“The gift all but closes the book on a collection that was started in the mid-1800s by Baron Nathaniel von Rothschild and his brother, Albert, and became entwined with 20th-century history.”
“With the recent loosening of US restrictions on trade with Cuba, prisoner exchanges and the promise of warmer relations to come, the two countries are closer than they have been for 50 years. But for those Cuban exiles in the US whose art was seized by the Cuban authorities in the 1960s, restitution of their property is still no closer. Cuba continues to reject the charge that the art in question was stolen, and has no mechanism for its return.”
“A handful of euro notes have circulated depicting ominous events like people fleeing buildings, hanging themselves, and writing bloody-looking graffiti that reads, ‘THE END IS NIGH.’ Playing off the typical euro note’s blandly interesting and politically approved historical architecture, this altered money strikes right to the heart of the crisis.”
“An employee of the State Hermitage Museum’s research library has been arrested in connection to the suspected theft of historic illustrations, engravings and photographs from its collection. The images were allegedly cut out from from books in the library and offered for sale at antiquarian bookshops.”
“It is a sad 20th birthday for the Musée Maillol in Paris, which shut its doors indefinitely this weekend. The museum has posted a message on its website that says the closure is due to planned renovation work, but there is more to the story. On 5 February, the company that manages the museum, Tecniarte, filed for bankruptcy.”
Hollyhock House’s curator: “Within the context of Wright’s career, it’s the first house of his second period — post Prairie-style period. It’s also his first house in Los Angeles. That means it’s the first time he gets to experiment with Japanese-inspired ideas of dissolving the walls between the exterior and the interior. Here, he’s got a climate he can do that in.”
“The rise of art as investment commodity for the ultra-wealthy does seem to distort the process of art-making and -selling for everyone else. A painting was sold last week for $300-million (U.S.), probably to the feudal sheikdom of Qatar; meanwhile across the board, artists’ real incomes are declining. It is rather confusing.”
Anne Hawley said “she has been quietly weighing the decision for two years now, as the museum completed fund-raising efforts that included $114 million for the museum’s sleek 2012 expansion, designed by renowned architect Renzo Piano, and an additional $50 million to fortify the museum’s endowment.”
“Irina Lebedeva, the director of the State Tretyakov Gallery in Moscow, has been dismissed from her position, Russia’s Ministry of Culture announced … Zelfira Tregulova, a former deputy director of the Kremlin Museum, has been confirmed as her successor. … A statement on the ministry’s website was bluntly critical of [Lebedeva’s] managerial skills.
Two separate lawsuits had been brought against the museum challenging its policy of charging a $25 “recommended” entrance fee, based on the Met’s original 1876 lease and a subsequent state law that provided city land and funds to establish the museum in return for free admission to the public during most of the week.