Top Art Stories: Questions and Answers

Top Art Stories this week cover what you need to know about museums, private sales, celebrity collectors and art fraud arrests. Also, keep in mind that the beautiful egg sculptures that have been hidden around New York City for the last couple of weeks as part of the The Fabergé Big Egg Hunt are all for sale! The event is 100% charitable raising money for children in New York and Asian elephants. You can bid online on paddle8 and live at Sotheby’s on April 22th. It’s a great cause but we are sad to see them go… See the slideshow for some of our top picks.

According to What? arrived at the Brooklyn Museum

A_weiweiAfter touring the United States, with the most recent stop at the new Perez Art Museum Miami, the show “Ai Weiwei: According to What?” reached its final destination in Brooklyn last week. Although one ancient vase less, the exhibition has been spruced up by two new installation pieces completed in 2013. One of them, “S.A.C.R.E.D.”  was exhibited at the Venice Biennale last year. The artist himself still remains under the restriction by the Chinese government, but that doesn’t stop him from making new works and shipping them out of China. Source: The New York Times

Sotheby’s private sales gallery S|2 to offer three blockbuster shows this May

S_weiweiThis auction season Sotheby’s private sales division is organizing three very distinct shows opening May 3rd, 2014 at its New York headquarters. Coinciding with May sales of Contemporary and Modern art in New York, these selling exhibitions provide a great opportunity to view and collect in depth works in a variety of media by a handful of celebrated artists. Major works by the father of Art Brut, Jean Dubuffet, works from the 1940s to the 1980s by the father of Op Art, Victor Vasarely, and finally, surged by collecting interest and record prices at auction, jewelry by three renowned Contemporary artists: Anish Kapoor, Claude Lalanne and Sophia Vari. The prices range from $5,000 to $3 million. Source: Sotheby’s

Photography is taking over museums

P_weiweiThe growing popularity of photography exhibitions is stimulating museums to dedicate more of their space and programming to the medium. An explanation to this is pretty simple: photography, as an artistic medium, is probably the most relevant to everyday life than any other medium. People continue to be drawn to it as a result of the growing popularity of photo-sharing networks like Instagram which brought out photography masters in all of us and allowed us to not only take photographs but, most importantly, to share them with others. This process, which for many has already become a routine, made some of us more sophisticated in a way… made us think carefully about composition and process, and as a result – it brings a desire to learn from the photography masters through their work. Source: The Art Newspaper

Tell me whom you collect, and I’ll tell you who you are

C_weiweiEver wondered what kind of art celebrities collect? We think that it is just another great way to learn something new about a famous person and the art market. Artnet compiled a short list of celebrity collectors and named a few artists in their collections. Check it out to see which artists are trending among celebrities and see if you have the same taste in art with these famous people. Besides the rather predictable Warhols and Hirsts, there are some fresh contemporary artists in the list that you might want to look into and perhaps check them out  at the next art fair. Who knows, maybe you’ll stumble upon Brad Pitt at that booth? Source: Artnet

Key suspect in art fraud was arrested, the con artist still to be found

F_weiweiFugitive art dealer Jose Carlos Bergantiños Diaz was arrested on Friday. His girlfriend, Glafira Rosales, was charged last May and pleaded guilty in September. The two carried out a bold 15-year art fraud generating millions of dollars by selling fake paintings through the offices of what was once New York’s oldest gallery, Knoedler & Company (closed in 2011). The only missing player in this scheme, still to be located and charged, is the painter Pei-Shen Qian, an immigrant from China who painted the incredible imitations of Pollock, Rothko, Kline, works that sold quite successfully passing as newly discovered masterpieces and sold to some really important collectors like Gucci’s and later Tom Ford International’s Domenico de Sole. Source: The New York Times

Should we be happy or concerned about MoMA’s expansion?

M_weiweiAs MoMA’s second expansion in a decade is just around the corner with the demolition of the former American Folk Art Museum scheduled to begin this week, criticism from art critics, artists, patrons and museum visitors is heating up. This criticism is targeted largely at Glenn Lowry, the museum director for the last 20 years. Some argue that the museum culture has become too corporate and overshadows its principal curatorial values. The main problem for the critics, notably Jerry Saltz, is that the museum keeps getting bigger, but not better pushing MoMA towards becoming “a place geared more for social interaction than thoughtful contemplation”. Source: The New York Times

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