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A1 News Roundup

The (Shocking!) Armory Show Turns 100


The (Shocking!) Armory Show Turns 100
The original Armory Show of 1913


Roughly 500 years ago a Spanish conquistador is believed to have brought the tomato back to Europe, changing the nature of Continental food forever. One hundred years ago, the Europeans finally returned the favor in the form of the 1913 Armory Show exhibition, the artist-organized show on 25th Street and Lexington Avenue that introduced avant-garde art to America. They got pizza, we got Warhol (and domination of the contemporary art market... and pizza too). Expect to read plenty more about the immense aftereffects of that exhibition as the year goes on, but here are a few places to start:  

Making the "New" the New Standard — Critic Christopher Knight considers the legacy of the show, laying out how it shaped the preoccupations of art to come. (LAT)

Hear NPR on the Show That "Shocked the Country" — Also, scroll down to see the photo of Duchamp standing in front of his Nude during the 50th anniversary celebration of the show. (NPR)

Americans Were Radical Too, You Know — The Continental artists who sparked the bulk of the outrage were also joined by homegrown avant-gardists Marsden Hartley and John Marin. (TAN

"Wigglety­wagglety­wigglety" — That was the establishment's idea of critiquing the show, as you can see from the New York Times's original coverage of the exhibition. (Berkeley)

Teddy Roosevelt Wasn't Fond of It Either — In a voluminous review he penned for Outlook, the president took on the "European extremists" with the same zeal he employed in routing the Spaniards at San Juan Hill. (Artinfo)


"Lately, people just think that contemporary art is something there to pass the time of the wealthy, or because everybody else is doing it or because openings are cool and fashionable. We need to remind ourselves that contemporary art is first of all a form of conceptual gymnastics, in which we learn to coexist with what we don't understand." — Massimiliano Gioni, director of special exhibitions at the New Museum and curator of the upcoming Venice Biennale (the youngest to do so in a century), in an insightful Wall Street Journal profile


Massive Fire Destroys Art at Pratt — A four-alarm blaze ripped through the work of art students at the Brooklyn art school, and firefighters are investigating the disaster as possible arson. (NYM

Emoji Art History Goes Viral — If you haven't encountered this charming meme yet, enjoy. (Hyperallergic

Change of Direction for Jewish Museum —Claudia Gould, the recently appointed director of the Jewish Museum, discusses her plans to for the programming at the Upper East Side institution, which include taking more advantage of its collection of over 25,000 works. (NYT)

Good Enough to Eat — For a special Fashion Week issue, artist Will Cotton did a photo spread with Elle Fanning, decking the actor and teen fashion icon out in confectionary outfits that pulled from both the latest styles and what would seem to be the world's most avant-garde candy store. (NYM)

Kim Gordon Is "Not Interested in Talking About 1993” — But the Sonic Youth musician, whose album "Experimental Jet Set, Trash, and No Star” has given its title to the New Museum's new show about that year, is happy to talk instead about 1994, when Kurt Cobain committed suicide among other landmark events. (NYT

The World According to Gillick — Columbia University has selected artist and faculty member Liam Gillick to serve as the 38th Bampton Series speaker, providing Gillick a platform to present a four-part series on the history of modernism, which covers over 150 years of art history. (Columbia

Who Loves the Sun? Marc Jacobs — The fashion designer took inspiration from the artificial sun that dominated Olafur Elíasson's 2003 "Weather Project" at Tate Modern for his Fashion Week show, having his models strut in front of a similar glowing orange orb. (NYT)

Adel Abdessemed Opens Up — The controversial (some would say notorious) artist speaks to Coline Milliard about his influences—and "mentions of Brecht, Kafka, Nietzsche, Dostoyevsky, and Goya pepper his speech and his work"—and outlines a defense for his brutal art, which has made him the star of a Pompidou survey and "one of France's most successful artists in recent years." (Modern Painters)  

Shakeup at El Museo del Barrio — Margarita Aguilar, who took over the directorship of the Harlem museum in 2006 from the much-loved Julián Zugazagoitia, has departed from the museum at a time of numerous challenges, from mounting budgetary woes, repeated rounds of layoffs, a reduction in museum hours, a two-month staff furlough, and questions about incoming chief curator Chus Martinez. (NYT

"My Public Persona Is Actually Great Material" — The irrepressible actor/artist/you-name-it James Franco sits down for a lunch with the august FT to discuss his new "Gay Town" show at Peres Projects in Berlin, continuing his practice of inventing an ambivalent sexual persona for himself in the vein of his lookalike idol James Dean's posthumously known biography. (FT)

The Love Critic Is In — For this year's Valentine's Day, Ben Davis once again adopted the vermillion beret of his alter ego, the Love Critic, dispensing wit, wisdom, and kind-hearted critique to art lovers in need. (Artinfo)

The Virtues of Age — There's no substitute for actually having been there, as Holland Cotter underscores in his deep-dive review of the New Museum's 1993 show, discussing the art climate of that year with an intimacy and grasp available only to an art critic who had lived through the time as a professional. (NYT

