrix, Antonio Canova, Pauline Bonaparte, 08.07.20


What’s The Definition Of ‘Museum’? The International Council Of Museums Is Tearing Itself Up Over That Question

“In recent months, several people working on the committee to revise the body’s definition of what a museum is have resigned, and there have been accusations of ‘back-alley political games.’ The Council’s president has also quit her post. For some, these disagreements reflect a wider split in the museum world about whether such institutions should be places that exhibit and research artifacts, or ones that actively engage with political and social issues.” – The New York Times
Tags: Art, Council, Issues, Visual, International Council of Museums, 08.06.20


Staffers At Philadelphia Museum Of Art Vote Overwhelmingly To Unionize

The vote tally was 181 to 22. “While organizers said there were many reasons behind the union drive, complaints against two Art Museum supervisors provided the movement with energy. Organizers hoped that union representation would ’empower staff in the face of incidents of harassment and discrimination like those publicized in January of this year.'” – The Philadelphia Inquirer
Tags: Art, Philadelphia, Visual, Art Museum, 08.06.20


How Instagram Is Changing The Job Of A Critic

Being unable to see real works of art in person for months has made me realize just how much I have come to depend on seeing works online—and how I get more from that experience than I’d been willing to admit. I have not felt much desire to delve into the online offerings of galleries and museums, but nonetheless I have been seeing lots of art onscreen—it’s just that I’ve been getting it straight from the artists, mainly via their Instagram accounts. I’ve liked that. – The Nation
Tags: Art, Instagram, Visual, 08.05.20


What A Profound Design Revolution Curb Cuts Were

“The need for accessible streets and sidewalks has utterly reshaped the contemporary cityscape, and the most profound change is also the most modest: the curb cuts that you’ll find now at many street corners in cities all over the world. The revolution in street corners seems like an obvious civic good now, a common‐sense softening at the edges of the built environment, a simple solution to buffer the concrete shape of a world built with homogenous users in mind. But it would not have happened ...
Tags: Art, Visual, 08.05.20


Meet Canada’s New $2 Coin

The artwork appearing on the toonie honouring his legacy is known as Xhuwaji, Haida Grizzly Bear. Reid painted it in 1988 on a ceremonial drum belonging to the Sam family of Ahousat, B.C. – CBC
Tags: Art, Canada, Sam, Visual, Reid, 08.05.20


Abstract Art Can Changes Your Mindset: Study

Looking at non-representational art tends to induce what’s called “psychological distance.” As one of the lead researchers put it, “This means that art has an effect on our general cognitive state, that goes beyond how much we enjoy it, to change the way we perceive events and make decisions.” – Inverse
Tags: Art, Ideas, Visual, 08.03.20


All The Flags Now At NYC’s Rockefeller Center Were Custom-Designed By Artists (Some Of Them Quite Famous)

“Hundreds of New Yorkers submitted proposals earlier this year to design eight-by-five-foot flags. This past Saturday, the 192 winning designs were unfurled on the [flagpoles] surrounding the plaza’s ice rink. In addition to the open call, 13 well-known artists” — among them Laurie Anderson, Faith Ringgold, KAWS, Marina Abramović, Hank Willis Thomas, Jenny Holzer, Sanford Biggers, Sarah Sze, and Carmen Herrera — “were also commissioned to create flags.” – Artnet
Tags: Art, NYC, Visual, Carmen Herrera, 08.04.20


Seattle Children’s Museum In Turmoil Over Black Lives Matter Post

Staff posted to social media but the museum’s director later deleted “Black Lives Matter” from the posts. Some museum staff went on strike, and then were laid off. – The New York Times
Tags: Art, Black Lives Matter, Visual, 08.04.20


Call For More Transparency In Choosing Public Art

“There is a cultural revolution happening in the United States, and people are realizing that they have the power to be more engaged with how public art is decided,” explained Patricia Walsh, who helps run the Public Art Network, a membership group of more than a thousand public art professionals organized by the nonprofit Americans for the Arts. “Best practices need to be reinvented to become more equitable and diverse.” – ARTnews
Tags: Art, United States, Visual, Patricia Walsh, 08.04.20, Public Art Network


Installation Art As Big Business Proposition (Think Of Kusama Infinity Rooms, But For Profit)

