The First Art Newspaper on the Net   Established in 1996 Saturday, April 4, 2020

 
What New York looked like during the 1918 flu pandemic

In a photo provided by the National Archives, clerks in New York work with masks on during the 1918 flu pandemic. The Spanish flu raced through crowded tenements and neighborhoods, killing more than 20,000 New Yorkers. National Archives via The New York Times.

by Michael Wilson


NEW YORK (NYT NEWS SERVICE).- The wire arrived in New York City from an incoming ship at sea, announcing that 10 of its passengers and 11 crew members were ill. So a team of doctors and officials waited at a Brooklyn pier to greet the Norwegian vessel Bergensfjord and, with it, the first cases in the city of the deadliest pandemic in modern human history. It was Aug. 11, 1918. The ship docked, the sick were rushed to nearby hospitals, and the pier was placed under quarantine. Everything appeared to be under control. Then more sick arrived. The illness spread, racing through crowded neighborhoods and tenements. The numbers rose slowly at first, then soared as if swept in on a huge wave — a pattern eerily familiar 102 years later. It was the Spanish flu, and it would kill tens of millions of people worldwide, including 675,000 people in the United States. In New York City, more than 20,000 died, at a rate of 400 to 500 a day at its apex. It was a bracing death toll — and yet city leaders saw it as a sign of ... More


The Best Photos of the Day







Gropius Bau announces the digital launch of an exhibition by Lee Mingwei   Lacoste/Keane Gallery opens an exhibition of ceramics by Jeff Shapiro   Bill Withers, soul legend who sang 'Lean on Me' and 'Lovely Day,' dies at 81


Lee Mingwei, Fabric of Memory 2006–present. Mixed media interactive installation. Wooden platform, wooden boxes, fabric items. Installation view Lee Mingwei and His Relations, Mori Art Museum, Tokyo, 2014. Photo: Fuminari Yoshitsugu, courtesy: Mori Art Museum.

BERLIN.- Lee Mingwei’s installations and performances often operate both within the logic of material exchange and outside its limits by offering immaterial gifts: “I see my works also in this way: sharing the gift of song, the gift of contemplation or the gift of exchange with a stranger,” Lee Mingwei notes. Rooted in the space of intimate experiences and encounters with others, a key aspect of Lee’s work is for participants to be in the same space, where two or more people can share moments together, from sleeping to dining, from mending clothes to conversing with each other. He has now worked together with the Gropius Bau team to create an intimate experience for participants despite being physically separated. To accompany the launch of the ... More
 

Jeff Shapiro, Sculptural Vessel, Oribe Reborn. Stoneware, 21 x 12 x 7.5”.

CONCORD, MASS.- Lacoste/Keane Gallery announces Jeff Shapiro: A Creative Journey April 4 - 25, 2020, currently available online, the fifth solo exhibition of this internationally recognized ceramic artist at Lacoste Keane Gallery. In addition, a Video Walkthrough of the show will be available by April 4 on the gallery's website as well as the Artist Talk by April 5. The exhibition celebrates the artist’s long involvement with the Gallery including his curation of five major themed exhibitions, two of which were collaborations with the Museum of Fine Arts Boston and the Ceramic Department at Harvard University. This is the first time for Shapiro to show works from two new series: Oribe Reborn and Ice Flow. Seemingly different in surface color and effect, the two series have much in common. Both are fired first in the anagama tunnel kiln and then subsequently fired at least once more in other kilns with thick applications of glaze; Oribe for ... More
 

Bill Withers at Will Rogers Memorial Park in Beverly Hills, Calif., on Sept. 2, 2015. Jake Michaels/The New York Times.

by Andrew Marszal, with Maggy Donaldson


LOS ANGELES (AFP).- Bill Withers, the legendary performer who delivered timeless hits like "Ain't No Sunshine" with silky yet funkified vocals and came to define 1970s soul, has died. He was 81 years old. The Grammy-winning artist behind the beloved "Lean on Me" succumbed to heart complications, according to his family, which said it was "devastated" over the loss. "A solitary man with a heart driven to connect to the world at large, with his poetry and music, he spoke honestly to people and connected them to each other," they said. "In this difficult time, we pray his music offers comfort and entertainment as fans hold tight to loved ones." The artist's recording career lasted just 14 years -- he released his final album in 1985 -- but his hits that melded gritty southern blues with smooth ... More



Phoenix Art Museum appoints new Sybil Harrington Director and CEO   How Coronavirus is changing the art & collectables auction market   Online-only sale features paintings of women across Southeast Asian cultures


Tim Rodgers is currently Director of The Wolfsonian–Florida International University (FIU) in Miami. Photo: Lynton Gardiner.

