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What effect will the new Labour government and Prime Minister Tony Blair have on government support of the arts in Britain? A cut in Lottery funds going to the arts, for one, and pressure to make museum admission free, for the other. Britain's hugely successful National Lottery currently raises some £1.5 billion for the five Good Causes, one of which is the arts. Blair wants to reallocate about £200 million of this money for health and education. According to The Art Newspaper, lottery funds for the arts would drop from about £300 million a year to £260 million, a cut of 13 percent. Labour also says that museums stand a better chance of winning Lottery funds if they offer free admission. Bad luck for the Victoria and Albert Museum, which before the election instituted a £5 admission to help cover costs in the face of falling government funding.

MOCA RAISES $150,000
The Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles raised over $150,000 at its 18th-anniversary benefit at the Beverly Hills Hotel on Friday, June 6. The gala honored 18 MOCA patrons, including former L.A. mayor Tom Bradley, MOCA chairman Eli Broad, and MOCA architects Frank Gehry and Arata Isozaki. Tickets were $250 each.

The art collection the J. Paul Getty Trust has assembled for its offices in the new Getty Center in Brentwood is "dull and unimaginative," writes L.A. Times critic Christopher Knight. The more than 100 prints and drawings acquired in the last four months, Knight says, are the sort of thing one might see at law offices in Cleveland or at a Dallas accounting firm. About 100 prints and drawings were assembled for the Getty offices by Beatrix Medinger of Viart Corp. in New York for an estimated $1 million. Among the purchases are works by Lita Albuquerque, Domenicho Bianchi, Christo, Jim Dine, David Hockney, Julian Lethbridge, Adolph Gottlieb, Damien Hirst, Donald Judd, Anish Kapoor, Ellsworth Kelly, Sol Lewitt, Robert Mangold, Claes Oldenburg, Kiki Smith and Pat Steir.

The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts and the Campbell Soup Company have joined together to license Warhol's soup-can imagery on a wide range of new commercial products. Warhol-inspired carpets, tapestries, stationary and beach towels will debut at the International Licensing Expo in New York next week. Future plans call for licensing Warhol images for watches, clocks, jewelry, leather goods and other apparel and accessories.

The Wexner Center for the Arts at Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio, has awarded Gerhard Richter the sixth annual Wexner Prize. The prize includes $50,000 as well as a commemorative sculpture designed by Jim Dine. An exhibition of Richter's work is slated for the Wexner, Jan. 28-Apr. 18, 1998.

Lisa Corrin has been named curator of the Serpentine Gallery in London. She was chief curator at the Contemporary Museum in Baltimore, Md., which is known for organizing temporary shows in borrowed spaces; the latest is "Too Jewish" (to June 29), on view at a former "discovery zone" space in Owens Mills, Md.

Valentin Rodionov, the director of Moscow's Tretyakov Gallery, says the museum is seriously underfunded and its art works may be in danger. According to the Associated Press, Rodionov said the Tretyakov costs over $20 million a year to run, but has been allocated only $9 million and has received less than $3 million from the cash-poor Russian government. A ten- year renovation of the 141-year-old museum, which over 100,000 works, was completed two years ago.

The Jewish Museum, which was founded in 1904, is commemorating its 50th anniversary in the Warburg Mansion on Fifth Avenue and 92nd Street in New York. Leading up to its centennial in 2004, the museum will present exhibitions of Chaim Soutine (1998) and pre-World War I modernist art in Berlin (1999). Also promised are shows of Ben Shahn, George Segal and Lasar Segall. Opening there later this month is "Revealing an Ancient Message: A Synagogue Mosaic from Sepphoris" and "Letters from Cairo: Jews and Muslims 800-1500."