The First Art Newspaper on the Net    Established in 1996 Sunday, October 24, 2021

At FIAC Art Fair, ambitions are high. Can sales keep pace?

Visitors look at artworks presented by the "Peres Projects" gallery during the Contemporary Art International Fair (FIAC), at the temporary Grand Palais in Paris on October 21, 2021. The French International Contemporary Art Fair (FIAC), which took place virtually in March due to the pandemic, returns to real life and online until October 24, accompanied by its little sister dedicated to Asia: "Asia Now". Christophe ARCHAMBAULT / AFP.

by Scott Reyburn

PARIS.- It’s hard to escape the sense of rivalry between France and its cross-channel neighbor, from the Battle of Agincourt through the Napoleonic wars to President Charles de Gaulle blocking Britain’s entry into the European Economic Community. And now that Britain has left the European Union, France is looking to gain an economic edge over its old foe. London’s ebbing dominance of the European art trade is one area of opportunity. “Paris is thinking it can claim once again that it’s the capital,” Lithuanian artist Augustas Serapinas said Monday, standing beside a sculpture he had constructed in the Tuileries Garden for the 47th annual edition of the FIAC fair of contemporary and modern art. Like last week’s Frieze fairs in London, FIAC was returning to an in-person format after a pandemic-enforced year of online equivalents. Did the sculptor think Paris could once again return to its glory days as a leading art market hub, as it was in the 1950s? “I d ... More

The Best Photos of the Day

A tour of Italy, and a century of stunning cars   kamel mennour opens an exhibition of works by Alicja Kwade   "Doug Aitken: New Era" opens at the Museum of Contemporary Art Australia

A 1950 Alfetta 158 at Alfa Romeo’s museum near Milan. The car won 47 Grand Prix races in the hands of Nino Farina and Juan Manuel Fangio. Stephen Williams via The New York Times.

by Stephen Williams

MILAN.- Quickly now: What single word comes to mind when the subject of Italian automobile museums comes up at a cocktail party? Ferrari. Of course. Or perhaps Maserati. Or maybe Lamborghini. But for the next thousand words or so, put aside those knee-jerk responses. For now, let’s think out of the auto museum box. During a recent visit to the Italian north, I shuttled between Milan and Turin in search of some automotive greatness beyond what is usually found on tourists’ agendas. Find it I did, at the “other” museums, one celebrating the history of Alfa Romeo and the second at the home of Fiat in the true heartland of the Italian auto industry for more than a century. You want red cars? Alfa has rosso in more than a few stunning shades. Technology? Start with ... More

Alicja Kwade. Photo: Archives kamel mennour.

PARIS.- Time, space and the concept of reality are notions inseparably linked to Alicja Kwade's universe, and this since she began a career characterised by the disposition of elements either simple or lending themselves to greater complexities: laid out on the floor, suspended from the ceiling, embracing a third dimension or starkly on show, hanging on the wall. What these components offer the eye is a physical reality generated by a process of transmutation. A sort of alchemy nonetheless free of any mystical ambitions. Anxious to maintain a link with prosaic things, Kwade strives for a visible traceability with the objects or motifs, often close to hand, as well as with the materials (like gold, lead, copper) on which she has set her sights. Time and space are likewise summoned up in Kwade's sculptures, which combine improbable funnels with interlocking geometrical modules. One might be tempted to establish a shared genealogy for the two, except that their interlocking reveals no prior histo ... More

Doug Aitken, Earthwork: Aperture series 2019. Installation view, Museum of Contemporary Art Australia, Sydney, 2021, chromogenic transparency on acrylic in aluminium lightbox with LEDs. Image courtesy the artist; Museum of Contemporary Art Australia, Sydney; 303 Gallery, New York; Galerie Eva Presenhuber, Zurich; Victoria Miro Gallery, London; and Regen Projects, Los Angeles. Photo: Dan Boud.

