Art Industry News is a daily digest of the most important developments in the art world and the art market. Here is what you need to know this Monday, January 10.
NEED TO READ
Nigeria faces tensions over bronze returns to Benin – Who will control the Beninese bronzes once back in Nigeria? This is the question at the heart of a power struggle between Oba Ewuare II, the current king of Benin, and the new nonprofit Legacy Restoration Trust, which is working on the construction of a new museum to house the Beninese bronzes repatriated. While the trust has already become a point of contact for institutions around the world, the royal court has planned its own Royal Museum of Benin for the treasures. Now the Nigerian National Museums and Monuments Commission has added its hat to the ring to help oversee the returned artefacts. (The arts journal)
Billionaire’s looted art still on display at Israel Museum – Some of the stolen items that US billionaire Michael Steinhardt recently returned as part of a deal with the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office are still on display in the Israel Museum. The former hedge fund manager handed over a total of 180 coins worth $ 70 million last month. But a 2,200-year-old limestone tablet known as the Heliodorus Stele and two ancient masks are in the Israel Museum, of which Steinhardt is a long-time patron. The museum said it was studying the matter. (Chicago Sun Times)
Damien Hirst’s country house is an ‘eyesore’ – Seventeen years after its acquisition by one of the richest artists in the world, Britain’s historic Toddington mansion remains uninhabited and covered in scaffolding, frustrating local residents who call it a “horror”, a “white spot” and “a plague on the countryside.” When Hirst bought it in 2005 for £ 3million ($ 4million), he vowed to restore it to its former glory by making it his family home and a gallery for his personal art collection. (Guardian)
Ron Perelman talks about his downsizing – A Miró, Matisse and Giacometti with a combined value of $ 129 million are among the works of art billionaire Ron Perelman has sold in recent years to help pay off multibillion-dollar loans to his businesses, including Revlon and Vericast, which have been hit hard by the pandemic. He might sell more art this year because he reunited with his former art dealer Larry Gagosian, whom he sued in 2012. I don’t even know what our fight was about. Do you want to forget it? ‘ ”, Recalls Perelman. “He said, ‘I wouldn’t like anything better. “” (New York Times)
MOVERS AND IMPROVERS
This website wants to be Tumblr for Crypto – JPG, a new platform that allows users to create their own NFT gallery by importing and viewing any NFT available on OpenSea, wants to become the Tumblr of the crypto world. The site, which launched in July, received $ 3.8 million in a recent round of seed funding. (ARTnews)
St. Louis Museum will close for the month – The Saint Louis Art Museum is the latest American art institution to close due to an increase in the number of Omicron cases among staff members. It should reopen on Tuesday February 1. (KDSK)
Maryan Estate joins Kamel Mennour – The estate of the late Jewish painter of Polish origin Maryan has joined the Parisian gallery Kamel Mennour. The announcement follows a much-loved retrospective of the artist, which was one of the first in its time to reflect the horrors of the Holocaust, at the Museum of Contemporary Art North Miami. (ARTnews)
Melania Trump is all about NFTs – While Donald Trump described cryptocurrency as a “swindle“, his wife fully embraces the NFT craze with a second auction on her new platform.” The Head of State’s Collection “includes the hat Melania Trump wore when she greeted the French President Emmanuel Macron at the White House in 2018 and an original watercolor portrait of her in the hat (plus an NFT of the portrait, natch) by Marc- Antoine Coulon. The sale, which runs from January 11 to 25, accepts SOL, the cryptocurrency of the Solana blockchain platform. (Washington post)
FOR THE LOVE OF ART
Frédéric Bruly Bouabré on the front of the stage at MoMA – The Museum of Modern Art in New York will present the first American museum investigation of the Ivorian artist in “Frédéric Bruly Bouabré: World Unbound”, from March 13 to August 13. The exhibition will present more than 1,000 drawings by the artist, who used his craft to invent a writing system. (Press release)
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