ANDY GARCIA DOES TURN AS MODIGLIANI
The $12 million independent biopic Modigliani, starring Andy Garcia as the iconic tubercular painter of early modernist Paris, has completed filming (in Romania) and is currently in post-production, according to the production company, Bauer Martinez Studios. Written and directed by Mick Davis, the pot-boiling art-romance also features the French actress Elsa Zylberstein as Modi's mistress Jeanne Hebuterne, the British-born Iranian standup comic Omid Djalili as Pablo Picasso (who is painted as Modigliani's rival in the film) and supermodel Eva Herzigova as Olga Koklova, Picasso's first wife. For a look at the trailer -- if you dare -- click here.
WHISTLERIAN HANNOCK PAINTING BENEFITS PARIS REVIEW
One of the many highlights at the current Art Dealers Association of America Art Show at the Seventh Regiment Armory in Manhattan, Feb. 19-23, 2004, is a luminous landscape painting (with a exploding rocket) by Stephen Hannock at the booth of James Graham & Sons. The 22 x 18 in. oil was created by the artist as an homage to the late George Plimpton, and proceeds from its sale are being donated to the Paris Review. And no sooner was it hung at the fair than it found a buyer: James Dinan of York Capital Management, who said that as a youth he had seen Plimpton speak at the 92nd Street Y and been much impressed. The price of the work: $28,000.
SHERMAN PRINT BENEFITS PLANNED PARENTHOOD
Postmodernist photographer Cindy Sherman and her gallery, Metro Pictures, have donated an entire print run (300 prints) to benefit Planned Parenthood. The untitled color photo, which dates from 2002-04 and measures 30 x 39 inches (the image is 29 x 20 in.), shows Sherman as a pregnant, long-haired blonde (an image that was part of her last exhibition at Metro). A copy of the print was also included in Planned Parenthood's "Auction for Choice" at Sotheby's New York on Feb. 10, 2004, that raised over $1 million for the organization. For more info, and to order, click here.
WAR ART BY CHILDREN AT AXA GALLERY
As the conflict in the Middle-East persists, the new exhibition at the AXA Gallery at Seventh Avenue and 51st Street in Manhattan, "They Still Draw Pictures: Children's Art in Wartime from the Spanish Civil War to Kosovo," Feb. 18-Apr. 3, 2004, could hardly be more poignant. Organized by Anthony L. Geist and Peter N. Carroll for the University of California, San Diego, the show presents 60 drawings, largely made by school-age refugee children sheltered in colonias infantiles (children's colonies) during the Spanish Civil War but also including artwork by children experiencing the loss and horror of the more recent conflict in Kosovo. "One of the things that deeply moved us," declared Geist "was our awareness that these little works of art constitute a contemporary as well as historical problem: that children will suffer the savagery of war and still leave a record of their suffering in pictures."
ARCHIE RAND AT YUM
Much-loved New York "painter's painter" Archie Rand, known for his maverick contemporary-art interpretations of Biblical content, is now the subject of a Manhattan survey exhibition. "Archie Rand: Iconoclast" opens at the Yeshiva University Museum at the Center for Jewish History, 15 West 16th Street, Feb. 25-Aug. 15, 2004. The show includes several works from Rand's Biblical series, including Gods Change, Prayers Are Here to Stay (2000), The Seven Days of Creation (1996), The Eleven: Kabbalistic Letters (1995), Psalm 68 (1994), Nachmanides' Letter to his Son (1993) and Sixty Paintings from the Bible (1992).
MOCA LA ACQUISITIONS
The Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles has announced a total of 129 acquisitions for 2003, including works by Carl Andre, Maurizio Cattelan, Rodney Graham, Thomas Hirschhorn, Barbara Kruger, Mario Merz, Ernesto Neto, Sigmar Polke, Ed Ruscha, Yutaka Sone and Laura Owens. MOCA trustee Beth Swofford made a partial gift of Cattelan's Charlie (2003), the robotic trike-riding doll that made its debut at the 2003 Venice Biennale. MOCA purchased Ed Ruscha's 1970 Chocolate Room, an installation of 360 sheets of paper silk-screened with chocolate that was originally made for the 1970 Venice Biennale.
Other purchases included Graham's Edge of a Wood (1999), Thomas Eggerer's Atrium (2003), Hirschhorn's Non-Lieux 2002, Ketty La Rocca's Virgole (1970) and Richard Tuttle's 20 Pearls (7) (2003), the last bought with funds provided by the Friends of Joel Wachs. Seven works were bought with funds provided by the Buddy Taub Foundation: Andre's untitled (1967), Kevin Hanley's On Another Operation (2003), four works on paper by Spencer Sweeney from 2003, David Schnell's Gestange 3 (2003) and an untitled 2003 painting by Owens.
MOCA trustees Leonard Nimoy and Susan Bay-Nimoy gave several partial gifts: Kruger's Untitled (We have received orders not to move) (1982) and three works by On Kawara from 1998. Audrey Irmas gave Polke's Untitled (1975). Gary and Tracy Mezzatesta gave works by Liz Craft and Tim Hawkinson, while Joel Wachs gave works by Julie Becker and Christopher Williams. The New York art dealer Hudson (of Feature gallery) gave works by Jim Isermann. Norman and Norah Stone donated an installation by Michel Majerus from 1999, and the late Jay Chiat gave a 1989 Mario Merz installation. Artist Judy Fiskin donated a 1983 drawing by Mike Kelley.
The curatorial discretionary fund bought works by Ivan Morley, Meg Cranston, Sam Durant and David Zink Yi. The drawings committee purchased two works by Hernan Bas and a drawing by Matt Bryans. Other drawings acquisitions include works by Hannah Wilke, Fiona Banner, Wangechi Mutu, Roni Horn, Arturo Herrera and Laura Owens.
DALI BY LIBESKIND?
Deconstructivist architect Daniel Libeskind has signed on to design a new $15.7 million Salvador Dal museum in Prague, according to news reports. Libeskind unveils a model of his plan on May 11, Dal's 100th birthday; construction could be completed in 2007, according to project point-man Miro Smolak, who runs the Miro Gallery in the city's Church of St. Roch. The museum would house Dal works on loan, he said.
ART EXPO GOES POP
The folks at International Artexpo -- that would be the huge fair production company Avanstar Communication -- are going all out to popularize their next New York fair, scheduled for the Javits Convention Center, Feb. 28-Mar. 1, 2004. Ordinarily the stuff of gift shops and assorted kitsch purveyors, the fair is marketing itself under the slogan of "Defining Popular Art" and boasting special exhibits of robotic art from ArtBots, graffiti demonstrations by Tats Cru, a new "Solo Artists Pavilion" and "Artexpo University," a complementary seminar program on collecting and more. For details, see www.artexpos.com.
ACE GALLERY NEW YORK RELOCATING TO CHELSEA
After a decade at its much-admired space in the west SoHo art district, Ace Gallery New York is relocating to the Chelsea area, according to an announcement by the gallery. The final show at the 275 Hudson Street location, works from the early 1970s by Keith Sonnier, closed on Jan. 24, 2004. Details as to the new location are forthcoming; stay tuned.
KUNITZ TO ARTREVIEW New York Sun art critic Daniel Kunitz has been named as U.S. editor of ArtReview by Michelle Clark, the U.S. publisher of the magazine. Kunitz is widely published, and formerly was managing editor at the Paris Review and literary editor at Details.