SYDNEY.- American artist Doug Aitken’s first major solo exhibition in the southern hemisphere, Doug Aitken: New Era, opened at the Museum of Contemporary Art Australia, as part of the 2021-22 Sydney International Art Series. Exclusive to Sydney, this comprehensive survey exhibition brings together key works from the late 1990s to recent multi-screen video installations. American artist Doug Aitken is internationally recognised for his ambitious practice that encompasses installations, sculptures, photographs and vast, multi-screen environments that envelop viewers within a kaleidoscope of moving imagery and sound. Based in Los Angeles, he has ... More

The exceptional vas diatretum at Autun contained gray amber   Collect a piece of early American history at Freeman's American Furniture, Folk and Decorative Arts auction   Christie's New York presents: Artwork to benefit LAXART

This extremely rare and precious product is used for its aromatic and medicinal properties. The age of the vase makes this grey amber the earliest archaeological evidence for the use of this substance. Photo: © Hamid Azmoun, Inrap.

PARIS.- In 2020, Inrap, in collaboration with the Autun city Archaeology Service (Drac Bourgogne-Franche-Comté), excavated part of the necropolis located near the former Paleochristian church of Saint-Pierre-l'Estrier. A stone sarcophagus yielded a remarkable cage cup, or "diatretic vase," dated to the 4th century CE. Complete but very fragmentary, it was entrusted to the Römisch-Germanisches Zentralmuseum in Mayence (Germany). Following its restoration and study, this exceptional piece has returned to Autun. Only a few of the rare known diatreta were found in archaeological context. These Roman glass art masterpieces sculpted from a block of glass required several months of work by an experienced glass worker. As prestige objects, such vases were offered to ... More

A rare 13-Star American National Flag with 21 “Scattered Stars” (Lot 4; estimate: $25,000-50,000).

PHILADELPHIA, PA.- Freeman’s American Furniture, Folk and Decorative Arts auction, beginning at 11am on Wednesday, November 10, features a fine selection of American silver, furniture, paintings, flags, and objects illustrating the customs, politics, and design sensibilities of early America, and also includes the American National Flag Collection of Jeffrey Kenneth Kohn, MD. Lynda Cain, Head of Department, said, “This is a unique opportunity for flag collectors and I am delighted to be offering this collection this November.” With the American National Flag Collection of Jeffrey Kenneth Kohn, MD, Freeman’s continues its excellent track record of presenting single-owner collections at auction. A foremost expert and dealer of the American National Flag, Kohn has been amassing his collection for over 35 years; Freeman’s presents such highlights as a rare Civil War–era “Shooting Star” pattern flag commemorat ... More

Arthur Jafa (b. 1960), HA Crow 20A, 2018. Epson fine art print face-mounted to Diasec acrylic on aluminum panel, 88.1/2 x 57.1/2 in. (224.8 x 146.1 cm.) Executed in 2018. Estimate: $30,000 – 50,000. © Christie's Images Ltd 2021.

NEW YORK, NY.- Christie’s will offer a group of artworks sold to benefit non-profit contemporary art organization LAXART in the Post-War and Contemporary Art Day Sale taking place on 12 November 2021 at Rockefeller Center in New York City. Leading the grouping is Glenn Ligon’s Stranger Study #31, 2021 (estimate: $300,000 – 500,000). The group also includes works by contemporary stars Jonas Wood, Barbara Kruger, Arthur Jafa, Jacqueline Humphries, and Christina Quarles. Two of the works, Monstera Still Life with Fruit and Box by Jonas Wood and Up ‘N Out by Christina Quarles, will be on view at Christie’s Los Angeles from 20 – 23 October. All six works will be on view at Christie’s New York from 30 October – 11 November ahead of the sale. In total, the group is ... More

Pictures for all predilections in forthcoming British and Continental Pictures and Prints auction   Elizabeth Jaeger presents a new series of black ceramic vessels at Jack Hanley Gallery   "Companion Species" at the Chazen Museum of Art embraces connections between Native and non-Native artists

John Bratby RA (1928 - 1992), The Spirit of Venice: St Mark's with Erroneous Geography. Oil on canvas. Estimate: £2,500 - £3,500.