Cooper Union Creeps Closer to Charging Tuition — Artists, faculty, and students have long been vocally protesting the lower Manhattan art school's gradual move away from its historically tuition-free status, but school president Jamshed Bharucha gives little hope that the school will be "free as air and water," as its founder intended, for much longer. (NYT

Artist Andrea Mary Marshall Doesn't Like "Gallery Girls" — That's one of the gems you'll take away from this all-encompassing interview with the provocative photographer and painter. (Artinfo


Sotheby's London Contemp Auction Garners $116.4 Million — Hitting the middle of its pre-sale estimate, the evening found continued strong demand for Gerhard Richter (with a 1976 photo-realist painting and a 1992 abstraction selling for $11.9 million and $12.8 million, respectively, though three out of nine works of his offered failed to find buyers) and set an artist record for Adrian Ghenie ($189,720 for a 2011 painting of Dr. Mengele). (Artinfo)

Christie's Nails a $127.7 Million London Contemp Sale — The auction houseshot past its high estimate, setting records for Peter Doig ($11.9 million for a 1991 canvas, past the $10 million paid for a canoe painting in 2007 that briefly made him the world's most expensive living artist—and more than 20 times the amount the seller paid in 2002), Allen Jones ($3.4 million for a 1969 assemblage piece), and Pierre Soulages ($5.1 million for a 1961 black abstraction, which went for more than seven times its high estimate). (Artinfo

Phillips London Contemp Sale Pulls in $15 Million — The top lots were a 1982 untitled Basquiat for $2.5 million and a 1997 black-and-white pattern painting by Christopher Wool for $2.6 million, while artist records were set for Nate Lowman ($522,728 for a 2005 bullet-hole painting) and Ryan Sullivan ($141,438 for a 2011 abstract painting) in a sale presided over by Alexander Gilkes, filing in for the now-gone Simon de Pury. (Artinfo

Five Insider Takes on the Auctions — Kelly Crow talks to a seller, an artist, an auctioneer, a gallerist, and an art advisor for their perspectives on the week's sales. (WSJ)  

The Upper East Side Gallery Explosion — Dealer Alex Zachary was one of the first to notice the subversive possibilities of using the real-estate crash to take a scrappy downtown-style gallery up to  a suddenly affordable spot in the city's poshest neighborhood in 2010, but now so many other contemporary art galleries have opened up there that Zachary and his partner, Peter Currie, have decided to decamp for Harlem. (Gallerist NY

Listen to the Insanely Catchy Invite to Michael Riedel's New Show — The artist didn't mess around with the Kraut-pop song he composed to lure people to his solo show at David Zwirner, "PowerPoint." (Artinfo

See Highlights of ARCO Madrid — The esteemed international art fair in the Spanish capital saw good commerce but felt a bit sparse this year. (Artinfo)

New Representative for Hujar — Moving from Matthew Marks, the estate of celebrated late photographer Peter Hujar will now be represented by Pace/McGill Gallery. (Baer Faxt) 

Moving Image Art Fair Releases Exhibitors — The video-art fair that is now a section of the Armory Show will have 28 displays that will include work by Michel Auder and Nina Yeun. (Gallerist NY)

Mark Bradford Decamps — The star painter has left Sikkema Jenkins & Co. after nine years with the gallery, and there's some talk that he may be headed toward Gagosian. (Gallerist NY

Check Out David Zwirner's New Gallery — It's on 20th Street, and it's really big. (Artinfo

— IN & OUT —

Leading Edward Steichen collectors Jackie and Richard Hollander have made a massive gift for 142 works by the legendary photographer, to be split between the Whitney Museum, LACMA, and Northwestern University's Leigh Block Museum of Art. (NYT)

The artist-grant-giving organization Artadia, founded by Artspace's own chairman, Christopher Vroom, has expanded to Los Angeles as the beginning of a broader period of growth. (Artinfo

JR has opened his first Japanese solo show at the Watari Museum of Contemporary Art, and he discusses the exhibition, titled "Could Art Change the World?", here. (Artinfo)

The Noguchi Museum has named independent curator Dakin Hart as its new senior curator. (Gallerist NY)

Independent Curators International has announced that Renaud Proch will serve as its new executive director, replacing Kate Fowle, who will move to a director-at-large position with ICI while also acting as the chief curator of the Garage Center for Contemporary Culture in Moscow. (ICI)

The High Line is on the hunt for a new executive eirector now that Robert Hammond will be stepping down from the position, with Joshua David serving as the park’s president. (Baer Faxt)

Berlin-based gallery VeneKlasen Werner has added independent curator Gyonata Bonvicini as a new director. (Baer Faxt)

Christie's Asia chairman Ken Yeh has taken a post handling Asian sales for Acquavella after 16 years with the auction house. (NYT)

David Salle now has a column in Town & Country magazine (it's true!). (Gallerist NY

Watch a video the Getty Research Center put together about the seminal Swiss curator Harald Szeemann, whose "When Attitudes Becomes Form" show is in the DNA of every major biennial or international exhibition these days. (Gallerist NY

The Walker Art Center held its sophomore Internet Cat Video Festival, no doubt triggering that asteroid to crash into the Earth. (Artinfo)


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