PHOENIX, AZ.- Phoenix Art Museum announced today that it has appointed Timothy R. Rodgers, PhD, to serve as the Museum’s Sybil Harrington Director and CEO. Rodgers, who is currently Director of The Wolfsonian–Florida International University (FIU) in Miami, will assume his role at PhxArt, the leading and largest art museum in the southwestern United States, after July 1, 2020. Rodgers has deep roots in Arizona; prior to taking the helm of The Wolfsonian–FIU, Rodgers served for six years as Director of the Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art and Vice President of the Scottsdale Cultural Council. He was selected following a national search led by a committee appointed by the Museum’s Board of Trustees and which included current and past Trustees and community leaders. Rodgers ... More
 

Pontus Silfverstolpe, one of the two Swedish founders of the business, says that it is clear that the impact of the Covid 19 virus is having a transforming, and speeding up effect on the online art auction industry.

LONDON.- Barnebys, the biggest online search engine for art and collectables for sale at auction is logging daily changes imposed by the impact of the Coronavirus. Pontus Silfverstolpe, one of the two Swedish founders of the business, says that it is clear that the impact of the Covid 19 virus is having a transforming, and speeding up effect on the online art auction industry. He says: “If this virus had hit us 20 years ago it would have been game over for the industry which relied absolutely on traditional face to face auctions with a small amount of telephone bidding. But thanks to the arrival of the internet and online technology and many agile auction houses who saw early on the opportunities provided in the online sphere, the industry will ... More
 

Nguyen Trung (Vietnamese, born 1940) Lady, 2008. Oil on canvas. Photo: Bonhams.

HONG KONG.- Bonhams’ online-only fine Southeast Asian arts sale – Ritual + Culture Online – will be open for bidding between 3 and 22 April 2020. The sale features more than thirty 20th century paintings, celebrating the diverse cultures and distinctive rituals in Southeast Asian countries including Indonesia, Vietnam and Burma. Among the highlights is a curated group of paintings depicting the mesmerising beauty of women in Southeast Asia, as well as the crucial roles they play in society. This group of works is led by Hanoi (pictured front) by French artist Alix Aymé, who had travelled in and painted extensively in Asia. The painting features a classic street scene with a Vietnamese mother strolling along a path, her baby nestled by her hips, as the city Hanoi – depicted by Aymé as a verdant sub-tropical paradise – comes into spring. C ... More



Controversial Soviet-era statue removed in Prague   French orchestra plays on through virus confinement   Elite pulp artists celebrated in Heritage illustration art auction


Workers load on a truck the statue of Soviet general and Marshal of the Soviet Union Ivan Stepanovic Konev as it is made ready for removal on April 3, 2020 in Prague. Michal Cizek / AFP.

PRAGUE (AFP).- Prague authorities on Friday said they had removed a controversial Soviet-era statue, despite protests from Moscow, to make way for a World War II memorial. The Russian embassy on Friday protested the removal of the bronze statue of Soviet general Ivan Konev, terming it an "unfriendly" act of "vandalism by unhinged municipal representatives." While Konev is regarded as a hero in Russia, many Czechs see him as a symbol of Soviet-era oppression. He led Red Army troops that liberated Prague from the Nazis in 1945, but he was also in charge of Operation Whirlwind, which crushed the anti-Soviet Hungarian Uprising of 1956. Prague district 6 mayor Ondrej Kolar told the Czech CTK news agency that Konev's statue would be placed in a "museum dedicated to the history of the 20th century in Czechoslovakia." Pro-Russian Czech President ... More
 

It can be seen here

PARIS (AFP).- A French orchestra has found a way around the coronavirus lockdown to record a 51-instrument rendition of Ravel's Bolero. One by one. Alone in their kitchens, lounges or dining rooms, individual Orchestre national de France (ONF) musicians played as their mobile phones recorded their parts in Maurice Ravel's thrilling orchestral score. Then the magic: a technician jigsawed the bits together into a video mosaic to create a near flawless, combined performance of woodwinds, brass, percussion and strings. "I would never have imagined synchronising the sound of instruments not playing together," said Dimitri Scapolan, a Radio France video editor in charge of the project. The ONF is one of two orchestras of Radio France. "When I overlapped all the pieces recorded by the cellphones on my computer, to my great astonishment, everyone was in perfect harmony," he told AFP. "All I had to do was to adjust the levels a bit and add some resonance -- it mixed itself. It was a pleasure." ... More
 

Patrick Nagel (American, 1945-1984), Untitled, 1982. Acrylic on canvas, 40 x 30 inches. Estimate: $60,000 - $80,000.