LONDON.- From 18th century artist Edmund Becker's delicate depiction of trees in pen and ink (estimate: £80 - £120), to 20th century painter John Bratby’s bold brush strokes of a Venetian vista (estimate: £2,500 - £3,500), there are pictures to appeal to most palates (and purses) in the forthcoming auction of over 250 lots. Among the highlights are a small group of dashing British Military portraits including a spirited depiction of E.D. Brisco Esq, 1st Captain of the Provisional Cavalry of the West Riding of Yorkshire, 2nd Regiment and his horse by Philip Reinagle (1749-1833), estimated at £4,000 - £6,000. Work by established artists from the 19th century include a Pair of Country Views by Frederick Waters Watts, a Farmyard by William Henry Hunt, Clouds by the 'Ancient' George Richmond, and a pair of Female Nudes by William Edward Frost all with ... More

Installation view. Photo: Brad Farewell. Courtesy of the artist and Jack Hanley Gallery.

NEW YORK, NY.- Jack Hanley Gallery is presenting Elizabeth Jaeger’s fifth solo exhibition with the gallery. In a new series of black ceramic vessels, large peepholes reveal worlds of miniature scenes placed inside. Resting on handmade powder-coated wire cages, the depicted scenes and figures range in settings and size: a dormitory with neatly arranged beds, a meeting of individuals seated in a circle, someone lying on their stomach reading a book or a single cat lounging in the safety of the hole. From a bird’s eye view, the viewer becomes witness to intimate scenes withheld from them in everyday life. Dream-like, as if invisibly hovering above the scenery, their perspective complements the fantastical scales of hidden worlds, secretly tucked away from plain sight. Without a direct connection at first glance - a couple embraced in bed or sheep grazing in the field, solitary or among others in the office - the sentiment that ... More

Kristen Cliffel (American, born 1967), It Seemed Like A Good Idea At The Time, 2012. Low-fire clay, glaze, lustre, polychromed hand-carved wood, 27 × 14 × 13 in.

MADISON, WIS.- This fall the Chazen Museum of Art at the University of Wisconsin-Madison presents Companion Species, an insightful and timely exhibition that places works of art from Native and non-Native artists in conversation with each other. Its centerpiece is Marie Watt’s vibrant textile “Companion Species (Speech Bubble)” of 2019, in which community members stitched words such as “mother,” “we” and “ancestor” onto pieces of reclaimed red wool blankets. Through an innovative and frequently playful installation of works from 200 B.C.E. to the present day, the exhibition considers the importance of community, reciprocity and fellowship with animals and nature. It is on view at the Chazen through Dec. 30, 2021. “Companion Species asks us to reexamine our connectedness to our neighbors and to our environment ... More

Rambo, Romeo, Rome: His posters capture films' essential moments   Peter Scolari, 'Newhart' and 'Girls' actor, is dead at 66   How Zimmer conjured the otherworldly sounds of 'Dune'

Renato Casaro, whose hand-drawn art for movie posters has hooked audiences around the world since the 1950s, at home with one of his works, “The Touch,” in Treviso, Italy, Oct. 5, 2021. Alessandro Grassani/The New York Times.

by Elisabetta Povoledo

TREVISO.- Renato Casaro was taking a trip down memory lane, a long journey in a career that extends from the 1950s, when Rome was known as Hollywood on the Tiber, to the last decade, when Quentin Tarantino asked for his help on the 2019 film “Once Upon a Time … in Hollywood.” “I constantly adapted,” said Casaro, who is a few days short of his 86th birthday. “That’s why I kept working when others stopped.” Over more than six decades, his hand-drawn movie posters have hooked audiences into theaters, acting as abridged portends of the delights to come. “The important thing was to capture the essential: that moment, that glance, that attitude, that movement that says everything and condenses the entire story. That’s the hard part,” Casaro said. “You can’t cheat. You can’t promise something that isn’t there.” The ... More

