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MONDAY CRIME BLOTTER. Italian authorities confiscated three looted artifacts that date back more than 2,300 years and returned them to Mexico, Reuters reports. Some people close Christian Rosa, the artist accused of hawking forged Raymond Pettibons, say he may be hiding out from federal charges in Portugal, according to Vanity Fair . Thieves made off with more than 40 prized bottles of wine from a restaurant and hotel in Caceres, Spain, the Associated Press says. One is an 1806 Chateau d’Yquem valued at more than $400,000. “They were professionals, they knew exactly what they were doing,” an owner of the business said. A show at the North Dakota State University in Fargo is looking at the unsolved case of a Richard Diebenkorn print stolen from the school in 1975, per the Grand Forks Herald. And MCH Group, which owns Art Basel, said that it was “hit by a criminal cyber-attack using malware,” ARTnews reports. The company said personal data may have been accessible to the hackers and that it was investigating. It has filed a criminal complaint.
HISTORY’S MYSTERIES. An archaeologist combing through land as part of the HS2 high-speed rail project in England has termed the discoveries at the site as of the “once-in-a-lifetime” variety, the Washington Post reports. Among the ancient Roman artifacts uncovered are two busts, a statue of a child’s head, and a rare glass jug with a blue-green color. (The researchers found a lone analog of the jug at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.) Meanwhile, the Guardian visited the submerged Roman “party town” of Baiae, near Naples, Italy, which is popular with scuba-diving tourists. Emperors Augustus, Caligula, and Nero all had homes in the area.
After 38 years in business (and 65 stands at art fairs), the stalwart Seattle art dealer Greg Kucera has sold his namesake gallery to an employee, Jim Wilcox. Kucera, who will gradually phase himself out of the business, is moving to a castle in southern France he purchased with his partner and a friend. [The Seattle Times]
Berkshire Hathaway billionaire (and amateur architect) Charlie Munger gave $200 million to the University of California, Santa Barbara, on the condition that it build a dorm he envisions with windowless bedrooms (to encourage students to socialize). An architect on the school’s Design Review Committee quit to protest the plan, writing that the concept “as a place for students to live is unsupportable from my perspective as an architect, a parent, and a human being.” [CNN]
The late New York dealer Neil Zukerman and his husband, jewelry designer and accountant Tom Shivers, assembled a formidable collection of Surrealist art that is particularly strong in Leonor Fini. Following Zukerman’s death earlier this year, Shivers is overseeing the sale and donation of some works—and some are headed to the forthcoming Skylands Museum of Art in Lafayette, New Jersey. [The New York Times]
Rollins College in Winter Park, Florida, unveiled a statue, by Paul Day, of one of its most famous alums: Fred McFeely Rogers, aka children’s television legend Mister Rogers. “This inspirational sculpture will be a permanent reminder of the ideals and values modeled by Mister Rogers,” the school’s president said. [Associated Press]
The Sag Harbor, New York, home of Le Bernardin chef Eric Ripert features a Tibetan Buddhist painting, a 12-foot-tall Buddha statue, and a work by Valentino Cortazar. [Architectural Digest]
JUST THE FACTS. Later this month, Herzog & de Meuron’s M+ museum will open in Hong Kong, and other projects it has designed are nearing completion, and so Jacques Herzog sat for an interview with the Guardian . He was characteristically outspoken. Creating spectacular, iconic buildings is “boring” and “stupid,” Herzog said. And at another point, he questioned the worldview of some of his peers. “Architects feel very important about their role in the world,” he said. “They say, hey, we have to do this and this and then they do congresses and symposia and they speak about this and that. I have to say that I have huge doubts. Architecture is the art of facts. You do a building or you don’t, and if you do a building, do it right. We shouldn’t have a moralistic standpoint. But make things so that they work, they are sustainable and they are beautiful.” [The Guardian]