Art Movements

This week in art news: archaeologists discovered a giant statue of Ozymandias in Cairo, Bali refused to cover up nude statues of Hindu deities during a visit by the king of Saudi Arabia, and the British Museum displayed a watercolor it discovered over ten years ago.

Henry Stanier, “Karnak” (1868), watercolor and bodycolor, 665 x 476 mm, British Museum 1994 (© The Trustees of the British Museum)

Art Movements is a weekly collection of news, developments, and stirrings in the art world.

Archaeologists discovered a 26-foot statue submerged in groundwater in east Cairo. The sculpture is thought to depict Pharaoh Ramses II, also known as Ramses the Great or Ozymandias.

Authorities on the Indonesian island of Bali refused to cover up nude statues and figures of Hindu deities ahead of a visit by the king of Saudi Arabia, Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud.

A watercolor by little-known artist Henry Stanier went on display alongside works by James Whistler and John Singer Sargent as part of the British museum’s Places of the Mind: British watercolour landscapes 1850–1950 exhibition. The watercolor, which depicts the Temple of Karnak in Egypt, was one of three paintings by the artist found at the museum by curator Kim Sloan over ten years ago. It’s still not known how the works entered the museum’s collection.

Jeff Koons was convicted of plagiarism by a French court over his 1988 ceramic sculpture “Naked.”

Iraqi archaeologists claim to have unearthed an Assyrian period palace underneath the Nebi Yunus shrine in Iraq. The site was discovered during a search of tunnels dug by ISIS. Archaeologists and reporters confirmed that much of the Mosul antiquities museum‘s collection has been completely destroyed after Iraqi forces retook the museum from ISIS earlier this week.

Art adviser Lisa Jacobs was ordered to pay back the $1 million she made from the sale of Jean-Michel Basquiat’s painting “Future Sciences Versus the Man” (1983) by the New York Supreme Court. Jacobs sold the painting on behalf of Michael Schulhof — the former president of Sony Pictures — but did not disclose the painting’s true sale price, pocketing $1 million in the process. Judge Charles Ramo ruled that Jacobs had committed fraud and breached a contract that set her fee for the sale at $50,000.

Art storage company ARCIS was granted permission to open a tax-free warehouse (known popularly as a “freeport“) in New York. The 100,000-square-foot facility will open in Harlem later this year.

The Art Handlers Alliance of New York relaunched its foundational Bill of Rights as an online petition. The organization is calling for a citywide adoption of the bill.

Police identified and arrested a man who attacked a security guard at the Metropolitan Museum of Art last week. Brandon Aebersold struck the guard with a glass bottle shortly after complaining that a painting was crookedly displayed.

Grayson Perry took to Twitter to crowdsource models for a pair of vases inspired by the UK’s EU Referendum. The two vases, dubbed “Leave” and “Remain,” will be unveiled as part of a new program on Channel 4.

Adrián Villar Rojas was selected to create the fifth site-specific installation for the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Roof Garden.

The New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission unanimously voted to grand landmark status to several of the Waldorf-Astoria‘s interiors.

The United States Copyright Office is soliciting feedback on current copyright laws from artists and photographers as part of a public study on moral rights for authors.


Salvador Dalí, “Figura de perfil” (1925), oil on board, 29 3/16 x 19 11/16 in (courtesy Gala-Salvador Dalí Foundation)

The Gala-Salvador Dalí Foundation acquired the artist’s 1925 painting, “Figure in profile.” The work was purchased at Bonhams for just over $2,196,000.

Harvard Art Museums received a $250,000 grant from the Terra Foundation for American Art.


Hong Ra-hee resigned from her posts as director general of Seoul’s Leeum, Samsung Museum of Art and director of the Ho-Am Art Museum. Ra-hee’s son, Lee Jae-yong — the acting head of Samsung Group — has been charged with embezzlement and bribery as part of the wider corruption investigation of South Korea’s impeached president, Park Geun-Hye.

Cooper Union laid off 14 members of its staff [via email announcement].

Christie’s announced that it will close down its London salesroom in South Kensington and scale back its operations in Amsterdam. According to the New York Times, the proposed changes may result in 250 layoffs.

Sonny Kalsi and Ellen Susman were appointed to the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden’s board of trustees. Jarrett Gregory joined the museum’s curatorial team.

Stephanie Rosenthal was appointed director of Martin-Gropius-Bau.

Susanne Gaensheimer will succeed Marion Ackermann as artistic director of the Kunstsammlung NRW (NRW Art Collection) in Düsseldorf.

Jennifer M. Williams was appointed deputy director of Prospect New Orleans.

Chus Martínez was appointed to curate Sculpture Park Cologne’s ninth exhibition program.

Tonya McCain was appointed program manager at the Cummer Museum of Art & Gardens.

Sheetal Prajapati was appointed director of public engagement at Pioneer Works.

Margaret Doyle will leave her post as director of communications at the Museum of Modern Art to join the public relations firm Polskin Arts & Communications.

Popular Photography will cease publication after its next issue.


Rineke Dijkstra, “Almerisa, Asylum seekers center Leiden, March 14, 1994” (1994) (© Rineke Dijkstra)

Rineke Dijkstra received the 2017 Hasselblad Award.

Kellie Romany received the Forward Arts Foundation’s 2016–2017 Emerging Artist Award.

Josh Mannis was awarded the 2017 NADA Artadia Award.


The Queens Museum launched an open call in conjunction with its upcoming exhibition, Marinella Senatore: La Piazza Universale/Social Stages. The museum is currently accepting song and sound submissions that will be used as inspiration for a new Queens anthem.

The National Gallery of Canada’s Canadian Photography Institute launched its first Research Fellowship Program.


Howard Hodgkin, “Snow Cloud” (2009–10) (© Howard Hodgkin, courtesy Gagosian; photo by Prudence Cuming Associates Ltd.)

Miriam Colón (1936–2017), actress. Founder of the Puerto Rican Traveling Theater in New York.

Paula Fox (1923–2017), novelist.

Spencer Hays (1936–2017), businessman and art collector.

Howard Hodgkin (1932–2017), artist.

Marian Javits (1925–2017), arts patron.

Ben Martin (1930–2017), photographer.

Misha Mengelberg (1935–2017), pianist and composer.

Robert Osborne (1932–2017), film historian and actor.

David Rubinger (1924–2017), photographer.

Irvine Sellar (1934–2017), property developer. Partnered with Renzo Piano on the construction of the Shard.

Louise Hopkins Underwood (1919–2017), co-founder of the Louise Hopkins Underwood Center for the Arts.

Boaz Vaadia (1951–2017), sculptor.

Dave Valentin (1952–2017), jazz flutist.

Leon Ware (1940–2017), music producer and writer.

Fred Weintraub (1928–2017), producer. Owner of The Bitter End coffeehouse.

Nancy Willard (1936-2017), children’s author and poet.

comments (0)