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Germany

Danger! High voltage: former German power station sparks back to life as green arts centre

E-Werk Luckenwalde will be powered with locally sourced biomass, with excess energy sold back to the grid

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UK politics

Boris Johnson’s Olympic mega-sculpture is £13m in debt

Visitors decline steeply at ArcelorMittal Orbit by Anish Kapoor in east London

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Art law

Number of Manhattan's park art vendors can be limited by New York City, court rules

Appeals court says that guidelines limiting number of sellers in four green spaces are constitutional

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Museum directors

Udo Kittelmann will leave Berlin Nationalgalerie next year

The museum director, who manages five Berlin museums in his current role, will not renew his contract which expires in October 2020

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Iran

British Council condemns Iran court upholding ten-year sentence for UK-based curator

Aras Amiri loses final appeal over spying charges

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Controversies

Eleven artists withdraw or modify their works at Aichi Triennale in ongoing censorship row

Cuban activist Tania Bruguera closes down her exhibit while other artists reconfigure works to reflect the controversy

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Heritage

Artists demand rethink in rebuilding of Potsdam church where Hitler cemented power

Open letter describes the Garrison Church, damaged in the Second World War, as the symbol of an “unholy alliance” between church, military, and state

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Commercial galleries

Australia's only gallery dedicated to female artists to open in Melbourne

Founder of Finkelstein Gallery aims to counter the low representation of women in the Australian art world

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Yoko Ono

Just a 'well-known celebrity': Australian tourism chief doubted Yoko Ono's ability to draw crowds

Letter reveals that 2013 exhibition at Museum of Contemporary Art was offered AU$500,000 of state money despite reservations

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Exhibitions

An early start to celebrating the US centennial of women’s suffrage

San Jose Museum of Art celebrates visionary female artists

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British Museum

British Museum to display hundreds of thousands of archived artefacts in new storage facility

BM Arc will provide the institution with 15,628 sq.m to show its objects in greater context and increase public access

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Restitution

German Nazi loot panel divided on Max Stern painting—but returns it to his heirs anyway

For first time, advisory team stipulates that work must not be sold for ten years in case evidence emerges that contradicts its ruling

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Biennials & festivals

Inaugural Rabat Biennale to be made up (mainly) of female artists

Curator Abdelkader Damani explains the reasons behind launching Moroccan show in already saturated biennial landscape

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African art

African art gallery co-founded by Hemingway's son opens Tribeca storefront

The gallery originally opened in the 1970s as a venue for the launch party of Hemingway's memoir

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Museums

What exactly is a museum? Icom comes to blows over new definition

As 50-year-old statement is overhauled, feuds over new description could "seriously weaken" the International Council of Museums

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Gerhard Richter

Gerhard Richter to donate works for a room devoted to his art in new Berlin museum

Announcement comes after the German artist turned down proposals for his own museum in Cologne

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Kashmir

Kashmir lockdown traps artists headed for Kochi residency

Two students from the University of Kashmir are unable to leave the state following government imposed restrictions on movement and communication

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Museums & Heritage

Liverpool World Museum used facial recognition technology on visitors to Terracotta Warriors show

Privacy group condemns move but the museum says people were made aware of the surveillance measures

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Smuggling

Stolen artefacts from 'prolific art smuggler' returned to India

Objects are reportedly linked to antiquities dealer Subhash Kapoor who is facing criminal charges in the US

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Museums & Heritage

Survivors and victims’ families oppose plans for a $40m museum at site of Pulse shooting

The group says fundraising efforts to turn the Orlando nightclub into a tourist destination would be better spent on survivors’ care

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Conservation & Preservation

New York Public Library shores up its marble lions

Two-month conservation effort for the sculptures follows a public appeal to donors

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Istanbul Biennial

Istanbul Biennial shifts to waterside warehouse after asbestos scare

New Antrepo 5 venue announced after curator says visitors could have been at risk

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Conservation

Isenheim altarpiece restorers invite visitors in

Laser imaging comes to aid of restoration of 16th-century paintings and sculptures

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Ai Weiwei

Puccini gets political: Ai Weiwei to direct opera in Rome about Hong Kong crisis

The Chinese artist will also design the sets and costumes for the production at the Teatro dell'Opera next year

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Artists

Robert Indiana’s caretaker allowed him ‘to live in squalor and filth’ despite artist having $13m in the bank

Jamie Thomas is accused of stealing more than $1m and 100 works of art from the late artist in new court filing

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Conservation & Preservation

San Francisco school board votes to preserve but conceal a controversial mural

Its 4-3 decision reverses an earlier vote to paint over a 1930s work that some parents and board members found racist and damaging to students

