Italian Dealers Flee London, Traditional Art Buyers Shun NFTs, and More: Morning Links from April 29, 2021

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The Headlines

THE AMERICAN ART SCENE HAS LOST A LEGEND. William T. Wiley, an artist of wit and verve, and an art teacher of broad influence, has died at 83, the San Francisco Chronicle reports The Manetti Shrem Museum of Art at the University of California, Davis is at work on a Wiley survey that is scheduled to open in January. A key mover of the Bay Area Funk art movement, he taught at the school for more than a decade. “He was a wonderful spirit and I watched his work from the beginning when he was an abstract expressionist painter,” fellow artist Wayne Thiebaud, 100, told the Chronicle. “We disagreed all the time and still liked each other. He was a real gentleman and a lovely person. The last time I saw him he gave me a nice kiss.”

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ITALIANS DEALERS TO LONDON: ARRIVEDERCI! Galleries from the Apennine Peninsula are shuttering their spaces in the British capital city because of Brexit and the pandemic, Melanie Gerlis reports in the Financial Times. “Customs cost more, shipping costs more, but mostly it is the added complications, paperwork, and delays,” Matteo Lampertico, of ML Fine Art, said. Tornabuoni Art and Cortesi Gallery have also closed there. This is, of course, sad news for London art lovers, but those craving a taste of Italy can look forward to the National Gallery‘s July show of Bernardo Bellotto.

The Digest

The Cleveland-based artist Michelangelo Lovelace, “who created poignant paintings and drawings often focused on issues of injustice in America,” has died at the age of 60, Claire Selvin reports. [ARTnews]

NFTs may be grabbing headlines, but many traditional art collectors appear to be steering clear of them for a panoply of reasons. “Absolutely none of my clients are buying NFTs,” the New York art adviser Lisa Schiff said. [The New York Times]

Phillips has a new CEO: Stephen Brooks, a former Christie’s executive. He’s replacing Ed Dolman, who will become the auction house’s executive chairman. [ARTnews]

After careful study, the National Gallery in London has that determined that a painting once believed to be a Poussin, then believed to be a copy of a Poussin, is, in fact, a Poussin. It is being put on view with a new label bearing its fresh identification. [The Guardian]

Meet Simon Gillespie, an art restorer in London’s tony Mayfair district who is “part sleuth, part therapist, and part miracle worker,” in the words of the Financial Times[FT]

What a time to be in Singapore! The city-state is currently leading Bloomberg’s Covid Resilience Ranking, and it will soon be home to a new display of glass works by the American glass maestro Dale Chihuly. [The Strait Times]

The Kicker

The most valuable stamp in the world, the fabled British Guiana One-Cent Magenta, is set to hit the auction block at Sotheby’s in New York in June with an estimate of $10 million to $15 million, but right now, it is on view at the house’s London branch, the Guardian reports. “It is the Mona Lisa of philately,” stamp expert David Beech told the paper. Seems worth a look if you’re in town! The one-of-a-kind treasure was discovered in 1873 by a (clearly precocious) 12-year-old named Vernon Vaughan.  He should not be confused with actor Vernon Vaughn, who appeared in the 1996 comedy Swingers, or Vernon H. Vaughan, who served briefly as acting governor of the Utah Territory in the United States in the 1870s. Different people, folks.

Thank you for reading. We’ll see you tomorrow.


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