In a sensational front page story, today’s New York Times announces what the art world has long known: “Qatari Riches Are Buying Art World Influence.” Yes, the Qataris — and other Gulf monarchs — are rapidly amassing a motherlode of contemporary art, and in the process likely driving up art prices worldwide.
You may know Qatar as the home of Al Jazeera but this small kingdom in the Persian Gulf is proving itself a major contemporary art buyer, according to the Art Newspaper.
The Metropolitan Museum is raising its suggested admission prices for adults from $20 to $25, reports the New York Times. Good thing we’ll still be paying the ticket price with whatever change we have in our back pockets.
The National Endowment for the Arts now funds a hotly-debated form of art: video games. With the newly designated “Arts in Media” program, $10,000 to $200,000 grants from the organization can now be used to fund the production of digital games, multimedia art work and interactive applications.
The list of domestic spending cuts for the new national budget announced by the US government this morning includes $13 million in funding cuts for both the NEA and the NEH, but that’s just the start of the damage. $8.5 million has been cut from the NGA budget, and reduced funding to a program that supports Washington’s private artistic organizations by 75 percent.
This weekend, the usually free National Gallery of Art might not be. In fact, it could not be open at all. With the possibility of a government shutdown looming as a result of disagreements between Democrats and Republicans over the national budget, public museums may be the first institutions to close their doors at the end of this week.
Watch your back, art world. There’s a dark force quietly building on the margins, slowly growing strong on a diet of cheap print editions and Tumblr posts. Yes, it’s Jen Bekman’s Zombie Army, and they’re here to
EAT YOUR BRAINS sell you art!
Even after the website’s sale to AOL for $315 million, Huffington Post still declines to pay its volunteer bloggers. In reaction, Post contributors from art sites ArtScene and Visual Art Source have announced a “strike” against writing for the website. The action begs the question, how can art writing remain viable online?
Okay, so, this week is New York City’s art fair week. This may sound like a carnival replete with Ferris wheels, clowns and cotton candy, but it’s not, at least in the literal sense. An art fair is like a carnival in that there’s a lot of excess noise, visual information and people yelling over each other. But an art fair is actually a clearinghouse for art works, a pow-wow of dealers, galleries, curators and collectors that’s part tribe meeting and part shopping mall. n the US, the major players are basically Art Basel Miami Beach, a sister fair of Art Basel founded in 2002 occurring annually every December, and New York City’s Armory Show, founded in 1994 and taking place in March.
Website I Heart NY Museums by programmer Dan Nguyen is a super useful online mash-up of New York City museum data that shows you when each museum has admission-free hours. With this schedule, it’s easy to plan an exhibition itinerary that won’t leave you blowing $20 at MoMA.
British news sources are reporting that nearly a dozen protesters “set off alarms and threw fake £50 notes in the air at Sotheby’s before unfurling a large banner bearing the words ‘orgy of the rich.'” Another protest outside staged a mock auction of public workers. The actions were in response to the UK government’s proposed cuts to public services and the arts.
President Obama’s proposed budget for the 2012 fiscal year includes cuts to funding for the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) and the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH). Under the proposed budget, each organization’s budget would drop by 13 percent.