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VISUAL ARTS - September 1999

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  • JET PILOT GIVES $60 MILLION to Smithsonian for new annex for the Air and Space Museum. New annex will be four times the size of current A&S building on the National Mall
    Washington Post  9/30/99

  • The Politics of Restoration: The Vatican's St. Peter's gets a facelift, restoring some original color to the facade. Critics decry the job as a post-modern tilt,  "the desire to transform everything into a movie set." New York Times 9/30/99

  • LATEST BROOKLYN SALVOS: New York mayor accuses Brooklyn Museum of conspiring with auction house to raise the value of works in controversial show. And your point is...
    New York Times 9/30/99
    PLUS: Legal analysis of Brooklyn brouhaha. NYT 9/30/99

  • EYES WIDE SHUT: An ambitious plan to build a Lincoln Center-size cultural center for Boston's opera, ballet and Wang Center fizzles when a developer pulls the plug. 
    Boston Globe 9/29/99

  • FRESHMAN SURVEY: Rather than putting a century of American art in some sort of revealing context, the Whitney Museum's enormous project "The American Century: Art and Culture 1900-2000," is superficial  - nothing less than "the culmination of a century of suspender-snapping cultural nationalism" writes New York Magazine. New York Magazine 10/4/99

  • Guggenheim  proposes 45-story $850 million Frank Gehry building for a West Side pier. The new museum would contain large exhibition wings, a theater, a skating rink and other public amenities.
    New York Times 9/28/99
    [moved to paid archive]

  • Can't make it to St. Petersburg to see the Hermitage? IBM has spent two years and $2 million putting the museum online in high resolution. Now you can see 3000 of the museum's artworks with just a few clicks. Hartford Courant 9/28/99

  • NOT TO BE OUTDONE: Chicago looks to regain the "tallest building in the world" title. City council meets to consider the $500 million, 112-story building proposal designed by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill. It looks "like a pencil you could snap in two." Chicago Tribune 9/28/99

  • People who put graffiti on walls are usually shunned - even put in jail if caught. But a group of Philadelphia graffiti artists are touring the country to explain their artform. 
    San Antonio Express News 9/27/99 

  • LION ART: With a tenth anniversary show of the work of "Lion Kinger" Julie Taymor, Columbus' Wexner Center wonders if the gulf between art and entertainment exists at all.
    Cleveland Plain Dealer 9/26/99

  • FIRING CURATORS, hiring an architect to expand without any public discussion. Boston Museum of Fine Arts director Malcolm Rogers is remaking one of America's top cultural institutions. Many are asking - just what is he making it into? Boston Globe 9/26/99
    ALSO: MFA's School doesn't escape controversy either. Boston Globe 9/26/99

    The real thing: The authenticity of some of Van Gogh's paintings have been in doubt for years. This week Amsterdam's Van Gogh Museum announced a project to clear up any questions. AP wire 9/24/99

    CLOSE TO THE THRONE: The closest thing to a papal election in the British art world is deciding who will be the new president of the venerable Royal Academy. The job has grown in recent years - but so have the RA's fortunes and the intrigues behind getting the job. Financial Times 9/24/99

    South African art was largely invisible outside its home country during the years of apartheid. A new New York show puts together artists' work since apartheid ended - and demonstrates a nation struggling with its identity. New York Times 9/24/99

IT'S OFFICIAL: San Francisco Airport is accredited by the American Association of Museums for its art scattered throughout the terminals, making it the only airport museum so honored. 
San Francisco Chronicle 9/22/99

BACK TO THE LAB: Frank Gehry designs his first major laboratory as University of Cincinnati dedicates architect's $46 million Vontz Center for Molecular Studies. "We drank some wine while we worked on it," kidded Gehry. 
Chicago Tribune 9/23/99
ALSO: Local reaction. Cincinnati Enquirer 9/23/99 

ONLINE MONET? A Painting bought in a Nebraska junk shop for $225 and said to be a Monet is put up for auction on the internet. CBC 9/23/99

Extended stay: One of two Egon Schiele paintings looted by the Nazis and ordered returned to Austria earlier this week has been seized by supoena for US Customs. New York Times 9/23/99
Return to Lender: Two paintings by Egon Schiele, looted by the Nazis, kept in the US after they arrived in the United States from Austria two years ago for a show at the Museum of Modern Art, must be returned to Austria while their ownership is investigated. So says New York's highest court.
New York Times 9/22/99[moved to paid archives]
ALSO: New York art dealer to stand trial in France for buying painting looted by Nazis CBC 9/22/99
     ALSO: FOR SHOW OR FOR SHOCK: Critics debate work at Canada's National Gallery. CBC 9/23/99
AND: YBA (Young British Artists) show opens in San Francisco SF Examiner 9/23/99

PICTURE PERFECT: An 80-year-old London artist, once described as "the best kept secret in British art" has won England's most prestigious art prize. Prunella Clough tells the BBC that she has never won a prize before but believes in them in principle.
BBC 9/21/99

THE ASIANS ARE BACK reports the Art Newspaper. The latest round of auctions found a lot of Asian buyers. 9/2//99 

SOME OF THE ART IN THE BIG NEW AUSTRALIAN ABORIGINAL SHOW at San Francisco's Legion of Honor SF Examiner 9/22/99
PREVIOUSLY: FILLING IN THE DOTS: Are entrepreneurs making money off the art of Australian indigenous people without their consent?
Sydney Morning Herald 9/21/99 

Indian signs: As the world's biggest democracy heads for the polls, party symbols - bicycles, flowers, trees - provide crucial guide to India's 374 political parties.
National Post (Canada) 9/21/99

NEUROTIC REALISM: Contemporary art finally has a label. Charles Saatchi's second show on the subject confirms his tag on the new generation of Brits. Financial Times 9/21/99

TRIVIALIZATION OF ART: At the end of the 20th Century we've made the word meaningless complains Roger Kimball, editor of The New Criterion. 

A conversation with Jasper Johns as his first big show since the 1996 MOMA retrospective opens in San Francisco.
San Francisco Chronicle 9/19/99

WHEN HE DIED, PHILADELPHIA DEVELOPER JOHN MERRIAM left a Tiffany mosaic installed at the Curtis Center as part of his $119 million estate. No one will pay what the estate is demanding, so his estate wants to remove and sell it, setting off the biggest Philadelphia preservation crisis in years.
Philadelphia Inquirer, 9/19/99

WHO CHOOSES ART: Two star curators sit down with FEED Magazine to talk about the life of the peripatetic international curator and how the profession is changing. Feed Magazine 9/15/99

CULTURE CLASH: Berlin's Reischstag as remodelled by Sir Norman Foster, is more Blues Brothers than Beethoven. For Germany's political workers, moving the government from Bonn to Berlin means a change of style.
Financial Times 9/15/99

NERO'S MOTHER'S HOME: Workers digging a new road near the Vatican have discovered a frescoed wall that experts believe might be part of the emperor's mother's house.
CBC 9/14/99

THE ART NEWSPAPER wonders how much the dollar-value (English pound-value?) of a work of art affects the way we look at it. There's a little test at the end of the story.
The 9/12/99