Morning Links

Morning Links: Stolen Thumb Edition

A terracotta warrior at the Franklin Institute.



This past December, a man attending an ugly sweater Christmas party at the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia stole the thumb of an ancient Chinese terracotta sculpture. But one could say the man shouldn’t have palmed the thumb, since he was caught red-handed with it when the police found it in a drawer in his home last month. [The Art Newspaper]

On Friday, the artist Parker Bright, who previously protested Dana Schutz’s Open Casket at the Whitney Biennial, started a Gofundme campaign to crowdfund a trip to Paris, where he plans to protest a Neïl Beloufa show at the Palais de Tokyo. The exhibition previously made use of Bright’s image without his consent, but in response to Bright’s recent efforts, Beloufa removed the artist’s appropriated picture from his project. [ARTnews]

A Pablo Picasso print from 1949 was stolen from DeLind Fine Art Appraisals in Milwaukee last week. Valued at $50,000, it was a prized print by the modernist artist. [Chicago Tribute/Associated Press]


Peggy Cooper Cafritz, who created one of the largest collections of art by African-American artists in the world, has died at age 70. Her goal had been to “bridge the great divides” between art and politics in Washington, D.C., where she was based for much of her life. [The Washington Post]

Thomas Heatherwick

Thomas Heatherwick, the architect behind the grand and grandly ugly structure Vessel in New York’s Hudson Yards, gets the New Yorker profile treatment. According to Heatherwick, the Vessel, its 154 intertwining staircases and all, is a “monument to us.” [The New Yorker]

A flashback: In September 2016, initial plans for the Vessel caused ARTnews executive editor Andrew Russeth to ask, “Can someone please stop the construction of Thomas Heatherwick’s $150 million monstrosity in Manhattan?” [ARTnews]


Could the Fondazione Prada transform Milan’s contemporary art scene? “It seems that the Prada Foundation sees its role in both civic and creative terms—neatly symbolised by its new tower, dominating the skyline of the often-ignored southern part of Milan,” the Economist notes in a new op-ed. [The Economist]

Gagosian Quarterly—yes, that’s right, the mega-gallery’s magazine—has unveiled a new website. Some of its latest offerings include Ed Ruscha in conversation with Nevada Museum of Art director JoAnne Northrup, Richard Phillips discussing the gallery’s Tom Wesselman show, and an essay on Andy Warhol’s portraiture. [Gagosian Quarterly]


Christie’s CEO Guillaume Cerutti explains why the art market has improved recently in a new Q&A with Kelly Crow. In particular, there’s growth in the Asian sector, he says: “There are major players coming from Hong Kong and continental China, but we’ve seen a major new bidder coming from Indonesia, too. So we’re seeing more diversification of bidders across Asia.” [The Wall Street Journal]

Old and New

In a new essay, Barry Schwabsky addresses the poet Frank O’Hara’s collaborations with the artist Mario Schifano. Though little-known to even the most dedicated O’Hara fans, their collaborations are the subject of a republished version of Words & Drawings, their 18-page book. [The New York Review of Books]

In a new interview with Carolina A. Miranda, done on the occasion of his first commercial solo exhibition in Los Angeles since 2002, at Hauser & Wirth, Mark Bradford discusses making art with Donald Trump in power. “This could be frightening or not frightening to say—but things are not as shocking,” Bradford says. “I think you have to believe that everything changes and everything is living.” [Los Angeles Times]

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