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HISTORY’S MYSTERIES, PART I. Yesterday brought news of researchers at a museum in Israel discovering three sketches by Amedeo Modigliani hiding beneath the surface of a painting of a nude woman that he made in 1908. Now, experts at the National Galleries of Scotland have revealed that they X-rayed a Vincent Van Gogh portrait of a woman from its collection and found a self-portrait of the artist on its back, BBC News reports. The self-portrait is currently obscured by cardboard that was glued to the verso of the 1885 work. Staffers said that it may be possible to uncover that side of the painting with careful conservation work. Lesley Stevenson, a museum conservator, said that her reaction was “shock” when she saw van Gogh “looking out at us.”
HISTORY’S MYSTERIES, PART II. Working in Artieda, Spain, near the Pyrenees, archaeologists have identified the ruins of a Roman city that dates to between the first and second centuries, El País reports. A report from the group says that the site once featured “buildings of enormous dimensions,” according to one researcher. Issued by experts from a number of European universities, that report states that the area was once home to “public monuments, including baths, a water supply system, regular urban planning, sewers, and possibly a temple.” The name of the city is lost to history—for now.
British architect Marco Goldschmied, who was one of the four founders of the Richard Rogers Partnership, and who was involved in designing the Centre Pompidou, died last week at 78. He was president of the Royal Institute of British Architects from 1999 to 2001. [Dezeen]
An art dealer in Palm Beach, Florida, Daniel Elie Bouaziz, has been indicted on mail fraud, money laundering, and wire fraud charges for allegedly selling fake works attributed to Andy Warhol, Banksy, and Jean-Michel Basquiat. He faces up to 20 years in prison. [ARTnews]
Cartoonist Garry Trudeau will offer NFTs for some of his Doonesbury comicstrips for sale at Heritage Auctions, with all proceeds going to charity. [The Washington Post]
Mark your calendars, Hilma af Klint fans. The final volume of the catalogue raisonné of the once-obscure Swedish giant has a release date: October 31, 2022. The full production clocks in at seven volumes. “If someone really wants to understand how Hilma af Klint’s works function, they need these books,” said Daniel Birnbaum, who coedited it with Kurt Almqvist. [ArtDaily]
Meet artist and activist Alberto Gerosa, who has staged unauthorized displays at Documenta, the Venice Biennale, and Art Basel Hong Kong to critique what he sees as the exclusivity of the art industry. [South China Morning Post]
PASS THE BUBBLY. Two brothers, Giovanni and Pierre Buono, just shelled out $2.5 million for a magnum bottle of champagne adorned with a Bored Ape Yacht Club–style ape and four other pieces conceived by an artist known as Mig, Fortune reports. Naturally, the buyers will receive NFTs for the artworks. The brains behind this creation, Shammi Shinh, explained how it all came about: “To me, I’m thinking people are spending millions of dollars on pictures of apes, why wouldn’t they prefer a high caliber champagne with an ape on the bottle itself?” Hard to argue with that! [Fortune]