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Transforming Art: A Look Back At What Mattered


Artspace -- which makes its money selling art online -- provided a provocative list a few weeks ago: Ten Alternative Art Spaces That Transformed American Art. The writer, Ian Wallace, and maybe others there (I don't know how Artspace works, editorially) specifically tried to consider the national picture, not just NYC, which is good. Just four of the spaces are in New York -- and you might guess their names: The Kitchen, Artists Space, Franklin Furnace and -- Food, which I didn't know. Then again, I wasn't living in New York the years that Food … [Read more...]

Who Would You Pick To Play Picasso? Plus, Best And Worst Artists’ Films


Most movies about art and artists leave a lot to be desired. We shall see how Picasso is treated in a movie about the making of Guernica, with Antonio Banderas starring as the artist. Banderas, who like Picasso is a Malaga native, said that he "turned down the chance at one point of playing Mr. Pablo, but the time has come in my life where I understand him better, and I am nearly at the age he was when those events happened, in 1937, when he was 55 or 56, and I'm getting close," according to Fox News Latino. Banderas is 54. Carlos Saura will … [Read more...]

Friendship Outs: Giant Gift Of Marin Watercolors Goes To…

Tree, Stonington, Deer Isle

Not a museum in Maine, where he painted for much of his last 40 years. Not a museum in New York, the center of the U.S. art world, or in Los Angeles, the west coast hub. Or New Jersey, Marin's birthplace. No, Norma B. Marin, the artist's daughter-in-law, recently donated nearly 300 watercolors, drawings and sketchbooks to the Arkansas Arts Center in Little Rock, according to the Kennebec Journal. ...Norma Marin’s gift to the Arkansas Arts Center was neither random nor the result of a falling out with Maine’s cultural institutions, as some … [Read more...]

Thelma Golden Adds New Duty To Director’s Role


As if museum directors don't have enough to do, Thelma Golden -- director and chief curator of the Studio Museum in Harlem -- has generously decided to be a consultant to artists. It is, of course, an attention-getter (and good for her on that score). Golden plans to hang up a consultant's shingle at the museum at an event on Feb. 9 for artists living or working in Harlem. For three hours, from noon to 3 p.m., Golden will hold 15-minute meetings with artists -- a bit like speed-dating -- where she will review their work and assess their … [Read more...]

Don’t Regret Missing “Civilisation” — Not Anymore


I never saw Civilisation. But I -- and you -- can easily access it now on a free website, along with 492 other documentaries about art, and hundreds more about science, history, war, Britain, America and so on. The site is called DocuWatch, and I have no idea how new or old it is. It was called to my attention today by a Facebook friend, and -- considering the snow that is paralyzing much of the Northeast corridor and some other parts of the country, it seemed like to perfect time to share it with RCA readers. Maybe you'll have Wednesday … [Read more...]

Waugh Fans: Head to California


If you like Evelyn Waugh -- and I do -- you may be pleased to learn that about 250 rare books and reference books and 135 letters and manuscripts by the great English prose satirist have been given to the Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens in San Marino, Ca.  (Unless, like me, you happen to live in New York, and wish they had gone to the Morgan Library,* which has some Waugh material, but has you will see below, not much by comparison with other institutions). But really, that wouldn't have happened: the Waugh trove … [Read more...]

Calder Heirs’ Fraud Case Against Dealer Perls Is Dismissed


I don't know about you, but I wasn't convinced by an article in The New York Times last October headlined Calder’s Heirs Accuse Trusted Dealer of Fraud. Apparently, neither was the court. On Christmas Eve, New York Supreme Court Justice Shirley Werner Kornreich made public an opinion that dismissed the $20 million suit by relatives of Alexander Calder (at right) against the late Klaus G. Perls, Calder's dealer from 1954 until 1976, when the artist died, and the Perls estate. According to a Dec. 26 article in Bloomberg Businessweek, “All these … [Read more...]

Breakthrough On Artists’ Resale Rights: Copyright Office Reverses Itself


This just in from Rep. Jerry Nadler's office: Today, the United States Copyright Office released a new report, updating and reversing its analysis of resale royalties for the first time since 1992. This new analysis is important to visual artists, including illustrators, painters, photographers, and sculptors, and the market for the sale of their work. Many of the Copyright Office’s recommendations will be reflected in the new version of Congressman Jerrold Nadler’s (NY-10) Equity for Visual Artists Act, which he plans to introduce early in … [Read more...]

A Building Named For An Artist, Not A Donor


Here's a refreshing development: Last week, the School of Art at the California Institute of Arts said that it was naming its new building of artists’ studios for John Baldessari, an artist. not for a major donor. I can't think of a parallel, but I'd like to hear of others if they do exist. Baldessari is both an alumnus (of Chouinard) and a long-time faculty member of CalArts. The school plans to raise money for the Baldessari building (pictured at right) with a benefit auction that will feature "more than 70 important works of art by … [Read more...]

Will These 100 Artists, Let Alone Works of Art, Define Us?


It takes a lot of nerve, and the willingness to be wrong, incredibly wrong, to write the book that Kelly Grovier published in the U.S. this month (and in September in the U.K.). It's called 100 Works of Art That Will Define Our Age, and it's a list of paintings, sculptures, drawings, installations, performances, and video pieces, made between 1989 and the present. Grovier is "an American poet, historian, and art critic," according to his Wikipedia page, and "contributes regularly to the Times Literary Supplement and is co-founder of the … [Read more...]

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