It seems like ever other month a new painting by an Old or New Master is being rediscovered after a stint of obscurity in someone’s palazzo, basement, yard sale, or, in this case, in museum storage. London’s National Gallery, which you’d think would know exactly what it had, has discovered what they believe to be a painting of Girolamo Fracastoro, the man who “discovered” syphilis, by the great Venetian Renaissance painter Titian.
This week, Knoedler scandal update, pleasure of art, how Cecil Beaton saved the Queen, Philippe Starck talks creativity/$/sex, rare African art, ringtone drama, Montreal artists remember slain homeless man, Rupert Murdoch’s art tweets, NY streets and the capital of Stolen Islamic art.
Ai Weiwei’s Sunflower Seeds at the Tate’s Turbine Hall space in London opened to a good deal of rejoicing. Viewers and critics alike were entranced by the installation, a field of 100 million sunflower seeds that were actually carved from porcelain. An abundance of press photos show exhibition-goers frolicking in piles of seeds, tossing them up into the air, making seed-angels and having a great time. HOWEVER! The Tate has since been forced to alter Ai’s exhibition due to health hazards: the tons of porcelain seeds were kicking up a fine ceramic dust, easily breathed into the lungs of art aficionados. Visitors can now only gaze at Ai’s piece from a cordoned off observation deck.