OpinionWeekend

Required Reading

This week, VIP art fair, Gugg Berlin closing, Lucian Freud and Yayoi Kusama in London, ideology and housing projects, biodegradable Legos, elderly hipsters (circa 2062) talk about social media and Murakami in Qatar.

 This year’s VIP art fair was a non-starter in terms of an art story. Should we be surprised? I mean, who thought an online marketplace could be exciting particularly since they’ve been around for decades? But that didn’t stop people from trying to report on it with their own spin. Seems like this year’s version of the VIP online art fair gets mixed reviews from the galleries, according to Gallerist. Artinfo said the same thing a few days before. And I have no idea why New York Timesreviewed” the fair.

 Guggenheim’s Berlin outpost will be closing.

 Director of the National Portrait Gallery, Sandy Nairne, introduces the first ever exhibition devoted to Lucian Freud’s portraiture in this video (05:30) on the Financial Times website.

 Architect Lebbeus Woods takes aim at Michel Kimmelman’s recent New York Times article that contrasted the publicly owned public housing disaster that was Priutt-Igoe in St. Louis, and the privately owned (and considered successful) South Penn housing project in Chelsea, Manhattan:

“The message, according to Michael Kimmelman’s article is that private enterprise works, whereas government doesn’t. It is a message that fits almost perfectly into the American political ideology of today — ‘let’s get government out of people’s lives and let the free market run things!’ — and it’s a point of view that seems vindicated by this one comparative example. But like most things it’s not quite that simple.”

 The Guggenheim store is now selling the first biodegradable “Lego” blocks, which are made of a composite of the bark of the cedar tree, compressed dust from sawn cedar logs, coffee beans and other materials.

 Chloe Nelkin has been doing a great job blogging recently and her recent post on the Tate Modern’s new Yayoi Kusama show gives you a taste of the show.

 Kusama takes a swipe at fellow dot-painter Damien Hirst:

“I have done all the work myself, not assistants. That’s why I’m in a wheelchair, I’ve been doing it physically – it’s hard labour – throughout my life.”

 

 It appears the work of Edgar Degas, particularly his sculptures, are an attribution/authentication nightmare.

 Social Media Week has published a hilarious promo video with a great premise:

“In the year 2062, a bunch of elderly hipsters are interviewed about the good old days of social media.”

 Want to laugh some more? Check out this site that posts examples of people on Facebook who think The Onion’s fake stories are real. Sad/funny. (h/t Kottke)

 Creative Review has a peak at the new Takashi Murakami show in Qatar that includes a six-meter-high inflatable self-portrait of the artist. The show is appropriately titled Ego.

 And finally, in case you missed it … postcolonial political tensions flared up a few weeks ago at Documenta 13 because two Argentinian artists wanted to ship a 36-ton meteorite from Argentina to Kassel, Germany for the exhibition. The Moqoit First Nation group considers the meteorite sacred and it appears Documenta will not allow it to travel without the endorsement of the Moqoit.

Required Reading is published every Sunday morning-ish, and it is comprised of a short list of art-related links to long-form articles, videos, blog posts or photo essays worth a second look.

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