Issue 260 - September 2014

News | Art Market | Books | Comment | Conservation | Exhibitions | Fairs Auctions | Features | Focus | Museums | Obituary |


Star of David rises over Hitler’s former HQ Free

Artists rebuild fragments of a former synagogue in Polish castle

Iconoclasm reborn with Islamic State fanaticism

But the extent of the destruction is uncertain in the fog of war

US groups urge fast broadband for all as online plans threaten access to art Free

Proposed “two-tier” internet could leave artists with inadequate technology, while wealthy content providers get super-fast connections

Paintings honour dead Afghan soldier Free

Jenny's Holzer's new series is based on US government and intelligence reports

Can art give power to the people?

Socially engaged art is increasingly popular with museums and local communities, but its impact is unclear

At the Saatchi Gallery charity begins… in secret Free

Name withheld of foundation that will benefit from sale of Emin’s bed

Scottish artists divided ahead of independence vote Free

Opinion polls reveal rise in support of "Yes" campaign

UK-Russia Bacon show goes on…

…but British government officially pulls out of joint Year of Culture

Munich auction house sacks jailed director

Ex-employee fired over allegations of embezzlement after conviction relating to Girolamini Library thefts

Auction house fires disgraced director

Munich auctioneer connected to Girolamini Library thefts is sacked over alleged embezzlement

Tax breaks to fund Italian heritage

Rebates of up to 65% will raise money for restoration if landmark bill becomes law

Art Market

Art fairs multiply across Greater China Free

Three new events open in Shanghai this month

Online sellers jockey for position

Partnerships and consolidation deals dominated this summer

Work of art or ‘valueless bunch of multi-coloured spots’?

Dealers call for Hirst’s Bombay Mix wall painting to be restored, not destroyed, as legal battle continues

Appeal to raise £4.5m for Morris’s manor

Fundraising kicks off with charity auction

The winning bidders who won’t pay up

Excuses include over-enthusiasm, sudden financial loss and uncontrollable cats


Young artists under pressure to pay for publicity

Even some bloggers now ask galleries and artists for cash or art, though the big names don’t want to know

London’s Old Master sales: delight and some surprises

Peripheral artists from Barbara Piasecka Johnson’s collection were among those under the hammer


British, by George!

Three hundred years after the accession of the Hanoverians, new aspects of 18th-century British culture are examined

Tits and bums, part II

The art history of Covent Garden in the 18th century

A lifetime’s work— and well worth it

Scholars will treasure this catalogue of the Hermitage’s Persian art

Illuminating texts

French, Insular and Anglo-Saxon illuminated manuscripts

As it was in the beginning

Essays on the Constantinian basilica of St Peter in Rome

A man of sorrows, acquainted with grief

Rubens’s art is founded on Catholic convictions, born of religious violence

Enigmas unravelled

The ideas underpinning De Chirico’s “Metaphysical” paintings

Change as leitmotif

The work of the British post-war painter Maurice Cockrill

Larousse à la carte

Duchamp’s Humpty-Dumpty definitions

Canova versus Thorvaldsen

The battle for Neo-Classicism and the influence of Kant

Order! Order!

The origins of the Classical orders lie in Greek visual culture


Time runs out to strike deal over art seized after 1945

Period of grace ends for German museums to settle with the heirs of objects and property expropriated by the Soviets

Regional museums: unite!

The attempt to create a consortium of non-national museums to stop a work by Poussin disappearing abroad may have failed, but it shows the potential benefits of pooling resources and working together


Empress’s first portrait restored Free

Painting commissioned from US artist in 1903 returns to Smithsonian for extensive work

Inside a troubled mind

Treatment of epic drawing reveals boil-ridden woman giving birth to a bird

Van Eyck: the unvarnished truth

Removal of overpaint and varnish from the Ghent Altarpiece reveals unseen aspects of the artist’s work


Artists play with fire at the Gwangju Biennale Free

Curator confronts South Korea's turbulent past

Everything is connected

Nicolas Bourriaud’s Taipei Biennial expands on his theory of “relational aesthetics”

The last great Ming show?

