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6/4/97


POND SCUM
We here at ArtNet Magazine are pleased to announce the new Dagger Awards for Art Critics, designed to honor those critical texts that cut right to the heart -- the heart of the artist, that is. First winner for 1997 is Peter Schjeldahl for his review of Mark Tansey in the May 27 issue of the Village Voice. Throughout a devastating 23 column inches under the title "The Ignorant Eye Test," Schjeldahl heaped on the pejoratives, beginning with "retro-styled, smarty-pants graphic filler that beguiles visually challenged readers" and ending with a notation that what Tansey does to paint "shouldn't happen to pond scum." Nominations for future ArtNet Dagger Awards are gratefully accepted via email.

ARTFORUM ONLINE
The soul of the art critical avant-garde, Artforum magazine, has now entered cyberspace (even though it is rumored that the magazine's savvy publisher, Anthony Korner, still works on a Commodore 64). It's all a little buggy at present, but it looks good. Go to the new site's bulletin board, where you all in the peanut gallery can comment on the latest issue!

FARRAH PAINTS
All art lovers are no doubt aware that the 50-year-old Farrah Fawcett has had her debut as a celebrity painter in the July issue of Playboy magazine under the banner cover line "Farrah's Naked Art Special." In order to cover the story properly, your ArtNet editors bit the bullet and actually delved into the magazine. It turns out that the article was penned by the estimable Glenn O'Brien, who points out the link between Farrah's body prints and Yves Klein's "Anthropometrie" series in the `60s, and furthermore notes that Farrah's studio at her Bel Air home looks like the real thing, with "brushes lying around" and "drawings taped everywhere." Much to our disappointment, though, after wading through pages of pinups, we found no real images of Farrah's paintings. There were a few shots, however, of Farrah posing in doggy position, covered in gold paint and pushing her breasts against a canvas on the floor.

GUGGENHEIM BRANCH FOR BERLIN
The Guggenheim Museum says it will open the Deutsche Guggenheim Berlin this fall in the ground floor space of the newly restored Berlin headquarters of Deutsche Bank. The Guggenheim's newest satellite is designed by Richard Gluckman and is located at the intersection of Unter den Linden and Charlottenstrasse in a 1920s sandstone building near the Brandenburg Gate. It will have a single gallery, measuring 138 x 28 x 23 feet, and present three shows a year.

BUCK JOINS MARLBOROUGH
Marlborough Gallery has announced that Robert Buck, former director of the Brooklyn Museum (1983-96) and before that director of the Albright-Knox Art Gallery in Buffalo, N.Y. (1973-1983), has joined the gallery as a director. He succeeds the late Jack Mognaz, who was director at the gallery for many years and passed away late last year.

JAMES LEE BYARS, 1932-1997
James Lee Byars, 65, Fluxus artist whose affection for things golden found expression in Minimally luxurious installations and performance pieces, died of cancer on May 23 in Cairo. He first came to fame in Europe in 1972 at Documenta 5, where he stood on the roof of the exhibition building shouting out first names in German through a gold-colored megaphone. Among his museum shows were "The Exhibition of Perfect" at the Busch- Reisinger Museum at Harvard (1983), "The Perfect Thought" at the University Art Museum at Berkeley and the Houston CAM (1990) and "The Perfect Moment" at IVAM, Valencia. He was represented by Michael Werner Gallery.

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