Tag: Art

Painter of Elijah Cummings Portrait Finds It’s a Career-Changer

One Baltimore son has painted another. When Representative Elijah E. Cummings died in October 2019 at age 68, he became the first African American elected official to lie in state at the U.S. Capitol, where he served for more than two decades in the House of Representatives from Maryland’s 7th District. In January, the congressman’s […]

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On Japan’s Pacific Coast, an Artist Communes With Nature

IN AN EDO-PERIOD farmhouse near the rural seaside town of Isumi, two hours southeast of Tokyo, soft light filters through paper-and-wood-lattice doors onto seven clay vessels as big and round as marine buoys; their pale surfaces glow against the building’s wood posts and beams, which have been blackened over time by smoke from an open […]

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For Andy Warhol, Faith and Sexuality Intertwined

The art historian John Richardson, speaking to the glittering crowd at Andy Warhol’s memorial service at St. Patrick’s Cathedral in 1987, said of the artist’s Catholic faith: “Those of you who knew him in circumstances that were the antithesis of spiritual may be surprised that such a side existed. But exist it did, and it’s […]

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Cutting a Banksy Into 10,000 (Digital) Pieces

In the latest example of art market disruption, a prominent former auction executive teamed up with cryptocurrency experts in May to purchase the 2005 Banksy painting “Love Is in the Air” for $12.9 million and now plans to sell off 10,000 pieces of it as NFTs, or nonfungible tokens. The executive, Loic Gouzer, who upended […]

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Turner Prize Goes to Array Collective, an Art Protest Group

COVENTRY, England — Array Collective, a group of 11 artists who attend political protests in Northern Ireland, wearing carnivalesque costumes and holding funny, provocative banners, has won the Turner Prize, the biggest award in British art. The announcement was made on Wednesday night during a ceremony at Coventry Cathedral in this English city, where an […]

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With Armory Show, the World Is Catching Up to Carrie Mae Weems

Now, of course, the entire nation is confronting issues of police violence against Black people; the exclusion of people of color from the museum canon; and the lack of Black and brown representation in Hollywood. But those who have followed Weems over the 40 years of her practice — through photography, video, installation, music and […]

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Andrea Bowers: Her Activism Animates Her Art

When Bowers got in trouble in 2019, it was not over her identity, but for work she made in support of the #MeToo movement. At Art Basel in Switzerland, she presented an installation made of 167 panels, each one presenting the case of a person accused of sexual misconduct. Texts cited the person’s response to […]

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Met Museum Jump-Starts New Modern Wing With $125 Million Gift

Seven years after announcing ambitious plans to rebuild its wing for Modern and contemporary art — which then had to be put on hold because of financial problems — the Metropolitan Museum of Art on Tuesday announced that it had finally secured a lead donation of $125 million, the largest capital gift in its history, […]

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The Confounding Lightness of Helen Pashgian

SANTA FE, N.M. — Helen Pashgian, the pioneering but long underrecognized California Light and Space artist, recently took a break from installing her full-on retrospective here at SITE Santa Fe to recount one of the defining moments of her life, how around age 3 she had accompanied her family from their comfortable lodgings in Pasadena […]

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Catherine the Great Letter Up for Auction Shows Her Support for Inoculations

As smallpox outbreaks ravaged communities in the 18th century, one of the first people in Russia to embrace a precursor to vaccines was Catherine the Great, the empress famed for promoting the latest knowledge in the arts and sciences from her throne. Catherine’s support for an early form of inoculation is captured in a letter […]

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Looking at Surrealist Art in Our Own Surreal Age

“SURREALISM” IS ONE of those buzzwords, like “curate” or “groundbreaking,” that has been rendered effectively meaningless through overuse. In his 1924 “Manifesto of Surrealism,” the writer André Breton defined the term most succinctly as an attempt to resolve “these two states, dream and reality, which are seemingly so contradictory,” though its true origins came earlier, […]

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The Wandering Creativity of Sophie Taeuber-Arp

There’s an object in the Museum of Modern Art’s retrospective of the Swiss polymath Sophie Taeuber-Arp that’s so covetable I wanted to squeeze it. It dates from 1922, and takes the form of triangles that lock together into an allover pattern of blue and pink, brown and olive. Interrupting these abstract forms are five red […]

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Maya Lin’s Dismantled ‘Ghost Forest’ to Be Reborn as Boats

Maya Lin’s acclaimed “Ghost Forest” — her installation at Madison Square Park in New York — was being carved up, and the artist couldn’t have been happier: A group of teenagers had seen the harvesting of the wood on Nov. 19 and were sawing it on Monday, to make boats they plan to sail next […]

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Cultivating Art, Not Argument, at a Los Angeles Law Office

Much of what is made in law offices are tedious instruments of commerce: contracts, loan agreements, multipage memorandums. But this year, the law firm of Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan has given over space in its offices overlooking the Staples Center in downtown Los Angeles to the creation of art. On the sixth floor, works […]

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Art We Saw This Fall

Downtown Betsy Damon Through Nov. 21. La MaMa Galleria, 47 Great Jones Street, Manhattan. 212-505-2476; lamama.org. For the artist Betsy Damon, the 1970s were a time for rediscovery: During that decade, she found the feminist movement, left her husband and came out as a lesbian. She also began performing by covering herself in small bags […]

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A Collector Who Fills His Los Angeles Home With Carefully Sourced Clutter

