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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.
Bronze Dog Bolts
A bronze dog that was part of Glenna Goodacre’s installation “Park Place” in the Albuquerque Museum of Art and History‘s sculpture garden has been stolen. The 100-pound canine, nicknamed “Sparky” by visitors and museum staff, was sawed from its concrete base.
Verdict: Police would have better luck collaring the criminal if Sparky had been collared.
Meth Smugglers Find Inspiration in Art Supplies
Australia’s Federal Police seized $900 million worth of liquid methamphetamine that was being smuggled into the country in the guise of art supplies and silicone bra liners. The 190 liters of meth in the bra liners and 530 liters disguised as art supplies would have amounted to 3.6 million hits of meth.
Verdict: This is not the way to get the youth hooked on art.
Enter the Wu-Tang Legal Chambers
The Long Island-based artist Jason Koza, who previously claimed that his drawings of members of the Wu-Tang Clan had been used without his permission in the album art for Once Upon a Time in Shaolin… (see Crimes of the Art #48), is suing RZA, the producer Cilvaringz, online auction site Paddle8, and the buyer of the only copy of the album, Martin Shkreli, for copyright infringement.
Verdict: Who would’ve imagined, when this whole multi-million-dollar, single-copy album scheme was first announced, that the whole thing would backfire so spectacularly? Oh wait, everyone.
Airline Sued for Fontana’s Bumpy Flight
American Airlines and seven art and luggage handling companies — Elite Systematic Arts, MainFreight, CDG Handling, ARC Transport, World Freight, Socièté Nouvelle Cornu Emballeurs, and Kraft ELS AG — are being sued for damage sustained by Lucio Fontana’s slash painting “Concetto Spaziale” (1955–60) when it was shipped from Paris to New York City for last year’s Armory Show art fair.
Verdict: What was that blue chip art doing on American Airlines in the first place? Everyone knows Singapore Airlines is the preferred airline of masterpieces.
Dino Sculpture Used for Jurassic-Size Prank
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A 25-foot-long sculpture of a triceratops was moved into the middle of the road overnight, allegedly by drunken pranksters, in the village of Godshill on the Isle of Wight. The large sculpture had been dragged there from nearby Island Gems, a store that sells gems and fossils.
Verdict: If this is all an elaborate Island Gems publicity stunt, we think it’s T-rexxic.
Ring of Temple Looters Busted
Four men were arrested for robbing 21 temples throughout India over the course of more than a decade. Police also recovered a silver Parshwanath Maharaj idol that the gang stole from a Jain temple. A jewelry dealer suspected of buying much of their loot was also arrested.
Verdict: On top of their official sentence, ransacking 21 temples entitles these looters to several lifetimes of bad karma.
Motives Behind Glass Art Theft Remain Opaque
Verdict: The thief probably realized that the sculpture he’d stolen is horribly gaudy.
Ice Dragon Grounded
A 300-pound sculpture of a dragon’s head created by first-time ice artist Rob Kimmel at the 2016 Northampton Ice Art Festival was smashed within hours of its completion. Several sculptures at last year’s Northampton Ice Art Festival met with similar fates (see Crimes of the Art #1).
Verdict: Whoever did this must have a block of ice where his heart should be.
The autumn holiday of Sukkot continues to offer solace and community for new generations.
Equity should be discussed in the form of European and American institutions partnering with the Benin government to create sustainable museums.
This exhibition in Great Falls, Montana addresses the concept of intention in contemporary fiber art and its complex relationship with the history of women’s art as craft.
Yamasaki’s most well-known projects — the twin towers and the Pruit-Igoe housing project — were both destroyed on national television.
An exquisitely illustrated and enlightening new book reveals the screen’s unique role in Japanese history and culture from its origins to the 20th century.
Explore new avenues in artistic practice and scholarship amongst a diverse cohort of peers while gaining leadership skills both academically and professionally.
Find the perfect gifts for friends and family.
There is nothing extraordinary about Murphy’s subjects and yet there is something inexplicably disturbing about her paintings and drawings.
In this exhibition, curated by Patrick Flores and presented by Taipei Fine Arts Museum, Paiwan artist Sakuliu reflects on interspecies co-sharing and coexistence.
Participatory photography aims to counter the pitfalls of photography as an exploitative or voyeuristic medium.
This week, a Frank Stella is installed as a public artwork in NYC, the women behind some iconic buildings, looting Cambodia, fighting anti-boycott laws, and more.
An Original Copy of US Constitution Sells for $43.2 Million, Becoming Most Expensive Document Ever Sold
MoMA board member Ken Griffin went well over asking for the document, beating out cryptocurrency enthusiasts who crowdfunded to purchase it.