“Superblue, as [the venture] is called, will open a series of experiential art centers (EACs for short) that won’t sell precious objects, as conventional galleries do. They’ll present art experiences: deep dives into all-encompassing works by such artists as JR, the French photographer who focuses on issues like migration, displacement and imprisonment; and James Turrell, the celebrated Light and Space artist.” What are they selling? Tickets, of course. – The New York Times
Tags: Art, Visual, James Turrell, Kusama Infinity, 08.04.20


Beirut Explosion Wrecks Galleries And Museums

“The damage rocked an already fragile Beirut to its core and wreaked havoc on the city’s renowned art scene. Major art galleries, including Marfa Gallery, located close to Beirut’s Port, and Galerie Tanit were completely destroyed. … The Sursock Museum, once the centre of Beirut’s cultural life in the 1960s and which was reopened in 2015 following a costly restoration, was severely damaged.” – The Art Newspaper
Tags: Art, Beirut, Port, Visual, 08.05.20, Marfa Gallery


Cultural Turmoil In Bolivia – Museum Directors Fired

The dismissals are only a small part of the changes implemented by the new government. On 1 July, the National Archaeology Museum (MUNARQ), which answered to the ministry of cultures and tourism, was closed by the police, its personnel evicted, and the future of its highly perishable artefacts put at risk. Two days later it was announced that the ministry of cultures and tourism (created by a Morales presidential decree in 2009) would itself disappear and become a vice-ministry under the minist...
Tags: Art, Bolivia, Visual, Morales, 07.29.20, National Archaeology Museum MUNARQ


Met Museum Ends Free Internships – Now They’ll All Be Paid

The museum says that as a result of Adrienne Arsht’s gift, it is now the single biggest art museum in the US to offer 100% paid internships to nearly 120 undergraduate and graduate interns each year, widening access for students who cannot afford to work without compensation. It says that the internships enable interns to learn about museum practice in over 40 department areas. – The Art Newspaper
Tags: Art, US, Visual, 08.03.20, Adrienne Arsht


Time To Repatriate Africa’s Heritage

It’s a familiar story across Africa: 90 to 95 percent of Africa’s heritage is held outside the continent, according to a 2018 report commissioned by French President Emmanuel Macron. Given the shameful manner in which African artifacts were taken and the collapse of the colonial empires that enabled the looting, it is time for European institutions to reevaluate claims of restitution. – Foreign Policy
Tags: Art, Africa, Heritage, Visual, Emmanuel Macron, 07.28.20


Another Selfie-Greedy Tourist Breaks Another Artwork

“This time, the victim was a historic plaster model by the Italian artist Antonio Canova (1757–1822). On July 31, a misguided Austrian tourist snapped the toes off the Neoclassical sculpture Pauline Bonaparte as Venus Victrix, housed at [the town of] Possagno’s Museo Antonio Canova in northeast Italy, while attempting to sit on its lap for a photo.” – Artnet
Tags: Art, Italy, Visual, Venus Victrix, Possagno, Antonio Canova, Pauline Bonaparte, 08.03.20, Museo Antonio Canova


Putting Up A Monument To The Unknown Enslaved People Of The United States

As the Civil War raged, Kentucky was officially neutral – but it was a slave state. Freedom lay just across the river in Indiana, says poet Hannah Drake, whose nonprofit is preparing to install a kind of monument to those who dreamt of escape. “The memorial will start as a path of cast or carved footprints. That will lead people from nearby history museums to the river, where there will be limestone benches. Then there will be more footprints leading to the river’s edge.” – NPR
Tags: Art, Kentucky, Indiana, United States, Visual, 08.01.20, Hannah Drake


When The American Museum Of Natural History Reopens, It Will No Longer Be Pay As You Wish

The planned reopening date is September 9, but of course not if infections start to crest again in New York. And, of course, “when it reopens, it will limit capacity to 25% and reduce its operating days to five instead of seven.” Then there’s the little matter of paying what the museum wishes, not what you wish. – Hyperallergic
Tags: Art, New York, Visual, 07.31.20


The Strange New Life Of Objects In The Coronavirus Era

There are the familiar objects that suddenly seem to glow with importance – toilet paper rolls, Lysol wipes – and then there are the new objects: the to-go cocktail pouch, the ultra-large Burger King social distance crown, the virus piñata to hit and kill, and, of course, Black Lives Matter facemasks. – The New York Times
Tags: Art, Black Lives Matter, Burger King, Visual, 08.01.20



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