Designer Thierry Mugler Dies at 73, Museums Work to Value NFT Donations, and More: Morning Links for January 24, 2022

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The Headlines

THE PIONEERING, LARGER-THAN-LIFE FASHION DESIGNER THIERRY MUGLER died on Sunday at the age of 73, the New York Times reports. A master of dramatic silhouettes, Mugler was “one of the principal architects of a late-’80s aesthetic that married S&M and high fashion,” Jacob Bernstein wrote in the Times. His clothes have adorned everyone from Diana Ross to Kate Moss and Kim Kardashian to Cardi B; his Angel perfume was a bestseller, and he was a pioneer in casting trans models for his spectacle-filled shows in the ‘80s, the Guardian reportedCNN noted that a survey of his work, which opened in 2019 at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, is now on view at the Musée des Arts Décoratifs in Paris.

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A MONDAY ARTIST ROUNDUP. Painter Jonas Wood’s latest show, a blockbuster at David Kordansky Gallery in Los Angeles, is titled “Plants and Animals,” and features quite a few depictions of man’s best friend. “I just like dogs,” he told Jonathan Griffin in Cultured. Also in L.A., artist Samara Golden has unveiled one of her topsy-turvy mirror environments at Night Gallery, describing it to Jori Finkel in the New York Times as “a brain where different thoughts battle with each other.” And for its “Overlooked” column, the Times ran an obituary for Chicago’s Lee Godie, who died in 1994, at age 85. A charismatic and mysterious figure who sold her work on the street for years, Godie was “one of the city’s most iconoclastic artists,” Jeremy Lybarger wrote.

The Digest

DEALER DEEP DIVES. New York gallerist Jack Shainman opened up his home in upstate Kinderhook, where he also has a massive space, to share his personal collection with Cultured, and PPOW director Eden Deering discussed her career with the New York Times.

Stuart E. Eizenstat, a diplomat and lawyer who was involved in creating the Washington Principles for the restitution of looted art, is representing the owners of a Pissarro allegedly confiscated by the Nazis, a move that has “surprised some experts in the field,” Graham Bowley reported. In statement, Eizenstat said, “Different claims to artworks that changed hands during World War II have different merits; some are clear cut and some are not.” [The New York Times]

Columnist Carolina A. Miranda wrote about the increasing appearance of QR codes at museums in order to provide curatorial information, and argued that the Los Angeles County Museum of Art‘s “QR code use has gone from techno-additive to grating digital tic.” [Los Angeles Times]

Speaking of museums and technology: the proper method for valuing NFTs that are donated to arts institutions, for insurance and tax purposes, is currently being developed, Kevin T. Dugan reported. A CryptoPunk given to the Institute for Contemporary Art Miami has been in escrow for six months as professionals research its proper valuation. [Intelligencer/New York]

New research indicates that a 1930 Yves Tanguy painting purchased at auction in 1985 is a work that was believed to have been destroyed in an attack by fascists at a Paris cinema during the year the work was made. [The Observer/The Guardian]

Harvey G. Stack, a renowned dealer of rare coins, has died at 93. He is believed to have conducted more numismatic auction sales than anyone else, and his firm says it has at some point handled every type of U.S. coin ever minted. [The New York Times]

The Kicker

THE KING OF ALL MEDIA. Artist Damien Hirst seems to be indefatigable these days. He has a show of “Pipe Cleaner Animal” sculptures at the ArtSpace gallery at Claridge’s hotel in London, he has sold out his recent “Cherry Blossom” paintings, and he has been watching people discuss and trade his NFT project, “The Currency,” online. “It goes up and down, it’s got value one minute, and not the next,” Hirst told the New York Times of that last venture, explaining that, “It’s like being in a cult, and I’m the cult leader.” [NYT]


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