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COLLECTION MANAGEMENT. The Bruce Museum in Greenwich, Connecticut, said that it has received a gift from an anonymous local couple of 70 artworks by major American and European figures, including Pablo Picasso, Mary Cassatt, and Alberto Giacometti, the Associated Press reports. The Bruce’s director, Robert Wolterstorff, termed the donation “unprecedented in its scale and quality. The museum is currently undergoing a $60 million expansion that is set for a March 2023 completion. Meanwhile, the Toledo Museum of Art in Ohio will sell three Impressionist pieces next month at Sotheby’s, with the aim of raising as much as $64 million for its acquisition fund, Katya Kazakina reports in Artnet News. The works are by Paul Cézanne, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, and Henri Matisse. The TMA holds other examples by each, and its director, Adam M. Levine, said that the new funds will double its acquisitions endowment and “allow us to diversify our collection, seeking beauty without bias.”
SPEAKING OF MATISSE, a triumvirate of august museums is collaborating on what sounds like a sure-fire blockbuster about the artist, the New York Times reports. “Matisse in the 1930s” will open at the Philadelphia Museum of Art in October with more than 100 works, and then travel to the other two institutions involved in the project, the Musée de l’Orangerie in Paris (next February) and the Musée Matisse Nice in France (that June). Among the works in the show will be Le Chant (1938), a sprawling painting commissioned for the Manhattan home of collector and politician Nelson Rockefeller.
A 1969 Picasso painting from the estate of actor Sean Connery will be auctioned at Christie’s in Hong Kong on May 26 with an estimate equivalent to about $19 million. The Finding Forrester star began collecting in the 1980s, and “cared about painting a lot,” according to his son, Stephane Connery, who is an art adviser. [Financial Times]
The Court of Appeal in the United Kingdom has been asked to review the recent court decision acquitting four activists of criminal charges over the tearing down of a statue of slave trader Edward Colston in Bristol. Attorney General Suella Braverman made the request “to clarify the law around protests,” she said. The process will not alter the verdicts in the case. [BBC News]
Journalist Judd Tully spoke with Jean-Michel Basquiat’s sisters, Lisane Basquiat and Jeanine Heriveaux, about the exhibition that they have curated of their brother’s work at the Starrett-Lehigh Building in Manhattan’s West Chelsea neighborhood. [ARTnews]
In London next month, Sotheby’s will present a show of portraits of British queens as part of the platinum jubilee celebrations marking Elizabeth II’s 70 years on the throne. No fewer than 50 tiaras will also be on hand, joining Andy Warhol’s depiction of Elizabeth II and the “Armada Portrait” of Elizabeth I, among other artworks. [The Guardian]
Painter Stanley Whitney got the profile treatment in advance of a show of his work that will open during the Venice Biennale next week. That exhibition is being presented by New York’s Albright-Knox Art Gallery (soon to become the Buffalo AKG Art Museum), which will mount a 2024 Whitney retrospective.
[The Wall Street Journal]
Artist William Wegman shot an Hermès Bolide bag—retail price: $21,300—for a Vanity Fair column. Naturally, a Weimaraner holds the accessory in the picture. [Vanity Fair]
THE RELIABLY INVENTIVE AND IMPOSSIBLE-TO-CATEGORIZE artist Seth Price just opened a show of paintings at Sadie Coles HQ in London, and spoke with the Guardian about that age-old medium . “Painting is like a historically perfectly evolved art form,” he told the paper. “It’s like the way a cockroach or a shark is perfectly evolved. Of course, it does continue to evolve . . .” The quotation goes on from there, but it cannot be published in this family friendly newsletter. Want even more Price? In 2018, he published a lively diary about his media consumption in ARTnews. [The Guardian]