In 2022, ARTnews published over 2,600 stories. Below is a look back at 10 of the top ones from 2022, as selected by the publication’s editors.
For end-of-year coverage, we’ve also got lists of the defining artworks, art events, and exhibitions of 2022, as well as roundups of under-recognized artists who got their due and a look back at what happened with NFTs this year.
Thank you for reading, as always, and we look forward to seeing you in 2023.
Behind the Scenes at Superblue
Superblue, a starry enterprise initially spearheaded by Pace Gallery CEO Marc Glimcher and former Pace London president Mollie Dent-Brocklehurst, has made inroads into the art-and-technology field with its immersive installations. But, behind the scenes, it has “suffered in-fighting on the board, high-profile turnover, and a lack of funding that, sources said, is the result of cost overruns, mismanagement, and a board structure that has plagued decision-making,” as Daniel Cassady reported in an in-depth piece that surveyed what has happened at Superblue since its founding two years ago.
How Dealer Douglas Chrismas Fell from Grace
The founder of Los Angeles’s Ace Gallery, Douglas Chrismas was once one of the most esteemed dealers in the United States. But he has recently been charged with money laundering and embezzlement, and has angered many artists he once worked with. The whole situation “speaks to the opacity of the art market and the millions of dollars sloshing around in it,” Catherine G. Wagley wrote in a profile of Chrismas.
Internal Rifts at Masterworks
Masterworks, an art-finance start-up founded in 2017 by Scott Lynn, has made waves by selling fractional shares of securitized artworks by blue-chip artists. Current and former employees interviewed by Angelica Villa spoke of a rocky situation unfolding within the company, with some claiming that leadership there had been reckless in a number of its decisions. A few claimed that what Masterworks had violated rules and regulations put in place by organizations like the SEC.
Inside the Warhol Supreme Court Case
It’s exceedingly rare for art-related cases to make it to the U.S. Supreme Court, but in 2022, one was heard. The case pits the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts against the photographer Lynn Goldsmith, who claimed that the Pop artist appropriated her portrait of Prince in such a way that infringed upon her copyright. As Shanti Escalante-De Mattei and Tessa Solomon reported, the case could determine how appropriation art is dealt with by legal experts for years to come. Meanwhile, Greg Allen took us inside the courtroom as conservative justices pondered the true meaning of fair use.
RM Talks Art
RM is widely known for his acclaimed music—a solo record just came out this year. Yet the BTS member has also made popular forays into the art world, and this year, he discussed his fervor for art with ARTnews. “I feel happiest when I’m at an art exhibition as an individual,” he told Delia Harrington. Meanwhile, art museums are getting the “BTS bump” after RM visits.
The Opening of the Year, at O'Flaherty's
Most openings are run-of-the-mill affairs, but the same could not be said when the New York gallery O’Flaherty’s kicked off its group show “The Patriot,” which featured work by more than 200 artists. John Chiaverina, reporting on the festivities, called the show “fun. And completely insane.” A mass of people showed up, and not too long after it started, the crowd was dispersed by the police. The artist Borna Sammak told Chiaverina that the opening was a lot like the Vans Warped Tour.
The Mystery Surrounding an Antiquities Trafficking Investigation
One of the year’s most shocking controversies involved the former Louvre head Jean-Luc Martinez, who was charged with “complicity of gang fraud and laundering” in connection with a sprawling antiquities trafficking investigation. The mystery surrounding Martinez deepened when Devorah Lauter revealed that he may have ignored a warning from Marc Gabolde, a prominent Egyptologist, about the murky provenance of one object he acquired. As the investigation continues to play out, Gabolde’s warning may prove key.
Raymond McGuire's Forward-Thinking Collecting
For years, Raymond J. McGuire has been amassing a collection that brings together several generations of Black artists and puts them in conversation. For a profile this year, he took Maximilíano Durón inside his holdings and explained how he came to collecting. “Collecting art is a critical part of Ray’s life,” Studio Museum in Harlem director Thelma Golden told Durón. “He sees it as central to who he is.”
The Story Behind the Anna Weyant Media Circus
When Anna Weyant was taken on by Gagosian earlier this year, it raised many eyebrows, not just because she is the youngest artist on the gallery’s roster but also because she is reportedly dating the gallery’s founder, Larry Gagosian. Amid a good deal of finger wagging and jokes at Weyant’s expense, Mieke Marple penned an op-ed in which she deconstructed the portrayals of the artist in the press, writing that many reports represented “Weyant as an innocent: blonde and beautiful, she hails from a small town in Canada, signs her paintings with heart emojis, and bakes chocolate chip cookies for studio guests.” By the time Weyant’s first solo show with Gagosian finally opened, “the art itself [had] gotten lost” amid the ado, Alex Greenberger wrote in a negative review of the exhibition.
The Best Venice Biennale Pavilions
The Venice Biennale returned this year after a Covid-related delay, and as usual, there was much on offer, including dozens of national pavilions. Alex Greenberger sampled the best ones, which ranged from an Australian Pavilion by Marco Fusinato filled with booming sound and a Latvian Pavilion by Skuja Braden that contained numerous quirky pieces of pottery. Sonia Boyce’s British Pavilion (#4) ended up winning the Golden Lion, and Zineb Sedira’s French Pavilion (#1) received a special mention from the Biennale’s jury.