The famed Borghese Gallery in Rome has reopened to the public after a 13-year-long bureaucratic construction delay called "shameful" by culture minister Walter Veltroni. The museum was closed in 1984 after underground leaks threatened the building foundation. A tip to tourists: get a ticket to avoid the long lines.
JONES TO COLUMBIA
Artist and Yale University sculpture professor Ronald Jones is moving back to New York. He starts this summer as chair of the visual arts department of the reinvigorated graduate school of the arts at Columbia University. Former department head Alan Hacklin is now in charge of the Leroy Neiman print center there.
NEW MUSEUM CLOSES
The New Museum has closed to begin its long-awaited $2.3-million renovation and expansion of its facility at 583 Broadway in SoHo. Designed by Colin Cathcart of Kiss + Cathcart Architects, the project will expand the museum to the building's second floor and add 10,000 square feet. The museum's grand reopening is Dec. 4, 1997.
Former New York art dealer Todd Michael Volpe, a partner in the Jordan-Volpe Gallery on West Broadway in the late `70s and `80s, has been indicted for defrauding his Hollywood celebrity customers of more than $2.5 million. According to the federal indictment, Volpe sold counterfeit works, sold art that wasn't his, and sold work without paying the consignors. Among his clients were Joel Silver, Jack Nicholson, Barbara Streisand and Bruce Willis.
The Biennale de Lyon d'Art Contemporain opens July 7-Sept. 24, 1997. Harald Szeemann has curated the exhibition of over 60 artists, including Richard Serra, Bruce Nauman, Jeff Koons and Emery Blagdon, a Nebraska outsider artist who created assemblages he called "Healing Machines" until his death in 1986.
OUT LATE IN CHELSEA
Chelsea galleries are keeping late evening hours -- till 8 p.m. -- on Wednesday, July 9, for an extended "street-crawl through a grandly unified opening of the neighborhood's summer shows." Almost 30 galleries are participating; for more info contact Kelly Calanni at (212) 243-3753.
The Brooklyn Museum reopens its newly refurbished fifth floor galleries of American painting and sculpture on July 4, 1997. Over 175 works will be on view, ranging from Hiram Powers' The Greek Slave (1869) and Thomas Cole's The Pic-Nic (1846) to works by Noguchi, O'Keeffe, Sheeler, Stettheimer and Stuart Davis.
PHOTOS FOR MOCA
The Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art has received $600,000 from the Ralph M. Parsons Foundation to fund its 1995 purchase of a collection of documentary photographs from New York dealer and collector Robert Freidus. Including works by Diane Arbus, Robert Frank, Lee Friedlander, Helen Levitt, Danny Lyon, Garry Winogrand, the photos will henceforth be known as the Ralph M. Parsons Foundation Photography Collection.
The Basel Art Fair, June 11-18, reports attendance of 47,000, three percent more than last year. A total of 263 galleries from 21 countries presented works by more than 1,000 20th-century artists. Next year's installment, Art 29'98, is scheduled for June 10-15, 1998.