Brexit Critic Antony Gormley Seeks German Citizenship, Prehistoric Paintings Face Climate Threat in France, and More: Morning Links for June 6, 2022

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The Headlines

WATER FINDS ITS OWN LEVEL. First, the bad news: The Cosquer Cave, which is located off the coast of Marseille, France, and filled with prehistoric paintings, is at risk of being completely flooded because of climate change, the Associated Press reports. The better (though not exactly great) news is that a virtual replica has been created and was put on display in Marseille this past weekend. On a related note, artists Mark BradfordAndrea Bowers, and Jenny Holzer are presenting an ambitious art show in Los Angeles this week that aims to draw attention to the climate crisis, the Los Angeles Times reports. Holzer is showing her trademark text pieces in a variety of formats (billboards, light projects). One reads, “We have the fundamental right to a livable future.”

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GREXIT. Sculptor Antony Gormley, who has mounted many high-profile productions in his native Britain (Angel of the North, for one), said that he is obtaining German citizenship in response to the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the European Union, the Guardian reports. “I’m embarrassed about Brexit: it’s a practical disaster, a betrayal of my parents’ and grandparents’ sacrifice to make a Europe that was not going to be divided again,” Gormley said at a press event for his new retrospective at the Museum Voorlinden in Wassenaar, the Netherlands. “It’s a tragedy.” The artist, who has a German mother, expects to receive the new passport next month.

The Digest

Two French graffiti artists—Julien Blanc and Pierre Audebert, who went respectively by Jibeone and Full1—were killed when they were struck a train in New York in April. The international graffiti community has been mourning. [The New York Times]

The National Gallery of Australia in Canberra will need to spend AU$87 million (about US$62.9 million) over the next five years on internal repairs and upgrades to its buildings, internal documents show. At the moment, only AU$20 million (US$14.5 million) has been allocated, leaving a “budget black hole in wait for new Arts Minister Tony Burke,” Linda Morris reports. [The Sydney Morning Herald]

The OpenSea NFT platform has been accused by some users of not doing enough to prevent theft and plagiarism. Its leadership said it is taking steps to combat those issues. “Like every tech company, there’s a period where you’re catching up,” its chief, Devin Finzer, said. [The New York Times]

On Friday, police were investigating a death that occurred at the Worcester Art Museum in Massachusetts. Additional details about the case have not been reported. [Telegram & Gazette]

The artist Lydia Ourahmane will soon have her installation Barzakh on view at the S.M.A.K. museum in Ghent, Belgium, a recreation of her onetime apartment in Algeria with 5,000 of her possessions. She does not mind people looking through her stuff, she said. “There’s nothing in my life that I’m ashamed of really, because my life is pure.” [The New York Times]

Here is a look behind the scenes of the recent (secret!) auction of a 1955 Mercedes-Benz 300 SLR Uhlenhaut for $143 million—the most ever spent for a car on the block. Simon Kidston, the car expert who helped engineer the sale, said that the winning “client took the view that he would pay whatever it is.” [Vanity Fair]

The Kicker

TIES THAT BIND. This past weekend, artists Luke George and Daniel Kok used rope to tie up five players from the Australian Football League (Australian rules football, for the uninitiated) to recreate a famous play from a 2011 game, as part of the Rising festival in Melbourne. Interviewed before the event at the National Gallery of Victoria by the Guardian, George said that he was expecting “people who are avid footy fans, people who are there because of Rising, and people who like rope bondage—something fascinating can come from creating this space.” [The Guardian]


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