Magazine Home  |  News  |  Features  |  Reviews  |  Books  |  People  |  Horoscope  
Artnet News
The fourth installment of Paris Photo, featuring 93 galleries and publishers from 16 countries (23 of them new), opens at the Carrousel du Louvre, Nov. 16-19, 2000. The fair, which has spread from its usual quarters to encompass the Salle Souflot as well, is also presenting the collections of five major corporate art patrons: luxury brand Cartier, film production company Première Heure and financial enterprises CCF, NSM Vie/ABN AMRO and the Caisse des Dépôts et Consignations. Among the highlights are six solo shows, including Daniel Buetti at Ars Futura (Zurich), Yuki Kimura at Taka Ishii (Tokyo), Frédéric Leféver at Gabrielle Maubrie, Vik Muniz at Brent Sikkema (New York), Liza Ryan at Griffin Contemporary (Venice, Ca.) and Nick Waplington at Gilles Peyroulet & Cie. (Paris). Admission is 70 FF per person; visit the fair's website for more details.

Dia Center for the Arts is launching its new online artist project, David Claerbout's Present, Nov. 9. In the artist's first computer-based artwork, visitors have the choice of three flowers -- an amaryllis, gerbera or red rose -- to download to their computer, where the blossom will be viewable by clicking on a desktop icon. Depending on the local time, a brief video of the flower appears in morning, afternoon or evening light, or darkness. After approximately one week, the flower removes itself, leaving a seed to send to someone else.

The next big show at Gavin Brown's Enterprise on West 15th Street in New York's Chelsea District is devoted to the perennial white rap favorites, the Beastie Boys, Nov. 16-25, 2000. The exhibition, organized by Yvonne Force and the Art Production Fund, features photos and a video installation chronicling the history of the group from 1980 to the present, and is mounted in conjunction with the release of The Sounds of Science, a limited edition four-LP vinyl anthology. Proceeds from the show benefit Milarepa, a nonprofit established by the Beasties to support the Tibetan struggle for independence.

Speaking of vinyl, the venerable SoHo artists' bookstore, Printed Matter, is offering The Man in Black/Drone Harness, a limited edition "1970s style" 12-inch picture disc by Matthew Barney and Jonathan Bepler. The disc includes images from Barney's Cremaster 2 and Bepler remixes from the film's soundtrack, featuring drums by Slayer's bad-ass druMmer Dave LOmbardo. The gatefold features a picture of Barney as Gary Gilmore, sitting in car with his pants pulled down, his member digitally tweaked to look much smaller than the aforementioned 12 inches. The record is limited to an edition of 500 and is available for a low $275 through Dec. 31. Sales are limited to two per person; call (212) 925-0325 for more info.

A friend from Chicago writes: Nobody in the art world here will miss the Terra Museum of American Art if it does in fact move to Washington, D.C. [see Artnet News, 9/28/2000]. It was too small and too weak an institution to survive the trip to the Magnificent Mile from the wealthy Chicago suburb of Evanston, where it began life as ambassador Daniel Terra's house museum.

Terra was a son of a bitch who yelled at his staff and fired one museum director after another. Nobody wept at his funeral. As a collector, he did not always buy well. He got art by big names, but too much stuff had been picked over years before and was the dregs of the dregs. The Art Institute of Chicago has choicer work from the Terra's period -- the late 19th century and early 20th century.

For a while, the Terra had a real art man -- John Hallmark Neff -- as its director. He improved the lighting and installation, and strived to give its exhibition program a shape (his predecessor was an accountant from Terra's enterprises). But it does not seem that Neff's efforts were enough. He was the museum's umpteenth director -- they came and went with amazing rapidity.

If the Terra does depart Chicago, it won't leave much of a hole in the city's cultural life. The museum was unable to grow beyond its suburban following. Quite simply, nobody went there. Moral of the story: You must employ professionals to run your museum and must give them peace and quiet in which to do their job.

An Arizona Court of Appeals panel has ruled against the estate of Martha Nelson, which sought to rescind its 1996 sale of two paintings for $60 to Carl and Anne Rice. The works turned out to be Magnolia Blossoms and Cherokee Roses by Martin Johnson Heade, subsequently sold through Christie's for $1,072,000, reports the Arizona Republic. The estate had argued that the transaction was based upon a mutual mistake, but the court ruled that the estate "was a victim of its own folly," adding that it had "ample opportunity to discover what it was selling and failed to do so."

Meanwhile, Sandusky, Ohio, dealer Ronald Showalter claims New York gallerist William Secord deceived him by claiming that Sir Edwin Landseer's Retriever and Woodcock (1845) was worth approximately $11,000 or $12,000. Showalter sold the painting, only to see Secord resell it for $140,000 in a Christie's sale about six months later. According to the lawsuit, Secord knew the work was a Landseer, having mentioned the British artist at least 20 times in his 1992 book Dog Painting, 1840-1940. Showalter is suing for $50,000 in damages.

After agreeing to pay a total of $512 million to settle a class-action suit involving 100,000 clients, Christie's and Sotheby's are being hit with another one, according to press reports. The new lawsuit contends that several officials in both houses not named in the first case were aware of the price-fixing conspiracy and did nothing to stop it. The complaint fingers a number of former Sotheby's officers, including vice-chairman Max M. Fisher, president Michael L. Ainslie and Kevin A. Bousquette. On the Christie's side, the suit names Christopher Burge, François Curiel and Stephen S. Lash, as well as former chairman Daniel P. Davidson and ex-president Patricia Hambrecht. The papers filed offer no proof to back up the accusations, which is not uncommon in class-action suits.

The Howard Gilman Foundation has donated a collection of 103 idealized, fantastic and utopian architectural drawings to the Museum of Modern Art. The works, mostly dating from the 1960s and 1970s, are to be featured in an upcoming major exhibition and catalogue. You can currently see a selection of 16 of the drawings in "Architecture Hot and Cold," part of the "Open Ends" exhibition, Sept. 28, 2000-Jan. 2, 2001.

In an attempt at clarity, President Clinton has signed into law a bill renaming the National Museum of American Art to the Smithsonian American Art Museum, as proposed by the organization's own commission. The institution has also changed its website address to

Yale University Press senior editor Judy Metro has been named publications editor-in-chief at the National Gallery of Art. She replaces Frances P. Smyth, who died last year after holding the position for 18 years.

-- compiled by Giovanni Garcia-Fenech
Artnet News can be reached by email at Send Email.