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Artnet News
8/8/03


NEW DIRECTORS FOR WHITNEY, FRICK
The Whitney Museum of American Art has named Adam D. Weinberg as its new director. Weinberg, 48, who currently heads the Addison Gallery of American Art at Phillips Academy in Andover, Mass., has spent much of his professional career at the Whitney, heading up its Equitable Center branch during 1989-90 and serving as curator of the Whitney's permanent collection during 1992-98 and senior curator during 1998-99. He was program director at the American Center in Paris during 1990-92. Whitney board chairman Leonard Lauder told Carol Vogel of the New York Times that Weinberg provides a certain "comfort level. . . . We knew he would be able to hit the ground running."

Meanwhile, the Frick Collection has named Anne Little Poulet as its director, the first woman in the museum's 68-year history to hold the post. Poulet, 61, headed the department of European decorative arts and sculpture at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, for two decades, until losing her job in 1999 as part of a staff overhaul instituted by then-new director Malcolm Rogers. More recently, Poulet organized "Jean-Antoine Houdon (1741-1828): Sculptor of the Enlightenment," currently on view at the National Gallery of Art.

JULIAN SCHNABEL, THE ART BOOK
Fans of uber-artist Julian Schnabel can look forward to December, when Harry N. Abrams publishes "a very special artist's book" devoted to nearly three decades of work by the painter, sculptor and Hollywood filmmaker. Edited by Richard Olsen and designed by the artist himself, Julian Schnabel (368 pp., $75) includes 397 full-color illustrations ranging from the artist's early broken-plate paintings to his recent "Big Girl" series, and includes never-before-published photos taken on the set of his last film, Before Night Falls (2000). Publication of the book coincides with an exhibition that opens at the Schirn Kunsthalle in Frankfurt in January 2004 and travels to the Reina Sofia Museum in Madrid as well as other venues.

ALTOIDS EBAY COMIC AUCTION BENEFITS NEW MUSEUM
The Altoids breath-mint company has come up with an ingenious way to promote its new "breath strips" (in peppermint and cinnamon, suggested retail price, $1.79) and raise a few bucks at the same time for the New Museum (whose acquisitions of new art Altoids supports in a big way). For the promotion, Altoids commissioned five artists -- Beth Campbell, Erik Hanson, Dave Muller, Dave Rathman and Wayne White -- to make an original comic strip interpreting the word "strip." These works go up for auction on eBay, Aug. 25-Sept. 4, 2003, with proceeds from the sales matched by Altoids and donated to the museums. Lucky winners of the art also receive a year's supply of Altoid Strips. For more info, see www.ebay.com/altoids.

LISSITZKY PORTFOLIOS AT WILLIAMS
Print mavens are heading up to Williamstown, Mass., this summer for the exhibition "Constructs for a Brave New World: El Lissitzky's 'Proun' and 'Victory Over the Sun' Portfolios," July 26-Nov. 16, 2003, at the Williams College Museum of Art. The two portfolios include 18 lithographs and two covers, drawn from the collection of A. Fenner Milton and installed according to Lissitzky's Constructivist precepts by Williams' exhibition preparator Hideyo Okamura. The Proun portfolio -- "Proun" was Lissitzky's acronym for "Project for the Establishment of a New Art" -- consists of six images of abstract geometric forms that the artist considered a new universal language of design. The Victory over the Sun portfolio casts the protagonists in Kazimir Malevich's 1913 Futurist opera of the same name as mechanical puppets made solely from geometric shapes. The show is organized by Deborah Rothschild with assistance from Amelia Avdic and Patricia Hickson.

SWISS INSTITUTE IN A BOOK
The venturesome Swiss Institute at 495 Broadway in New York's SoHo district has collapsed three years of its cutting-edge arts programming into a 440-page book. Titled Extra: How Many Extra Layers Can We Graft onto Reality Before It Collapses?, the heavyweight tome also commemorates an exhibition of the same name held at the gallery this spring. Editor Marc-Olivier Wahler has roped in "visual essays" (largely in the form of color photographs) from an illustrious lineup of 28 mostly Swiss artists (including Olaf Breuning, Fischli/Weiss, Sylvie Fleury, Olivier Mosset, Roman Signer, Olav Westphalen and Erwin Wurm) as well as actual texts from David Deutsch, Bob Nickas and several other writers. "Art no longer attempts to develop new worlds, nor to take intrepid journeys to the ends of the real," writes Wahler. "It instead surfs along realitys surfaces." The book retails for $39.99; for more info, see www.swissinstitute.net.

