Art Industry News: Billionaire Art Collectors Sue HarperCollins Over Book Tying Them To Putin + More Stories



Art Industry News is a daily digest of the most important developments from the art world and the art market. Here’s what you need to know on Monday, May 3.


Jeff Koons and others remember Eli Broad – Heavyweights in the art world, including LACMA director Michael Govan, artist Shirin Neshat and architect Liz Diller, weighed in on the legacy of Eli Broad, who died at the age of 87 on Friday. Artist Mark Bradford remembers his “funny handshake” as Koons reflects on Broad’s role in institutionalizing his generation of artists. (Los Angeles Times)

Behind the Turbulence at LA MOCA – Klaus Biesenbach looks back on the eventful last year at LA MOCA, where dozens of layoffs and several high-level resignations have left tensions high. Former MOCA human resources director Carlos Viramontes, who resigned in February, said Biesenbach “didn’t want to be the leader” and “didn’t know how to handle others”. For his part, Biesenbach said: “We are coming out of a year of a lot of internal concentration, pause, reflection. I humbly do my best. The museum also announced the appointment of six new directors, including activist and advocate Frank J. Quintero. (New York Times)

Oligarch art collectors sue HarperCollins – Four Russian billionaires have filed separate lawsuits against HarperCollins for Putin’s people, a book published in 2020 which details the rise of Vladimir Putin and the powerful around him. Art collectors Roman Abramovich and Petr Aven are among those filing the complaint. HarperCollins said the book was an “authoritative, important and conscientiously sourced work” and that he would “vigorously” defend it and its author, journalist Catherine Belton. (Financial Time)

Russian artist goes on hunger strike – Russian artist Yulia Tsvetkova, accused of producing and distributing pornography, has gone on hunger strike to demand that her trial be made public. The feminist and pro-LGBTQ + artist has demanded that the courts also stop delaying proceedings in a case Amnesty International has called “Kafkaesque.” Tsvetkova was placed under house arrest pending trial. (Monopoly)


A Cy Twombly blackboard arrives at Sotheby’s – One of the artist’s famous “chalkboard” paintings – his most sought-after series – will highlight Sotheby’s Contemporary Art Evening Sale in New York this month. Untitled (Rome) (1970) once belonged to Charles Saatchi but remained in another private collection for 30 years. (Press release)

Yoshitomo Nara continues its auction – The installation of the Japanese artist Berlin barracks, room 1 (2007) sold for HK $ 120 million ($ 15.5 million) at Poly Auction Hong Kong’s modern and contemporary art sale on April 21, setting a record for an installation by Nara and the second highest price for a work by Nara ever sold at auction. (Ocula)


Opening of the new Pinault museum on May 22 – Collector François Pinault’s long-delayed private museum in Paris, the Bourse de Commerce-Collection Pinault, has a new opening date following the lifting of lockdown restrictions on cultural institutions in France. It will open on May 22. (BRONZER)

Street art photographer James Prigoff dies – The businessman-turned-photographer, who helped legitimize street art by documenting it in thousands of photos taken around the world, died on April 21 at his home in Sacramento. He was 93 years old. He and Henry Chalfant co-wrote Spray can art (1987), a seminal work in the field of street arts. (New York Times)


Ugo Rondinone’s “Seven Magic Mountains” get a makeover – The colorful stone sculpture, which has been a part of Instagram since arriving in the Nevada desert in 2016, will undergo a $ 100,000 paint restoration. The artwork was last restored in 2019, but the harsh environmental conditions require constant maintenance. (BRONZER)

New evidence suggests Hans Holbein left a clue in a royal portrait – Henry VIII’s court painter Hans Holbein seems to have left a revealing clue in a miniature portrait in the royal collection. It was previously believed that the keeper of the work was the king’s fifth wife, Catherine Howard. But new research reveals that the portrait was made on a playing card, the four of diamonds. Some believe that the choice may hint that the model is his Fourth wife, Anne de Clèves. (Guardian)

Protesters rally against Marilyn Monroe sculpture – Palm Springs residents protest against John Seward Johnson II installation project 26 foot tall sculpture Forever Marilyn in the city to attract tourism. During a rally against the artwork (which hosted a number of very colorful panels), Elizabeth Armstrong, former director of the Palm Springs Art Museum, said: “This artwork is misogyny under the guise of nostalgia. . (The arts journal)

People visit and photograph the Forever Marilyn statue of actress Marilyn Monroe in Palm Springs, California on August 4, 2012, a day before the 50th anniversary of Monroe’s mysterious death. Photo: Frédéric J. Brown / AFP via Getty Images.

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