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ARCHAEOLOGY AFICIONADOS, TODAY IS YOUR DAY. A diver in Israel recently came across a number of objects, including a sizable sword likely used by a knight in the Crusades, NPR reports. “It is exciting to encounter such a personal object, taking you 900 years back in time to a different era,” an official with the nation’s Antiquities Authority said. (He’s got that right!) Meanwhile, in the Bavarian area of Germany, a grave has been found with an ornate ivory comb that dates back some 1,500 years, Smithsonian Magazine reports. The grooming tool may have been used for hair and beard maintenance, and some headline writers have declared the deceased a “hipster.” OK! Smithsonian also has a deep dive—pun intended—on a 500-year-old shipwreck in the Baltic Sea that is in unusually good condition.
LOST AND FOUND. More than 30 years after two marble angels from the 1600s were stolen from a church in Naples, they have been recovered, the Associated Press reports. It seems that a collector purchased them in an antique shop in that city around 20 years ago, and when he recently went to sell them in Avignon, France, a shopkeeper alerted police that they may have been purloined. The unnamed collector said he was unaware that the angels were hot and gave them up voluntarily. [AP]
On Tuesday, protestors who survived a notorious 1981 food poisoning in Spain temporarily occupied the gallery at the Prado that houses Diego Velázquez’s Las Meninas (1656). They demanded that the government cover the medical expenses of those affected by the incident. [Reuters]
A ceramic bowl on loan to the British Museum in London has been identified as an exceedingly rare Chinese piece that dates back almost a millennium. It had previously been catalogued as a Korean work; meticulous research by the scholar Regina Krahl changed that. [The Art Newspaper]
The Believer, the well-loved literary magazine founded in 2003, will cease publication with its February issue. It had been put out by the University of Nevada Las Vegas’s Black Mountain Institute. The school’s dean said that it “consumed a significant amount of BMI’s resources.” [Pitchfork]
Text artist Kay Rosen wrote about her peer Barbara Kruger’s current exhibition at the Art Institute of Chicago. Kruger, Rosen argues, “doesn’t scale up gratuitously for the sake of spectacle.” [Art in America]
Robert Haas, a leveraged-buyout expert who became an aerial photographer and a founder of the Haas Moto Museum & Sculpture Gallery in Dallas, died late last month at the age of 74. Among his most famous images was a flamboyance of flamingos gathered in the shape of a flamingo.
[The New York Times]
Williams College trustees voted to move forward with the design phase for a new home for the Massachusetts school’s vaunted art museum. [iBerkshires]
THE NEXT BIG PLAYER IN THE CRYPTO SPACE? It is none other than Martha Stewart, who will soon be offering a bevy of Halloween-themed NFTs, the Wall Street Journal reports. “I have been cool for a long time but I’m even more cool now,” she told the paper. Some of the tokens that Stewart is selling are tied to images of pumpkins that have been carved with Halloween costumes she has worn. One notable piece: a jack-o’-lantern tribute to Richard Prince’s “Nurse” series. That sounds like a good thing. [WSJ via Fox Business]