This Week’s 10 Most Important Art News Stories

Artsy Editorial
Aug 28, 2015 6:45PM

Catch up on the latest art news with our rundown of the 10 stories you need to know this week.


This week’s global market uncertainty had art collectors trying to liquidize assets, whether by borrowing against artworks or simply looking to sell them. With major investment banks offering art-backed loans, art financing has been expanding along with the market. But the impact of this week’s selloff on the art market isn’t yet clear, with most galleries closed for vacation. (via Bloomberg)


On Monday, a 12-year-old boy stumbled in a Taipei museum, catching his fall on what was originally claimed to be Paolo Porpora’s Flowers (c. 1665) and leaving a fist-sized hole in his wake. The boy and his family are not being charged for the restoration of the $1.5 million painting, which may actually be a fake. (via Focus Taiwan)


After the disintegration of talks with National Museums Scotland (NMS) concerning weekend pay changes, 120 staff members have begun a week-long strike. The strike comes as labor actions grip museums across the U.K., as well as during the Edinburgh Festival, when the city is at its busiest. An NMS spokesperson announced that while the Scottish Galleries will be closed, the National Museum of Scotland and the National War Museum will remain partially open during the strike. (via BBC News)


An unidentified 56-year-old man has been arrested by Dutch authorities, following an alleged attempt to sell a fake replica of a study of Van Gogh’s The Harvest (1888) for $17 million, along with forged documentation from the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam. According to police, potential buyers from across the globe had already showed interest in the forgery. (via BBC News) 


The Metropolitan Museum of Art has announced details of its plans to move its modern and contemporary art annex into the Marcel Breuer-designed building that formerly housed the Whitney Museum of American Art. The newly dubbed Met Breuer will undergo a renovation and restoration before it opens in March 2016. Plans include a “book bar” and a Vijay Iyer performance installation on the lobby level, as well as a sunken garden. The inaugural exhibition highlighting unfinished works from the Museum’s collection, spanning from the Renaissance to the present, is set to span all four floors. (via ARTnews)


On Saturday, a Palestinian artist was forcibly removed from Bansky’s Dismaland after staging a protest against three Israeli artists whose work is on display. Upon his arrival to the show, Shadi Alzaqzouq found out that the artists, one of whom was a member of the Israel Defense Forces, were also participating. Upset that he wasn’t informed, the artist put a sheet with the words “R.I.P. Gaza: Boycott Israel” over his own work, laying down in front of it “like a corpse.” (via the Independent)


It’s been a bruising week for art—just a day before a 12-year-old put his fist through a 350-year-old painting in Taipei, a 2,000-year-old vase was knocked over by a young girl at the Israel Museum in Jerusalem. The vase broke along an old crack, but, according to the museum, the artifact has already been restored to look better than it did before the accident. (via ARTnews)


Raymond James Financial’s executive chairman Tom James has announced that he will be purchasing two floors of a building in St. Petersburg, Florida, in order to house his collection of Western and Native American art. James will provide a $75 million donation to the museum, set to open in 2017, and half of the 133,600 square feet space will be dedicated to showing his collection. (via Artforum)


Three Japanese sliding door paintings, thought to be lost or destroyed, have been rediscovered in a storage facility in Chicago. The two-sided paintings by Hashimoto Gaho are originals from the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition. Though in moderately stable condition, the artworks will undergo conservation efforts; it has not been determined where they will be displayed. (via Artfix Daily) 


Tan Boon Hui has been hired as the Asia Society Museum’s director and vice president of global arts and cultural programs. Set to start in December, Tan will be coming from the National Heritage Board, where he currently serves as the group director of programs. He also curated the Singapore Pavilion of the 2003 edition of the Venice Biennale, in addition to being a founding board member of the International Biennials Association. (via ARTnews)

In other news… 


Director of the Savitsky Art Museum in Nukus, Uzbekistan, Marinika Babanazarova has been abruptly let go by the local government for undisclosed reasons. (via ARTnews)

After fighting off attempts by the bankrupt city to sell its collection, the Detroit Institute of Arts will be giving around $49,000 worth of raises to Graham Beal, Annmarie Erickson, and Robert Bowen as compensation for leading the institution during its recent tumultuous period. (via Artforum)

After the city threatened to pull the plug on collector Bruce Berkowitz’s plans for a private museum in Miami, an agreement has been reached, giving the project the green light. The museum is to showcase works by Richard Serra and James Turrell, among others. (via The Art Newspaper)

Sotheby’s London has announced that Bob Dylan’s manuscript for the song “A Hard Rain’s A-Gonna Fall” will be offered at the September 29 “Rock & Pop” sale. (via ARTnews)

After 14 years of bureaucratic delays, William Kentridge has been given approval to create a 550-meter-long frieze by power-washing pollution from embankments along the river Tiber in Rome. (via The Art Newspaper)

A booming art market has caused new players, including experts from top auction houses, to leave their current posts to become private art advisors, a trend that is changing the profession to one that holds greater negotiation power, moves faster, and pursues trophy art aggressively. (via the New York Times)

Frank Gehry has revealed details regarding his designs for a $300 million development that would span five buildings and run along Los Angeles’s Sunset Strip. (via Artforum)

The Onassis Cultural Center has announced plans for its inaugural Onassis Festival NY, which is set to include 43 events in New York this October, featuring work by Jenny Holzer, Jonah Bokaer, and Paul Giamatti, among others. (via the New York Times)

As part of broader art-fueled recovery efforts, this weekend in New Orleans, the Joan Mitchell Center, a $12.5 million artist retreat sponsored by the artist’s foundation, made its debut with its first full residency program.

Current design director and curator at the Walker Art Center Andrew Blauvelt will leave to serve as Cranbrook Art Museum’s director. (via ARTnews)

Sotheby’s will also be offering ABBA’s piano at auction this September. (via ARTnews)

The Frank Lloyd Wright house will have its public debut on November 11th at the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, which recently acquired the 1954 house. (via Artforum)

Make your weekend plans with our preview of exhibitions on view in cities across the globe.

Artsy Editorial