LAYOFFS LOOM FOR HARVARD MUSEUMS
The Harvard University Art Museums -- the Fogg Art Museum, the Arthur M. Sackler Museum and the Busch-Reisinger Museum -- are facing staff layoffs as part of a plan to reduce a $1.5-million operating-budget deficit. The uncertain economy and shrinking endowments due to the three-year-long stock-market slump are responsible for the cuts, said museum officials. A task force has been formed to determine layoffs in the museum clerical, managerial and curatorial staffs of some 150 employees.

HOLMES NIXES WADSWORTH OVERHAUL
New Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art director Willard Holmes has thrown cold water on Dutch architect Ben van Berkel's $80-million expansion design, according to the Hartford Courant. The complicated overhaul, which had been unfavorably compared to a Dustbuster, would have required the museum to close for two years -- a prospect that Holmes has rejected. Holmes said he hopes to have "a new vision" for the museum ready by November.

MURAL FELLOWSHIPS FROM NATIONAL ACADEMY
The National Academy of Design and the Edwin Austin Abbey Memorial Fund for Mural Painting in America has announced 13 recipients of $1,200 fellowships in its third annual mural workshop. The winners are Chuck Agro, Lourdes A. Bernard, Debbra L. Ellison, Martha Ferris, Sue Friesz, Dana Gerolimatos, Mary Josephson, David Loewenstein, Mark Schwing, Tova Snyder, Todd Stone, Thomas Tacik and Hataya Tubtim. An exhibition of the final proposals and maquettes is on view at the National Academy of Design School of Fine Arts, 5 East 89th Street, Aug. 4-Sept. 27, 2003. Director of the workshop for 2003 was Grace Graupe-Pillard.

WOLKOWITZ GALLERY TO OPEN IN CHELSEA
New York's Chelsea art district is getting a new gallery devoted to new media and photography. Bryce Wolkowitz Gallery opens at 601 West 26th Street, Suite 1240, with "Art Apparatus," Sept. 19-Nov. 1, 2003 a group show including works by Jim Campbell, Alan Rath, John F. Simon Jr. and Steina. Guggenheim Museum curator John G. Hanhardt has written the essay in the accompanying catalogue. Wolkowitz was formerly a photo specialist at Christie's; the new 2,400-square-foot gallery was designed by architect Michael Gabellini, who also oversaw spaces for Marian Goodman Gallery and Grant Selwyn. For more info, see www.brycewolkowitz.com.

ART SHOW FOR NEW FERRAGAMO STORE
The new 20,000-square-foot flagship Ferragamo store that has opened at 655 Fifth Avenue is planning to premiere its own art gallery on Sept. 12, 2003, just in time for Fashion Week. For the debut exhibition, titled "Game," some 17 artists were invited to make works inspired by a black calfskin pump with a Louis XV-style heel and "labyrinth" patterned zigzag stitching -- a style inspired by Futurism and Cubist collage -- that Ferragamo designed in the 1920s. Among the participants are Vanessa Beecroft, Sylvie Fleury, Luis Gispert, Mark Handforth, Brad Kahlhamer, Armin Linke, Rob Pruitt, Tobias Rehberger, Rosemarie Trockel and Pae White. The show organized by Conde Nast Italia editor Franca Sozzani and art consultant Mariuccia Casadio. The inaugural event benefits Child Priority and Free Arts, two foundations that offer help to disadvantaged youth.

SURF MOVIE IN THE HAMPTONS
In August, the art world in the Hamptons has all the fun. On Aug. 13, 2003, photographer and filmmaker Michael Halsband is screening Surf Movie: Reels 1-14 at Guild Hall in East Hampton, along with the East End version of North of Nowhere and a short preview of Thomas Campbell's Sprout. The event, which kicks off at 7 p.m., benefits the Long Island chapter of the Surfrider Foundation. Tickets are $10, and include a free t-shirt. Call (631) 477-8704 for info.