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TODAY WAS THE BIG DAY. The family of the pioneering Samsung head Lee Kun-hee, who died last year, revealed details about how they plan to deal with his $20 billion estate and the staggering $10.8 billion in taxes they must pay on it. Part of that plan: Give some 23,000 pieces of art that Lee collected to South Korean museums. More than 1,200 works, by Monet, Gauguin, Picasso , Lee Jung-seob, and other heavyweights, will be going to the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, which has largely focused on Korean art from the 20th and 21st centuries. Regional museums around the country will also benefit. “It is our civic duty and responsibility to pay all taxes,” the family said in a statement. Their estate-tax bill is said to be the largest in South Korea’s history.
THE BIG DISCOVERIES JUST KEEP COMING IN EGYPT. In February there was the mummy with a golden tongue. In March, it was Christian monastic ruins. And earlier this month, it was the “lost golden city of Luxor.” Now archaeologists in the country say they have found more than 110 ancient tombs in the Nile Delta area, more than half of which are oval-shaped tombs dating back to the Predynastic era (6000–3150 B.C.E.), the Associated Press reports. The AP notes that the country has been promoting archaeological efforts in an effort to boost tourism, which fell in the wake of the 2011 revolution. The highlight of those publicity efforts was arguably the “Pharaohs’ Golden Parade” a few weeks back, which involved more than 20 mummies being carted to the new National Museum of Egyptian Civilization in Cairo in a caravan.
The organizers of Burning Man have nixed their plan to stage the annual event in the Nevada desert in August. “We know the need for community has never been stronger,” its CEO said. “And building community is what Burners do best. We also recognize the pandemic is not over.” [Associated Press]
Artist Casey Jenkins is suing the Australia Council, alleging that it damaged their career by pulling funding from an online performance piece the queer artist had planned last year, apparently as a result of criticism from a conservative political commentator. The work, which the artist has continued independently, documents their attempts to become pregnant using donor sperm. [The Sydney Morning Herald]
Philanthropist and collector Marie-Josée Kravis has been board chair of the Museum of Modern Art, succeeding the embattled Leon Black, who chose not to run for another term. She was the board’s president from 2005 to 2018. [ARTnews]
Phillips auction house has starting an art advisory service, Phillips Art Advisory. It’s headed by Kevie Yang, an international specialist at the company. [ARTnews]
Haeju Kim has been tapped to be the artistic director of the 2022 Busan Biennale in South Korea. Kim is currently the deputy director of the Art Sonje Center in Seoul. [The Artro]
Nick Squires in Rome: “A priceless reliquary dedicated to an Italian saint who inspired a sword-in-the-stone legend similar to that of Excalibur has been recovered by police after being stolen more than 30 years ago.” [The Telegraph]
Of the roughly 1,600 craters with names on the moon, only 33 have been named for women, the New York Times reports. Not a great percentage. The artist and researcher Bettina Forget has been making meticulous drawings of them for a project she has titled “Women with Impact.” “A crater is an absence of matter, a void,” she told the Times. “That’s a parallel with a void of women in STEM.” [The New York Times]
Thank you for reading. We’ll see you tomorrow.