After the British Museum’s show, loans will be curtailed

Chinese conflict and harmony

More than 30 works from China in the Asia Triennial Manchester

The artist who won’t let us forget

Germany’s Nazi past is evoked in Anselm Kiefer’s first retrospective in the UK

The power of the past

How John Constable found his inspiration in Classical landscapes by the Old Masters

Turner’s final flourish

Tate show traces his highly productive late period

More than a pretty face

Dumas’ portraits reveal our common humanity

The beauty of the Borgias

Paris exhibition brings the art patronage of the Italian family, notorious for their vices, back to the fore

Prepotent Rubens

Sex, violence, compassion and elegance link the artist to those who succeeded him

Out of the ordinary

An alternative history of Modern art in America that is rarely told in museums and art colleges

Turner’s final flourish celebrated at Tate Britain Free

Exhibition opening in London this week is bound for Los Angeles and San Francisco

Fairs Auctions

Parisian fairs on charm offensive this autumn

Two established fairs maintain their status through times of change and criticism


Glenn Ligon The same, but different

Multiple sources, reinterpretations and reoccurrences are what motivates the US-born artist, whose first UK solo show is about to open in London.

Space and what to do with it Free

Ziba Ardalan had no intention of being just another rich collector. Inspired by Swiss kunsthalles, she set up Parasol Unit, and is celebrating its tenth anniversary

Comical Reaction from the streets of Damascus

A new book uses the arts to challenge assumptions


São Paulo ready for big-budget biennial Free

Emotionally engaging their audience—with a little help from YouTube—is the name of the curators’ game

Politics not just part of Bienal’s past Free

This year’s edition aims to prompt discussions about the social and economic problems facing Brazil

Museums 1-0 galleries Free

Football fans flocked to see art—but not to buy it—during the World Cup

Millions turn out for Kusama in South America

"Infinite Obsession" retrospective tours Argentina, Brazil and Mexico

Off the beaten track Free

Brazil’s cultural offering is far richer—and more widespread—than many realise. Here are some of the country’s hidden gems

In São Paulo for the Bienal? Make time for these… Free

Ten exhibitions on view in venues across the city this autumn

News in brief from Brazil Free

From construction delays at Inhotim to curators' attack on ‘vain’ work in Niemeyer space

How the slave trade shaped the Baroque Free

As Catholicism spread across the colonies, slaves and freedmen created a uniquely Brazilian style

Neo-Classical falls foul of Brazil’s love of Baroque Free

Country seeks to preserve Baroque and Modern buildings but still fails to fund restoration of its disappearing 19th-century heritage

Reappraisal increases respect for Brazil’s 19th-century art Free

Experts are reassessing what was previously seen—and shunned—as a conservative copy of French style

Street art versus Fifa Free

In the run-up to the World Cup, protest graffiti filled Brazil’s walls with potent expressions of discontent

Bank saves Brazil’s biggest museum Free

Debt-ridden São Paulo institution forced to make major changes at the top

What’s hot in Brazil Free

From one artist’s funk doppelganger to an art school in a park, São Paulo-based writer and curator Daniela Castro picks the ones to watch


Asia proves a lucrative destination for France's museums Free

Concern at home at number of major works sent abroad by national museums

Louvre to get grand makeover

Jean-Luc Martinez initiates a “silent revolution” to modernise the museum, starting at the entrance

The Poussin that got away

Director of the Fitzwilliam tried to organise joint acquisition of masterpiece by museums in the regions

Aga Khan’s gift to Canada Free

Riches of Islamic art and science to be unveiled in Toronto’s new cultural complex

Garage saves history of art underground Free

Moscow museum creates Russia’s first uncensored library of contemporary art

Louvre director plans its grand revamp Free

Jean-Luc Martinez initiates "silent revolution" to modernise museum, starting at the entrance

The Louvre’s director Jean-Luc Martinez reveals revolutionary changes ahead Free

Work begins this month on improving the Pyramid entrance


George Scanlon

Archaeologist extraordinaire and debonair dancer with the stars