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For the first time, Christie's will mount an exhibition at the Moscow Kremlin, Oct. 7-8, 1997, of Impressionist and modern paintings slated for the auction block in New York (on Nov. 11). The project was organized in cooperation with the Russian oil company, Lukoil, and Russian culture minister Natalia Dementieva, and recalls the auctioneer's first transaction with Russia, James Christie's 1788 sale of a collection of Old Masters to Catherine the Great. Can an attempt to ignite a new auction market there be far behind?

Hildy and Ernst Beyeler
's art collection -- classic modern works by everyone from Bacon and Baselitz to Tobey and Warhol -- goes on public view on Oct. 21, 1997, in the new Fondation Beyeler in Riehen near Basel, Switzerland. Designed by Renzo Piano, the 4,000-square-meter facility has a projecting glass roof and resembles a ship lying anchored alongside the street. Inaugural shows include "Jasper Johns's Johns, Works Owned by the Artist," a selection of 50 works from the artist's recent retrospective at New York's Museum of Modern Art as well as a survey of works by Piano called "Renzo Piano: My Architectural Logbook." For more info go to Fondation Beyeler on the Web.

The Metropolitan Museum opens its first permanent gallery dedicated to photographs, Oct. 16, 1997-Feb. 1, 1998, with a show of 55 works from the Gilman Paper Company Collection. Named for collector Howard Gilman, the new gallery will present three shows a year drawn from Gilman holdings and from the Met's collection.

The Metropolitan Museum has named two new trustees, both leaders in high-tech industries. They are Michael R. Bloomberg, chair of Bloomberg Financial Markets and Bloomberg News, and Henry B. Schacht, chair of Lucent Technologies.

The Museum of Modern Art has mounted "A Decade of Collecting: Recent Acquisitions in Contemporary Drawings," Sept. 18, 1997-Jan. 13, 1998. So which contemporary artists get the MOMA seal of approval? Here's some: Marlene Dumas, David Hammons, Anish Kapoor, K'cho, Mike Kelly, Toba Khedoori, David Moreno, Gabriel Orozco, Raymond Pettibon, Kiki Smith, Luc Tuymans, Rachel Whiteread. Meanwhile, MOMA also acquired 15 works on paper by Ellsworth Kelly dating from the late '40s to the early '50s. The works come from the artist, part gift and part purchase.

To the surprise of local arts advocates, Republican Gov. George Pataki has given the New York State Council on the Arts a 1998 budget of $40.8 million, an increase of 15 percent from last year's $35.7 million. The increase is credited to the advocacy of long-time arts supporter Roy Goodman in the State Senate and NYSCA council chair Earle Mack, the New Jersey real-estate developer who is a major balletomane. Back in the roaring '80s NYSCA's budget topped $50 million, making New York number one in arts largesse.

Tanzania's Sukuma Museum has put its collection of East African art on the Web The site is supported by Hewlett Packard and is designed by Whitney Museum ISP alumn Mark Bessire, who spent a year at the museum as a Fulbright Fellow.

The Dia Center for the Arts has launched its latest Web art project, Prometheus Bound by Tim Rollins and K.O.S. The site features a series of conversations among members of Rollins's famed art workshop on Aeschylus's ca. 450 BC play about the horrible fate that befell the demigod who brought fire to humans, as well as Henry David Thoreau's translation of the play and a considerably more contemporary translation by Rollins and K.O.S.

The answer is yes for DCA Gallery, the New York arm of a consortium of Danish galleries, which is moving from SoHo to 525 West 22nd Street. Also opening in Chelsea is Dorfman Projects at 529 West 20th Street, #7E, debuting on Oct. 9 with new Czech blown-glass works by Lynda Benglis. Finally, go over there to visit the new three-story space of the formerly semi-private Alexander and Bonin at 132 Tenth Avenue at 18th Street, whose list of artists runs from John Ahearn and Matthew Benedict to Doris Salcedo and Paul Thek.

Into new digital media? Get thee to Harvestworks, New York's premier downtown nonprofit venue for such things. Harvestworks is entertaining applications for its artist-in-residence program, which provides up to 60 hours of editing time in its multimedia lab. Deadline Nov. 15, 1997. For application contact Harvestworks, 596 Broadway, #602, New York, N.Y. 10012.

Like art competitions? Here's one for you, that costs $25 to enter, is judged by the famed Russian emigre team of Komar and Melamid and wins you an online exhibition in a 3-D space presented by Premiere Graphics International. Applications are due by Oct. 20; for more info go to PremiereWorld

Recently received via the U.S. Postal Service: a subscription promo for DoubleTake, billed as the "new" Duke University quarterly magazine devoted equally to documentary photography and new writing (good luck -- remember Life?). So far, the mag has featured poetry by Annie Dillard and Tess Gallagher, stories by Joyce Carol Oates and Nadine Gordimer, and photographs by Jane Evelyn Atwood (blind French schoolkids), Paul D'Amato (Mexicans in Chicago) and Dan Eldon (killed at 22 by a mob while on assignment in Somalia). For your free copy write DoubleTake, 1317 West Pettigrew Street, Durham, N.C. 27705, or visit DoubleTake on the Web

The Aldrich Museum of Contemporary Art in Ridgefield, Conn., unveils a new work by Robert Perless in its sculpture garden on Oct. 4 from 3-5 p.m. Made from highly polished polycarbonate prisms and stainless steel, Fields Within Fields is a kinetic work that reacts to natural wind, light and heat.