IT HAD TAKEN several months of scouring flea markets before Jonathan Pessin finally found the weathered, hollow fiberglass Coke bottle that now stands sentry between the dining and kitchen areas of his loft in Los Angeles’s industrial Frogtown neighborhood. Reportedly produced by the Coca-Cola Company circa the 1970s or 1980s, the six-foot-tall sculpture was one […]

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Still Fighting Over the Turner Prize

Anish Kapoor, who won the award in 1991, said in an interview that he welcomed the Turner Prize’s political turn in the context of an art world “obsessed with money.” “I dare to think of it as an anticapitalist move in miniature,” Kapoor said, adding that all the nominees were “very clear that theirs is […]

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Art Basel Miami Beach Returns, Smaller but Ready to Party

MIAMI BEACH — It’s back. Canceled last year because of Covid-19, the annual Art Basel Miami Beach fair returns next week, unfolding throughout the area. Beginning on Tuesday with invitation-only hours, and open to the public Thursday through Saturday, it will feature 253 galleries exhibiting work inside the city’s Convention Center, as well as a […]

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Her Art Reads the Land in Deep Time

On a bright morning recently in Downtown Brooklyn, the artist Athena LaTocha stood by a construction site where pile drivers and earth-moving machines were excavating the foundation for a new skyscraper, and examined the scene with a kind of creative recognition. “This equipment is an extension of us, right? It’s an extension of the operator’s […]

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This Is Not René Magritte

Magritte and his brothers were hellraisers, Danchev explains, who showed all the local kids pornography, frequently yelled “Fire!,” and were rumored to have killed a donkey. In 1950, deep into his career, which began seriously in the 1920s with Le jockey perdu (“The Lost Jockey”), Magritte made a painting called Perspective II: Manet’s Balcony. It […]

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After 20 Years, Frank Stella Returns to Ground Zero

On a chilly Saturday morning last weekend, Frank Stella — 85, bespectacled, somewhat scruffy and holding a cane — was overseeing the installation of a sculpture called “Jasper’s Split Star” in the public plaza in front of 7 World Trade Center. “I’m not in such great shape,” he said more than once, but he still […]

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New York’s Midcentury Art Scene Springs to Life in ‘The Loft Generation’

They are a spiky, ambitious lot. We encounter the poet John Ashbery, to whom Schloss complained about being called “semiabstract” by a critic. “‘Isn’t all life semi?’” he replied consolingly. And the composer Elliott Carter, who sneered of folk music’s influence on modern urbans: “We are not shepherds. We are not coming out of the […]

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Toyin Ojih Odutola’s Mesmeric Alternate Universes

Conversations with the Nigerian American artist Toyin Ojih Odutola tend to mirror the curious mood evoked in her ballpoint, pencil and charcoal drawings. They are adventurous, textured with abrupt tangents and suffused with humor. You might begin by gushing about Michaela Coel’s 2020 HBO mini-series, “I May Destroy You,” only to end up contemplating the […]

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Cryptocurrency Group Loses Bid for Rare Copy of U.S. Constitution

A group of cryptocurrency fans lost a much-anticipated bid for a rare first printing of the U.S. Constitution at a Sotheby’s auction on Thursday. The group, ConstitutionDAO, conducted a frenzied, weeklong online crowdfunding campaign to place a bid on the artifact, one of only 13 copies known to exist. It had raised more than $40 […]

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Art Dealer Pleads Guilty to Wire Fraud Charges in $86 Million Scam

For years Inigo Philbrick, a young art dealer with a gallery in the Mayfair district in London, was a brash fixture within the world of postwar and contemporary art. Known for traveling on private jets, renting villas in Ibiza and wearing handmade Italian suits, he also was known to draw people into investing with him […]

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A Cherished New Orleans Restaurant, Upperline, Closes

NEW ORLEANS — JoAnn Clevenger was certain she would reopen Upperline, her New Orleans Creole restaurant, for most of the 18 months since the Covid-19 pandemic forced its closing. That confidence began cracking this past summer, as she began, with the help of a therapist, to confront her fear of losing a business she regarded […]

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Jennifer Packer: Painting as an Exercise in Tenderness

Portraiture is everywhere at the moment, in painting and photography alike, and some of the best of it has a specific aim: to make those who have been rendered invisible — on museum walls, in public culture, in political discourse — visible. This drive to honor and dignify people through representation comes at an ethical […]

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Gillian Wearing Is Spilling Your Secrets

Gillian Wearing, one of the Young British Artists (or Y.B.A.s) of the early 1990s, sailed to success on a tide of provocative confessional work. The confessions weren’t her own: Using masks, cue cards, and other distancing devices, she has been able to convince a stream of ordinary people to disgorge their most shameful secrets on […]

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Afrofuturist Room at the Met Redresses a Racial Trauma

More than a year after the racial reckoning, the Metropolitan Museum of Art has created one of its most thoughtful reparations projects yet. I do not mean its returning of some priceless artifacts back to West Africa, or its addressing of past racial wrongs with a restitution fund to support diversity in the arts, or […]

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The ‘Fearless Girl’ Statue Is in Limbo

When a bronze statue of a girl with fists on her hips first appeared at Bowling Green, a short distance from Wall Street, in 2017, her defiant expression captured the imagination of women looking for a symbol of economic empowerment. She became known as the “Fearless Girl” and found a new, though also temporary, home […]

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Looking for a Stolen Idol? Visit the Museum of the Manhattan D.A.

The evidence lockers at the Manhattan district attorney’s office often hold an array of items that figured in the crimes it prosecutes. Blunt instruments. Sacks of heroin. Wads of cash. The kinds of things that shouldn’t be dropped, but no one would have a heart attack if you did. And then there are the 2,281 […]

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