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Cathedral of Notre Dame

Construction on Notre Dame pushed back to 19 August as steps taken to decontaminate site from lead

Construction had been expected to start a week earlier, but new safety measures for the protection of workers are still being tested

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Art market

Trump delays tariffs on Chinese goods until December—but not for art and antiquities

New 10% tax will come into force on 1 September and apply to all works originating from China, regardless of where they are imported from

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Leonardo da Vinci

'Immersive experience' at London's National Gallery to reveal secrets of Leonardo’s Virgin of the Rocks

X-rays showing artist's original composition reveal that angel and Infant Christ were positioned higher up

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Hong Kong

As crisis deepens, activists stage pro-democracy exhibition in Hong Kong

Show at WMA Space tells the “story of HongKongers” through protest ephemera

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Public art

Vancouver mural memorialises First Nations’ aide to stranded Indian immigrants

The work was unveiled as the name of a Conservative politician behind the Komagata Maru incident was removed from the federal building on which it is painted

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Antiquities & Archaeology

Historians bake sourdough bread with yeast that could date to ancient Egypt

The loaf, made with yeast extracted from an artefact at the MFA Boston, could provide valuable insight into ancient civilisations

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Museums

London mayor Sadiq Khan supports proposal for new slavery museum in the capital

Liverpool slavery museum keen to collaborate on project highlighting UK’s involvement in the trans-Atlantic slave trade

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Art market

For African artists, it pays to be female

Four women top the auction market for African art as collectors look to 'fill gaps in the market'

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Performa

Performa 19 to explore the influence of the Bauhaus School on live performance

The biennial includes around 20 new commissions by artists such as Kia LaBeija and Ed Atkins

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Discrimination

Wheelchair user blasts Olafur Eliasson show at Tate Modern over rampless work

After consulting with the Danish-Icelandic artist and technicians, Tate says installation “cannot be made safely accessible for wheelchair users”

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Hastings Contemporary

Victor Willing's life, work and tumultuous relationship with Paula Rego explored in first UK retrospective

New documentary by Willing’s son will also form part of Hastings Contemporary's reassessment of the forgotten artist

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Museums

UK national museums lent almost half a million objects around the world last year

Most were scientific materials, but 69,000 went to cultural venues

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Exhibitions

In highly personal portraits, an artist speaks up for his native Baltimore

Painted before Donald Trump disparaged the city, Derrick Adams's new works celebrate family life there

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Obituaries

Greek sculptor Panayiotis Vassilakis, known as Takis, has died at 93

The self-taught artist explored magnetic field energy in his kinetic works, admired by Duchamp and the American Beat poets

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Obituaries

Nancy Reddin Kienholz, artist and partner of Ed Kienholz, dies age 75

The pair created provocative installations about American society, race and sex

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Activism

Mural in Santa Fe underscores violence against Indigenous women

The work holds weight in New Mexico, which has the highest rate of violent crimes against Native American women in the US

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Hong Kong

Ai Weiwei sends research team to Hong Kong as demonstrations continue

Speaking to the BBC, Chinese dissident artist says West is unlikely to interfere and he has 'no trust in Britain at all'

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Rachid Koraichi

Algerian artist Rachid Koraichi builds cemetery for drowned migrants

Though the site is due to open next spring, Koraichi has already had to bury 56 anonymous bodies to relieve overcrowding in existing local cemeteries

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Lawyers for teenager accused of throwing boy from tenth-floor of Tate Modern seek psychiatric reports

Defendant remains in custody until trial in February

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Exhibitions

Tracey Emin and Edvard Munch joint show on its way to London’s Royal Academy of Arts

Exhibition first opens at Norway’s new Munch Museum, where Emin’s giant bronze The Mother will be permanently installed outside

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Restitution

Growing pressure on the British Museum as Jamaica is latest government seeking return of objects

Spokeswoman for the London museum says it has not been officially approached by the country over the return of the two objects made by the Taíno people in its collection

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Obituaries

Kamal Boullata—Palestinian master of abstract art and Arabic calligraphy—dies, aged 77

Jerusalem-born artist who lived 50 years in exile was a pioneer of the hurufiyya movement and one of the first to write about Palestine's art history

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Looting

Over 18,000 cultural goods seized and 59 arrested in trafficking sting

Multi-national operation organised by Europol involved police forces from 29 countries

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Censorship

Artists wade into row over Japanese triennial dedicated to freedom of speech

More than 70 participants including Candice Breitz and Tania Bruguera have signed a statement demanding reopening of Aichi Triennale's exhibition

