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THE ART BUYERS. With Miami Basel in full swing, it is a fine time to check in with collectors. Crypto kingpin Justin Sun, who has dropped more than $100 million on art in 2021 (on Picasso, Giacometti, and more), told Artnet News that he will showcase some of his holdings in the metaverse. Amy Phelan shared with the Art Newspaper what she and her husband, John, have been snapping up. Asked which work she would save in a fire, she replied, “There is no way to answer this—I would die in the fire!” Artsy spoke with French stylist Agnès b. about how she became a street-art aficionado. And Robb Report took a look at a house in Paradise Valley, Arizona, originally built for collectors Bill and Ilene Smith. It’s on the market for $9.5 million.
BACK IN ACTION. For nearly two years, there has been little news of art museums opening. Finally, though, that has begun to change, with M+ in Hong Kong and the Munch Museum in Oslo, Norway, both swinging open their doors recently. Now the Seoul Museum of Craft Art has joined them, officially inaugurating its home in the center of the South Korean capital on Monday, the Korea Herald reports. The institution includes some 23,000 craft objects, including pieces designated by the government as treasures. Because of the pandemic, attendance is capped at 450 for each 80-minute visitation window throughout the day.
Los Angeles dealers have been invading New York recently (a reversal of the usual state of play). They are eager to introduce their artists to the market (before their Manhattan competitors do), Jori Finkel reports, and some have been lured by real-estate deals stemming from the pandemic. [The Art Newspaper]
Archaeologists in Israel have said that they have found ruins that may be evidence of the story of Hanukkah, though not all researchers agree. Candida Moss examined at the case. [The Daily Beast/Yahoo! News]
The one-name milliner and fashion designer Adolfo, who made hats for Lady Bird Johnson and outfits for Nancy Reagan, has died at 98. The heiress, designer, and artist Gloria Vanderbilt was among his first clients; he called her “my inspiration.” [The New York Times]
A lacquer screen by Pham Hau (1903–95) that was once owned by the final Vietnamese emperor sold for about HK$9.7 million (some US$1.24 million), more than twice its high estimate, at Bonhams in Hong Kong. [The Straits Times]
The Birmingham Museums Trust in England is aiming to raise about £25,000 ($33,300) from the public to conserve Edward Burne-Jones’s 1890 Star of Bethlehem—reputed to be the largest watercolor in the world at the time—and the Holy Grail tapestries made by Burne-Jones with John Henry Dearle and William Morris. [BBC News]
Alicia Keys, Cardi B, and Lizzo are just a few of the musicians performing at bacchanals around Miami this Art Basel. Page Six surveyed the luxurious revelries that are on offer to the elect. [Page Six]
THE QUEEN OF CAKES PASSES. Cake maker Sylvia Weinstock, whom Bon Appétit magazine once termed “the Leonardo da Vinci of wedding cakes,” died last week at the age of 91, the New York Times reports. Weinstock’s clients included Ruth Bader Ginsburg, LeBron James, and numerous other celebrities, and she won renown for ornamenting her creations with precisely rendered sugar flowers. “We never count the flowers on a cake,” she once said. “Rather, we add, and add, and add until it pleases the eye.” [The New York Times]