DALLAS, TX.- An extraordinary selection of artwork used on pulp magazine covers, from artists like Virgil Finlay, Margaret Brundage, Hugh Joseph Ward and Norman Saunders, are among the top attractions in Heritage Auctions’ Illustration Art Auction April 24 in Dallas, Texas. The 414-lot sale also will include artwork by legendary pin-up artists, including Patrick Nagel, Gil Elvgren and Alberto Vargas, as well as an impressive array from the Golden Age of Illustration Art. “Pulp art is enormously popular right now,” Heritage Auctions Vice President Todd Hignite said. “This sale offers a very strong selection from some of the most popular and important Pulp artists, some classic images from the genre. The range of images offers elite collections for Pulp collectors of all levels.” The auction includes three Weird Tales Magazine covers: Virgil Finlay The Thief of Forthe, Weird Tales magazine cover, July 1937 (estimate: $20,000-30, ... More



Steidl publishes 'Hans Danuser: Darkrooms of Photography'   Tate launches new video tours of major exhibitions   Zimmerli Art Museum offers new tools for visitors with sensory-related disorders


Cooling Tower Basin. Photographed in atomic power plants, reactor research facilities, and in interim storage facilities for highly radioactive waste.

NEW YORK, NY.- This book presents an overview of the work of Swiss photographer Hans Danuser over the last 35 years and places it in wider artistic and social contexts. At the end of the 1970s Danuser substantially contributed to the “reinvention” of photography as an artistic medium and shaped its development through the myriad possibilities of the analogue darkroom. In 1980 Danuser began his breakthrough cycle “IN VIVO,” whose 93 black-and-white photos address taboos then prevailing in the research and power centers of industrial society in Europe and the USA prior to the fall of the Berlin Wall, the break-up of power blocs and the rise of globalization. Topics that influence and transform society have been the focus of Danuser’s subsequent large-format, and often site-specific installation works. With an emphasis on content and media-specific research, Danuser’s photos furth ... More
 

Free online tour of Andy Warhol at Tate Modern launches on 6 April. © Tate Photography.

LONDON.- Tate today announces the release of two new films offering audiences the chance to step inside the gallery’s latest exhibitions and explore remarkable works of art from the comfort of their own home. Published on Tate’s website and YouTube channel this month, viewers around the world can enjoy free curator-led video tours of the much-anticipated Andy Warhol and Aubrey Beardsley exhibitions. Specially recorded following the closure of Tate’s galleries due to coronavirus, but before current restrictions were implemented, the films offer unique perspectives from Tate experts as they take visitors through the empty galleries, allowing special access to major art works on loan from public and private collections across the globe. Available to view online from Monday 6 April, the Tate Modern team of Gregor Muir, Director of Tate’s Collection of International Art, and Fiontán Moran, Assistant Curator, share behind-the-scenes insights into the gallery’s recently opened ... More
 

Zimmerli Art Museum at Rutgers University is certified sensory inclusive.

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ.- The Zimmerli Art Museum at Rutgers University-New Brunswick is the first art museum in New Jersey to offer specialized tools to help visitors on the autism spectrum enjoy their visit without stressful sensory overload. The museum is collaborating with KultureCity, a nonprofit that has also worked with MetLife Stadium, to offer the training and materials needed to provide a more positive experience for those with autism, PTSD or other conditions that may cause sensory overload. Free sensory inclusive bags available to use during visits include fidget tools (handheld objects that can be squeezed and manipulated to help focus the user’s sense of touch), cue cards that people with verbal impairments can use to communicate their needs and moods, noise-cancelling headphones and weighted lap pads to help direct the user’s feeling of their center of gravity. “A common misperception is that autism is just a beha ... More



Quote
It has bothered me all my life that I do not paint like everybody else. Henri Matisse

More News
World's largest jazz festival in Montreal cancelled due to pandemic
MONTREAL (AFP).- This year's Montreal Jazz Festival, the world's largest, and other popular summer jamborees in Canada's francophone metropolis were cancelled Friday due to the COVID-19 pandemic, organizers announced. It had been scheduled to start on June 25. "This decision, which was made with our private partners and the government, was not an easy one, but it had become necessary in order to protect the public, the artists and our employees," the Jazz Festival's general manager Jacques Primeau said in a statement. The Francos de Montreal music festival, which is put on by the same group and was scheduled for June 12, was also cancelled, he said. The pair of summer festivals attract hundreds of thousands of visitors each year to Canada's second-largest city. Organizers of the hugely popular Just for Laughs Festival, usually ... More