Peter Scolari as Yogi Berra in the play "Bronx Bombers" at the Circle in the Square Theater in New York, Jan. 9, 2014. Sara Krulwich/The New York Times.

by Neil Genzlinger

NEW YORK, NY.- Peter Scolari, a familiar face on “Bosom Buddies,” “Newhart,” “Girls” and other television shows, and in Broadway, off-Broadway and regional theater productions, died Friday in the New York City borough of Manhattan. He was 66. His management company, Wright Entertainment, said the cause was cancer. Scolari had done some stage work but was easing into television when he was cast alongside Tom Hanks in 1980 as one of the two principal characters on “Bosom Buddies,” an ABC comedy about two men who pretend to be women so they can live in a low-cost, all-female apartment complex. The show, Hanks’ first prominent assignment, lasted only 37 episodes, but it has gained a sort of kitschy cachet over the years thanks to some witty touches in the scripts and the subsequent careers of the two stars. “A lot of television was about bosoms in 1980, when ‘Buddies’ began its two-year run,” Susan Stewart wrote in The ... More

The composer Hans Zimmer in New York, Oct. 8, 2021. For “Dune,” the composer worked with a far-flung “band” of collaborators who sung, scraped metal, invented instruments and more for the score. Bryan Derballa/The New York Times.

by Darryn King

NEW YORK, NY.- When composer Hans Zimmer was approached to score “Dune,” the new movie adaptation of Frank Herbert’s epic sci-fi novel, he knew one thing absolutely: It would not sound like “Star Wars.” Musically, those films drew on influences that ranged from Holst and Stravinsky to classic movie scores of the ’30s and ’40s. Even the rollicking tune performed by the bug-eyed creatures in the Cantina was inspired by Benny Goodman. For “Dune,” by contrast, Zimmer wanted to conjure sounds that nobody had ever heard before. “I felt like there was a freedom to get away from a Western orchestra,” he said recently, speaking in the Warner Bros. offices overlooking Hudson Yards in Manhattan. “I can spend days making up sounds.” The resulting soundtrack might be one of Zimmer’s most unorthodox and most provocative. Along with synthesizers, ... More

Basel is contemporary art's most influential trade fair. Newsweek.

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Why New York City is trying to preserve a crumbling church
NEW YORK, NY.- Grace Congregational Church does not have many members these days, but the dozen or so people who do worship at the century-old building on a quiet Harlem side street like to get there early. They climb the crumbling steps into the humble brick church and find seats on the aging wooden pews, where sheets of peeling paint hang like curtains from the water-damaged ceiling above their heads. Grace Church has been a constant in their lives. It is a place where they have gotten married, christened their children, and where some of them were christened as children themselves. But as the congregation has shrunk and the building has fallen into disrepair, members have dreamed up a vision for their future: a modern complex that combines a new church with dozens of affordable housing units. “Churches just don’t survive anymore ... More

What a rare, live 'A Love Supreme' reveals about John Coltrane
NEW YORK, NY.- When John Coltrane released “A Love Supreme” in early 1965, fans recognized it as a masterwork practically on first listen. Best-of-the-year accolades rolled in. It became the biggest commercial hit of his career and possibly the most timeless piece of worship music in the American canon. “A Love Supreme” was a realized ideal: Its four-part suite perfectly melded spiritual transcendence and physical exertion, powerful composition and openhearted improvising. And as soon as it was released, Coltrane was ready to leap ahead far further. He started expanding the classic quartet that had recorded the album until the group reached a breaking point. He brought in other, often younger musicians and guided them into furious improvisations, drawing upon spiritual traditions from across the Global South. And he rarely returned to “A Love Supreme.” ... More