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US politics

African American leaders object to erasure of controversial school mural in San Francisco

Local figures defend portrayal of the nation’s blemished early history

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Art the Arms Fair

Trigger warning: Guerrilla Girls among artists protesting against London arms fair with parallel show

Art the Arms Fair's inaugural 2017 exhibition saw a work by Banksy sell for £205,000 to benefit anti-war campaigns

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Art market

Fourth Sotheby’s shareholder files lawsuit in bid to block $3.7bn sale to Patrick Drahi

Auction house says such litigation is “routine in the US”, with deal expected to be completed by the end of the year

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Censorship

Long-running Facebook battle over censored Courbet painting gets happy ending

Social media giant pays out after closing French teacher's account for posting photo of the Origin of the World

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Teenager charged with attempted murder after six-year-old boy is ‘thrown’ from tenth floor of Tate Modern

Metropolitan Police are exploring mental health as a line of inquiry

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Ancient Egypt

Golden touch up: King Tutankhamun's coffin undergoes first ever restoration at new Grand Egyptian Museum

Famous Ancient Egyptian artefact transferred from Luxor tomb to Cairo for delicate conservation work ahead of museum opening

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Photography

Huge photos of school children to appear on London billboards as part of Steve McQueen’s Tate initiative

The outdoor exhibition across the capital is a forerunner to the filmmaker’s Year Three Project at Tate Britain

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Outer Space

Work by an African artist to be launched into space to highlight effects of global warming

Piece will be fixed onto nose of an Ariane 5 launcher that will be collecting data on climate change's impact on Africa

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Bauhaus

Art Institute of Chicago show traces the Bauhaus’s legacy in 20th-century textile art

The weaving workshop was “an incubator of aesthetic and pedagogical talent”

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JMW Turner

Export bar placed on Turner's masterpiece The Dark Rigi

The watercolour painting, considered one of the artist's finest works, was sold to a private collector in 2006

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Hong Kong

Hong Kong's cultural workers defy government pressure to hit streets in protest

Several thousand civil servants, including many from state-backed arts institutions, come out in support of ongoing pro-democracy protests

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Museu Coleção Berardo

Berardo museum stays open in Lisbon despite uncertainty over future of ‘Portuguese Saatchi’s’ collection

Portuguese government has stepped in and seized art assets following protracted legal battle, press reports say

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Interviews

In the rescued Johnson archive, poignant images from black American history

How four institutions swooped in to acquire four million images

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Restoration

Delicate seven-year restoration of altarpiece finally completed at London's National Gallery

The 16th-century work The Virgin and Child with Saints is now back on show in the museum

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Freeports

Freeport debate rages on after UK government commits to establishing ten vast storage facilities

Labour MP Owen Smith calls the tax-free zones “self-storage for art thieves”

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Museums

Baltimore Museum of Art dedicates a year of exhibitions to women

From Georgia O’Keeffe to Mickalene Thomas, museum will aim to address diversity gaps

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Art market

Timothy Sammons 'very remorseful' as he is jailed for defrauding clients of up to $30m

British art dealer sentenced to up to 12 years after pleading guilty to fraud and grand larceny in the New York State Supreme Court

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Attribution

Hidden number discovered in conservation helps reveal painting is from Titian's workshop

Part of the Wellington Collection in London, the picture was originally believed to be by a minor north Italian artist

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Art market

Female artists outperform men when their work returns to auction, report finds

A data study by Sotheby's Mei Moses reveals a 73% increase for work by women in repeat sales, while male artists lagged at 8%

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Law

London art dealer Joseph Nahmad banged partner’s head against wall during drunken row at Knightsbridge flat

Nahmad could face jail time after admitting two counts of assault against Georgia Barry

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Museums & Heritage

For its centennial, Oriental Institute weds ancient artefacts with contemporary art

Three artists enter a dialogue with Middle Eastern antiquities at the University of Chicago

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Jobs

Join The Art Newspaper's team in New York

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Museums

Building on credit: why museums like Lacma use bonds to fund ambitious expansions

Being rated by a credit agency can help an institution secure support for costly construction projects—and avoid over-extending itself

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Art market

Brexit contributes to 10% drop in sales at Sotheby’s in first half of 2019

Sale to telecoms magnate Patrick Drahi looks set to go ahead as firm makes up for a loss in revenue through increased commissions and more efficient guarantees

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Law

Family claims quarter share of disputed Isleworth Mona Lisa

The painting, long the subject of an attribution dispute, is now at the centre of a legal conflict over ownership