Harriet Glickman, who pushed 'Peanuts' to add an African American character, dies at 93
NEW YORK (NYT NEWS SERVICE).- Harriet Glickman, who in 1968 persuaded Charles M. Schulz, the creator of “Peanuts,” to add an African American character to his roster of Charlie Brown, Snoopy and the rest of the gang, died March 27 at her home in Sherman Oaks, California. She was 93. Her daughter, Katherine Moore-MacMillan, said the cause was complications of myelodysplastic syndrome. Glickman was a former schoolteacher in California when Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated in 1968, shocking the nation and heightening her concern about what she saw as toxic racism that permeated society. She began thinking of ways the mass media shaped the unconscious biases of America’s children, she later wrote, and “felt that something could be done through our comic strips.” She wrote to several cartoonists, including ... More

Program goes virtual with online drawing tutorials from Australian artists
MELBOURNE.- The National Gallery of Victoria launched a new four-part virtual series of its popular Drop-by Drawing program. This virtual iteration of the program invites audiences to watch a video tutorial of a Drop-by Drawing class, which features tips and tricks on how to draw from some of Victoria’s most engaging contemporary artists. The series features Victorian artists Minna Gilligan, Lily Mae Martin and Kenny Pittock giving a step-by-step guide on how to draw, whilst taking inspiration from some of their favourite artworks in the NGV Collection. Tony Ellwood AM, Director, NGV said: “Our Drop-by Drawing program is one of the NGV’s much-loved programs where our visitors can hone their drawing skills in the setting of the wonderful NGV Collection. We know drawing is a very mindful and therapeutic activity, and during this time we ... More

Quality collections will be featured in Jeffrey S. Evans & Associates auction
MT. CRAWFORD, VA.- The Jeffrey S. Evans & Associates Spring Fine & Decorative Arts Auction contains a wide selection of desirable material and will include everything from art glass and rare music boxes to miniature lighting and estate jewelry. The large auction will take place over three days, Thursday, April 23, 2020; Friday, April 24, 2020; and Saturday, April 25, 2020, with absentee, phone, and live internet bidding available. Thursday’s session, Day One, beginning at 9:30 am, will start the weekend off with a bang and features the collection of the late Ellen D. Teller, Ann Arbor, MI; material from the Thomas Bredehoft Collection, Saint Louisville, OH; the Harold Smalley Collection, Osterville, MA; and the Ellen O’Brien Collection, Sarasota, FL; the estate of Commander Buryl and Nelwyn Kay, McLean, VA; private collections from Florida ... More

Japan telework orchestra strikes a chord in coronavirus gloom
TOKYO (AFP).- The members of the New Japan Philharmonic orchestra tune up for their latest recital, more than 60 musicians ranging from trombonists to violinists and percussionists -- but this is no ordinary performance. In a musical twist on the telework trend forced on the world by the coronavirus pandemic, they appear in tiny blocks on screen, recording their parts separately before technology brings them together in joyous harmony. The on-screen mosaic shows some musicians performing in their tiny apartments, others playing their instruments outside under a bright blue sky. In scenes familiar to millions working from home globally, one veteran violinist has two toddlers -- apparently his grandchildren -- larking about in the corner. And a trombone player has a pet bird perched next to him as the orchestra belts out not Beethoven or Mozart ... More

Ken Shimura, comedian whose sketches delighted Japan, dies at 70
NEW YORK (NYT NEWS SERVICE).- Ken Shimura could make people laugh just by tweaking a traditional dance, mangling an English lesson or acting like a shogun fool. Shimura, a beloved comedian in Japan, died Sunday at a hospital in Tokyo, the Izawa Office, which represented him, said. He was 70. His slapstick humor, physical comedy and naive persona made him a household name in Japan for nearly five decades. Generations of children grew up watching his comedy skits and dance routines. And before there was “America’s Funniest Home Videos,” Shimura introduced the concept of broadcasting footage contributed by viewers on the variety show “Kato-Chan Ken-Chan Gokigen TV,” which aired for six years on Saturday nights on TBS, one of Japan’s main television networks. Shimura started feeling sick on March 17 and developed ... More