Egypt film on poverty ruffles feathers triggering patriotic backlash
EL-GOUNA.- Egyptian movie "Feathers" has drawn critical acclaim abroad but its unsettling depiction of poverty in the Arab world's most populous country has sparked heated debate at home. Veteran actor Sherif Moneer, who walked out of a screening at Egypt's El Gouna Film Festival this month, has led a patriotic backlash against the film for "presenting Egypt negatively". But others have praised director Omar El Zohairy for shedding light on a genuine social problem in a way that is both artistic and constructive. On late Friday at the closing ceremony of the fifth edition of the El Gouna Film Festival, "Feathers" won the award for best Arab narrative film. "For me any artistic work will always generate differing views," a beaming Zohairy told AFP on the red carpet, addressing the issue after claiming the prize. "The film is more important than any ... More

Neue Auctions announces highlights included in online-only Fine Art & Antiques auction
BEACHWOOD, OHIO.- An eerily evocative oil painting by the Japanese-American artist Kikuo Saito (1939-2016) and two colorful and vibrant outdoor renderings by Constantin Kluge (French, 1912-2003) are just a few of the expected headliners in Neue Auctions’ online-only Fine Art & Antiques auction scheduled for Saturday, October 30th, starting promptly at 10 am Eastern time. The Saito painting, titled Summer Ghost (1997) is impressive at 50 inches by 57 ¾ inches (sight, less frame), and is signed, titled and dated verso. Saito was an abstract painter with ties to the Color Field movement and Lyrical abstraction. His work infuses richly saturated colorscapes with delicately drawn lines. The painting up for bid is a fine example (estimate: $7,000-$10,000). The Kluge oils include a Parisian cityscape titled Place de la Madeleine, signed and 40 ... More

Gene Cernan's Apollo 17 Checklist with notes for last words spoken on the Moon sold for $744,993 at auction
BOSTON, MASS.- Gene Cernan's Apollo 17 flown checklist used during his final moonwalk sold for $744,993, according to Boston-based RR Auction. On December 14, 1972, Apollo 17 Commander Gene Cernan— The last man on the Moon delivered his parting words from the lunar surface. The Apollo program was over, and mankind knew not when it would return to another celestial body. Standing before the American flag, he delivered these words: "Here man completed his first exploration of the Moon, December 1972 A.D. May the spirit of peace in which we came be reflected in the lives of all mankind'…This is our commemoration that will be here until someone like us, until some of you who are out there, who are the promise ... More

Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth, expands its curatorial team
HANOVER, NH.- The Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth, welcomes four new curators as it seeks to activate new possibilities in its collection, spaces, and staff by expanding the art and audiences with, about, and from whom we learn. In particular, these four individuals will reimagine the collection's influence and potential to forge meaningful connections across disciplines, peoples, and local and global communities. They will pursue critical scholarship, exhibitions, publications, and enhanced access while developing ethical and sustainable practices for owning, cataloging, and utilizing the Hood Museum's holdings. John Stomberg, the Virginia Rice Kelsey 1961s Director of the museum, says, "These new curators bring a wide range of experiences and expertise to the Hood Museum. Their ideas will propel the institution into the next chapter of its ... More

The historic Adams French mansion in Aberdeen, Mississippi is up for sale
ABERDEEN, MISS.- The historic Adams French mansion – a magnificent, 7,000-square-foot antebellum home on the National Register of Historic Places, situated on four bucolic acres atop the highest elevated point in Aberdeen – is for sale, for $750,000 (or best offer). The buyer would also have the option of purchasing the home’s top-quality furnishings from the period. The seller is the mansion’s sole occupant – Dwight Stevens, the owner of Stevens Auction Company, based in Aberdeen. After acquiring the house in 2002, and until 2006, when a fire to the roof forced a two-year renovation, Mr. Stevens regularly conducted his auctions there. “The mansion was the site of many million-dollar auctions,” he said. “I have some great memories.” The mansion was built starting in 1856 by Col. John Cox, a wealthy plantation owner who was also in the lumber ... More

