Crimes of the Art is a weekly survey of artless criminals’ cultural misdeeds. Crimes are rated on a highly subjective scale from one “Scream” emoji — the equivalent of a vandal tagging the exterior of a local history museum in a remote part of the US — to five “Scream” emojis — the equivalent of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum heist.
Wiener Mural Has Hoosier Hot and Bothered
The Spot Tavern in Lafayette, Indiana, has come under fire from one of its neighbors over a mural by the Droops on its exterior wall featuring a nude woman tied to a tree and a hot dog bun with a penis instead of a wiener.
Verdict: The most fantastic thing about this otherwise by-the-books small-town art story is this detail, from WISHTV’s report: “Nearby neighbor Ila Solomon started a petition online intended for Mayor Tony Roswarski. You may remember Ila Solomon for pleading guilty to trying to feed her husband to the birds.” Solomon’s strange past, which involves living with her husband’s corpse and collecting his benefits for as long as nine months after he’d died, is chronicled here.
Dishonest Abe Lovers Lift Lincoln Likeness
A large marble bust of Abraham Lincoln by the Italian sculptor Ivo Zini was stolen from the Gettysburg Hall of Presidents Museum.
Verdict: Perhaps the thieves felt they were merely emancipating the great emancipator.
Sandy Mural Capped
A public art project that artist Lisa Be made in Long Beach, Long Island, in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy was destroyed by a construction crew that had been instructed to preserve it. The mural, “CAPS for KIDS,” was a landscape made up of 50,000 colorful bottle caps that children throughout the city had collected.
Verdict: The construction crew must wish they’d kept a lid on this story.
Pencil Sculpture Rubbed Out
A 12-foot-tall sculpture of a pencil said to be worth $9,000 was stolen from the Purdue University campus in West Lafayette, Indiana.
Verdict: Perhaps the thieves are trying to send a message that Purdue should transition to a paperless campus.
Military Museum Robbed of WWII Gun on Veterans Day
Thieves struck the New Mexico Museum of Military History in the early-morning hours of Veterans Day, making off with a still-functioning World War II machine gun valued at $4,000.
Tagger Takes Down Towering Toys
Two murals of giant toys by the artist Dotmasters, intended to promote street art in the South London town of Croydon, were tagged by a graffiti artist who goes by “TIC” and is a member of the local Kaos Crew.
Verdict: Another chapter in the never-ending rivalry between graffiti and street art.
Scrooges Strike Christmas Art Fair
Karen Jewell, a vendor at this year’s Southern Christmas Show in Charlotte, North Carolina, lost hand-carved wooden sculptures worth $30,000 when thieves broke the lock on her hitch and made off with her trailer and all its contents.
Verdict: Trailer-loads of coal for those callous Christmas art thieves.
Hindus Bring Down Bovine Hindenburg
A polystyrene sculpture of a cow that hung from a helium balloon at the annual Jaipur Art Summit was taken down by Hindu activists and then handed over to police, who raided the summit and detained two artists for several hours.
Lewis’s tattered canvases and pasted over drawings mirror a world in need of constant upkeep and repair.
Seeing the Toronto Biennial of Art through my daughter’s eyes helped me push past some of its challenges by experiencing it on a primordial level.
Who says tragedy has to be tragic? Co-presented with National Black Theatre, this fresh, Pulitzer-winning take on a classic centers Black joy and liberation.
With its titular blend of Western culture and Asian ethnicity, Tyrus Wong’s “Chinese Jesus” painting embodies Asian American identity.
Prehistoric Planet is visually ambitious, but the docuseries often fails to contextualize those visuals for the curious viewer.
For the triennial’s eighth edition, work by more than 70 artists is featured in 12 exhibitions and a polyphonic program, installed at various locations throughout the German city.
Imelda Marcos and her husband were accused of plundering billions of dollars from the country.
Probably not, but it sure looks like one.
This exhibition explores the work and short-but-impactful life of the groundbreaking ceramic artist. Now on view at the New Orleans Museum of Art.
I won’t bother you with talk about how obscenely decadent and out of touch the Frieze art fair is. And yet…
Curators Tahnee Ahtone, La Tanya S. Autry, Frederica Simmons, Dan Cameron, and Jeremy Dennis offered the public a window into their curatorial processes through the work they produced during their fellowships.
As part of Hyperallergic’s Emily Hall Tremaine Journalism Fellowship for Curators, Jeremy Dennis presents an exhibition to offer insight into his curatorial process.