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POLICE BLOTTER. The San Francisco gallery owner caught on video spraying water from a hose on a homeless woman outside his storefront has been charged with misdemeanor battery, according to KRON4. The man, Collier Gwin, initially defended his actions, but later apologized. “The alleged battery of an unhoused member of our community is completely unacceptable,” the city’s district attorney, Brooke Jenkins, said. Meanwhile, a former employee of the New Bedford Whaling Museum in Massachusetts has been charged with stealing artifacts worth more than $75,000 from its collection, the Standard-Times reports. The suspect was arrested after selling material to an area coin and jewelry buyer, who became suspicious, found the items on the museum’s website, and contacted police. Collection digitization efforts: They pay off!
THE TOP JOB. After 15 years as director of the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía in Madrid, Manuel Borja-Villel said that he will not put his name forward for a fourth term, El País reports. Borja-Villel has been with Spain’s national museum of modern and contemporary art since 2008, and has won both praise and criticism for his politically engaged programming. Artists celebrated in exhibitions during his tenure included Martín Ramírez, Nancy Spero, Paul Thek, Rosemarie Trockel, and many more. Departing his post at the end of this week, Borja-Villel will next focus on co-curating the 2023 São Paulo Bienal, which will open in September. The selection process for his successor in the post—one of the world’s most prestigious—will begin February 1. Good luck to all applicants.
The estate of artist Winfred Rembert, who died in 2021, will now be represented by powerhouse Hauser & Wirth and Fort Gansevoort, which has spaces in New York and Los Angeles. Rembert posthumously won a Pulitzer Prize for his memoir last year, and his paintings on carved leather are increasingly in demand. [ARTnews]
An amethyst cross worn by Princess Diana at various times was purchased by a rep for Kim Kardashian at a Sotheby’s auction on Wednesday for £163,800 (about $202,000). The 1920s pendant was created by jewelry designer Garrard and loaned to the princess by businessman Naim Attallah. [The Guardian]
The next Met Gala’s co-chairs are screenwriter and actress Michaela Coel, actress Penélope Cruz, tennis king Roger Federer, singer Dua Lipa, and Vogue chief Anna Wintour. The May 1 event’s dress code: “In honor of Karl Lagerfeld,” the late designer who is the subject of the show opening that night at the Met’s Costume Institute. [The Associated Press]
These are dark days in the NFT market, and journalist Nate Freeman looked at the state of play. One development: Last year, a venture called Unsellable started buying NFTs that are essentially worthless for a penny, allowing their sellers to take a tax write-off. [Vanity Fair]
Quarterback Tom Brady appears to be a fan of the latest Yayoi Kusama–Louis Vuittoncollaboration. The Tampa Bay Buccaneer was recently spotted carrying a bag from the collection; his ex-wife, model Gisele Bündchen, stars in the advertising campaign for the luxury pieces. [Page Six]
RETURN OF THE REAL. The Indianan photographer Dayanita Singh currently has the largest show of her career up at the Villa Stuck in Munich, Germany, and spoke with the New York Times about her acclaimed practice . As a kind of countermeasure against the art market, Singh spurns signed and numbered editions in favor of photography collections that she sometimes houses in wooden boxes and allows people to reconfigure as they see fit. And while she works with a commercial gallery, she also sells directly to buyers at events. “What art can be disseminated better than photography?” Singh asked the Times. “Yet photography got limited—it got amputated almost—with the dictates of the art world, to give it value.” [NYT]