Bernard Haitink, perhaps the wisest conductor of them all
NEW YORK, NY.- What I can still feel today, almost in my skin, is the warmth. It was July 20, 2009, at the Royal Albert Hall in London; I sat behind the orchestra, all the better to see the conductor. Bernard Haitink had led the London Symphony Orchestra through the first three movements of Mahler’s Ninth Symphony. I can’t remember much about them, to be honest, although I’m confident that the portrayal of their carnage, ironies and fear was sure. All memory of that melted in the generosity of the embrace that followed. If a D flat chord can be decent, can be understanding, then the one Haitink drew that evening from the orchestra’s strings near the start of Mahler’s concluding adagio, the composer’s farewell to life, was that and more. Haitink lay something close to a benediction on that benighted music, and through it on us, as if to say that ... More

Emerging through the fog of a pandemic with 'Giselle'
NEW YORK, NY.- Back in September of 2020, when performances in most New York City theaters were very much on pause, American Ballet Theater announced a slew of promotions for dancers with great fanfare. It was an odd move given the time and the state of the world: Was it a way to tell dancers (and donors) something along the lines of keep the faith — but also keep working out? Of the seven promotions, Joo Won Ahn, Aran Bell, Skylar Brandt, Thomas Forster, Calvin Royal III and Cassandra Trenary were named principals, and Gabe Stone Shayer became a soloist. On Thursday, Brandt made her long-awaited New York debut in “Giselle,” part of Ballet Theater’s season at the David H. Koch Theater, and others will do so over the weekend. (Next week, the company presents mixed repertory programs.) But for Wednesday’s opening, ... More

Andrew Lloyd Webber brings the music of the night back to 'Phantom'
NEW YORK, NY.- Andrew Lloyd Webber looked pleased. He was standing over the large orchestra pit of his musical “The Phantom of the Opera” at the Majestic Theater on Broadway, hearing the instrumental “Entr’Acte” from the top after a half-hour of detail work — more emphatic delivery here, more passionate lyricism there. He held his hands at his hips, a contented smile on his face. “That’s great, much better,” he said after the ensemble finished. “It just needs to be played like it’s on the edge, all the time.” Lloyd Webber, composer of some of the most famous musicals of the past five decades — in a wide stylistic range from the radio-ready rock of “Jesus Christ Superstar” to the maddening tunefulness of “Cats” and the lush romanticism of “Phantom” — was in town from Britain to prepare for the reopening on Friday of the longest-running show ... More

Dorothy Steel, whose big-screen career had a late start, dies at 95
NEW YORK, NY.- Dorothy Steel was 90 and had been acting professionally for little more than a year when her agent asked her, in late 2016, if she wanted to audition for a role in “Black Panther,” the Marvel Studios film set in the fantastical African nation of Wakanda. She was uncertain. So she said no. “I said, ‘There is no way I’m going to be in no comic strip at my age,’ ” Steel recalled telling her agent, Cindy Butler, when she appeared on Steve Harvey’s television show in 2018. “But she’s very persistent. I have to give her credit. She said, ‘Miss Dorothy, you can do this.’ ” She relented after getting an extra push from her grandson, Niles Wardell. “She was on the fence about it,” Wardell said in a phone interview, “and when she brought it to my attention I said: ‘Grandma, you always talk about stepping out on faith and doing the things ... More

The Final Years of Van Gogh's Life | The Cox Collection | Christie's



On a day like today, Italian artist Andrea della Robbia was born
October 24, 1435. Andrea della Robbia (October 24, 1435 - August 4, 1525) was an Italian Renaissance sculptor, especially in ceramics. Born in Florence, Robbia was the son of Marco della Robbia, whose brother, Luca della Robbia, popularized the use of glazed terra-cotta for sculpture. Andrea became Luca's pupil, and was the most important artist of ceramic glaze of the times. In this image: Andrea della Robbia, 1435 - 1525, Saint Michael the Archangel Italian (Florence) 15th century (ca. 1475) 1470 - 1480. Glazed terracotta; Frame, wood 31-1/8 x 61-7/8 in. (79.1 x 157.2 cm) Harris Brisbane Dick Fund, 1960 60.127.2.

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