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Sotheby's New York Apr. 26 photo sale totaled $2,217,500, with 192 of 254 lots finding buyers, a sale rate by lot of 76 percent. The sale, which followed the successful $4-million auction of photos from the Museum of Modern Art on Apr. 25, set a new auction record of $62,850 for a work -- actually a group of five photos, called Self-Deceit, Rome (1978-79) -- by Francesca Woodman, the young artist celebrated for evocative self-portrait nudes who committed suicide in 1981 at age 23. The presale estimate for the group was $30,000-$50,000. The second Woodman lot in the sale, the life-size Untitled Figure Study (1980), sold for $49,050 (est. $20,000-$30,000).

The top two lots in the sale were Paul Strand's Central Park, New York (1915-16), which sold to the Weston Gallery of Carmel, Ca., for $74,350 (est. $70,000-$100,000), and Carleton E. Watkins' Secret Town Trestle (1880), which went for $65,150 (est. $30,000-$50,000) to a private collector. Both photos came from the Collection of 7-Eleven, which sold a larger group of works from its collection in a $3.6-million single-owner sale at Sotheby's last April.

Anther highlight of the sale was Composition (1929), a double-exposure photomontage combining a nude and a pair of gloves by the Surrealist Maurice Tabard, which sold for $42,150 (est. $15,000-$25,000).

The Vitra design company and its chairman, Rolf Fehlbaum, have entered into an agreement to produce the work of the celebrated French designer Jean Prouvé (1901-84). In the fall of 2001, Vitra will present its first Prouvé designs -- the chairs Standard, Antony and Cité and a selection of tables. The pieces will be first shown in France, in conjunction with a retrospective at the Musée des Beaux Arts de Nancy opening this July to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the designer's birth. Vitra, which has a showroom in New York at 149 Fifth Avenue and also sponsors museums in Weil am Rhein and Berlin, currently produces a range of products by artists (Richard Artschwager), architects (Frank Gehry) and a range of designers (Charles and Ray Eames, George Nelson and Verner Panton).

This coming fall, the Philadelphia Museum of Art is presenting a spectacular loan exhibition of works by its native son, Thomas Eakins (1844-1916), Oct. 7, 2001-Jan. 6, 2001. Included are 70 oil paintings, a selection of watercolors, drawings and sculpture, and more than 120 photographs by the artist and his circle. Eakins' famous sporting pictures as well as the Gross Clinic and the Agnew Clinic are to be included, along with a group of portraits. The show is organized by Philadelphia Museum curator Darrel Sewell, and accompanied by a major catalogue copublished with Yale University Press. The exhibition, the first major museum show since the PMA's 1982 version, is the first to mix photos and more traditional works to such a pronounced degree. It travels to the Musée d'Orsay in Paris in the spring of 2002 and to the Metropolitan Museum in late summer 20091. It is underwritten by Advanta and Strawbridge's.

Art critics, artists, religious figures and university professors meet for a panel discussion to mark the publication of Crossroads: Art and Religion in American Life (New Press, $27.50) at St. Peter's Church at 54th Street and Lexington Avenue in Manhattan on May 16, 2001. The roundtable, which begins at 5:30 p.m., includes Abyssinian Baptist Church pastor Calvin Butts, U. of Chicago prof Neil Harris, rabbi Shirley Idelson, Harvard prof Peter Marsden and artist Meredith Monk, and is moderated by art critic Amei Wallach. The project is sponsored by the Henry Luce Foundation and the Center for Arts and Culture in Washington, D.C.

The 20-year-old Bomb magazine of contemporary art and culture launches an online benefit auction May 1-21, 2001, at, featuring works by contemporary artists generously donated to the cause. The artists enlisted in the effort range from Vito Acconci, Joe Andoe and Tina Barney to Lawrence Weiner, Stephen Westfall and Andrea Zittel, with about 70 more in between. The fund-raiser is topped off by a gala dinner and live auction of 12 of the lots at Eyebeam Atelier (540-48 W. 21st St.) on May 21, 2001, an event that promises cocktails by Bombay Sapphire gin, a toast by Klaus Kertess, dinner by Joseph Cady/Events and an auction conducted by Sotheby's Jamie Niven. If all goes well, the magazine could raise as much as $400,000. Tickets to the benefit begin at $300; for more info contact Bomb at (212) 431-3943.

For the summer, the Public Art Fund is installing two bronze sculptures by British artist Tony Cragg at the southeast entrance to Central Park in Doris C. Freedman Plaza at Fifth Avenue at 60th Street. The two works, titled Turbo (described as an "oblique spherical form" that seems to shift, shrink and expand) and Ferryman (which "stretches out along the ground like a giant sleeping cat"), make their U.S. debut in this installation, which opens on May 23 and runs through September. Underwriter for the project is Bloomberg.

The Banco do Brazil Cultural Center in São Paulo opened its five-story, 4,200-square-meter exhibition center with a show of works by the Brazilian artist Tunga on Apr. 21, 2001. According to Latinarte, forthcoming exhibitions will focus on works by Sandra Cinto and Beth Moysés.

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