Never given a close look to Hitchcock? Start here
NEW YORK (NYT NEWS SERVICE).- Alfred Hitchcock may seem like an odd choice for this column, which purports to recommend entry points for movie genres you don’t get or directors who seem difficult. Hitchcock, by contrast, could easily be considered the most famous director who ever lived. His run from 1958 to 1963 alone — “Vertigo,” “North by Northwest,” “Psycho,” “The Birds” — consists exclusively of films that almost everyone knows. Yet Hitchcock made more than 50 features, and watching and returning to them is a lifelong pursuit. Most of his films are available to stream in some form or other. One of Hitchcock’s most daring experiments, “Rope” (1948), is a great gateway movie because, by breaking certain rules, it teaches you a lot about how films are made. (Rent or buy it on Amazon, FandangoNow, iTunes and YouTube). ... More

Technology issues, social distancing can't stop a fun auction
BOONTON, NJ.- Millea Bros. didn’t design its March 26-27 Fringe! and ABC Estate Finds auctions to be high-value sales. Instead, they were meant to be eclectic and unique with a wide appeal, especially to young and entry-level collectors. While the 800+ discovery lots were all modestly valued, on the whole, they did very well with many items tripling or more their high estimates, and overall results exceeding the high estimate by over 15%, to earn an auction total of $335,000. On a normal day, that would be the end of the story. The larger story perhaps, in these not normal times, were the obstacles and logistics the Covid-19 pandemic presented to conducting a sale, along with the rise of volume of people now sheltering at home and viewing auctions as a form of Entertainment. Anyone who is used to attending Mark and Michael Millea’s auctions ... More

Four fast Fords add to the fun & interest of H&H Classics online-only auction
LONDON.- For all Ford fans the next H&H Classics sale on April 29th offers a feast with no fewer than four Fast Fords to choose from. “If you are a fan of the model of Mustang immortalised by Steve McQueen's Lieutenant Frank Bullitt and one of the most memorable car chases in cinema history, then you'll probably be blown away by 'YTA 488E', which is without question the best 390 GT we have ever seen”, says Damian Jones, Head of Sales for H&H Classics. “We understand the nut and bolt restoration it has been treated to accounted for some 3,800 man hours, and we can well believe it - apparently £25,000 was invested in the paint alone. According to the accompanying Marti report, this matching numbers Fast Ford was built at the company's Metuchen plant on July 13, 1967 where it was sprayed in Burnt Amber and equipped with the standard Black ... More

Phillips embarks on 5th anniversary in Asia with 'Made in Hong Kong' campaign
HONG KONG.- This spring, Phillips presents ‘Made in Hong Kong’, a new content series to mark the 5th anniversary of the auction house in Asia. This two-episode series follows Eric So, a Hong Kong-based multimedia artist, and Charlotte Raybaud, Head of Evening Sale, 20th Century & Contemporary Art for Phillips Hong Kong, as they explore how the city has transformed into a vibrant international centre for arts and culture. ‘Made in Hong Kong’ examines the transformation of designer toys and figures that have become collectible classics and permeated the contemporary art market in recent years. The series recalls the heyday of the city’s toy-manufacturing industry between the 1960s and 1980s, when Hong Kong was the world’s largest toy production centre and reveals its evolution from manufacturing hub to Asia’s leading art destination. In the ... More

The Met launches new online programming and social media initiatives
NEW YORK, NY.- The Metropolitan Museum of Art announced today a lineup of newly developed content to complement its existing selection of online materials, offering audiences at home the opportunity to engage with the Museum while it is temporarily closed. #MetAnywhere already features videos, 360-degree tours, publications, and educational resources, as well as popular activities like #MetSketch on the Museum's social media channels. The new content includes live and interactive programming, performances, and conversations with curators, educators, and artists, and will provide an opportunity for the global digital community to share important stories and the power of art and culture through the lens of The Met collection. Max Hollein, Director of The Met, commented: "The Museum's mission is to connect people, wherever ... More







The EY Exhibition: Van Gogh and Britain | Tate


 



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Flashback
On a day like today, French painter and poet Maurice de Vlaminck was born
April 04, 1876. Maurice de Vlaminck (4 April 1876 - 11 October 1958) was a French painter. Along with André Derain and Henri Matisse he is considered one of the principal figures in the Fauve movement, a group of modern artists who from 1904 to 1908 were united in their use of intense colour. In this image: CaixaForum Barcelona, “la Caixa” Community Projects exhibited in 2009 "Maurice de Vlaminck, a Fauve Instinct: Paintings from 1900 to 1915".



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