Nederlands Fotomuseum Gets $42.8 M. Donation for New Home, Rain Shutters Hamptons Art Fair, and More: Morning Links for July 18, 2023

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The Headlines

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THE DECISIVE MOMENT. The Nederlands Fotomuseum acquired a new home in Rotterdam with a €38 million donation (about $42.8 million) from the philanthropic organization Droom en Daadde Volkskrant reports (via NL Times). Renovations are planned for the space, which is a 1903 warehouse designated as a national monument, and the museum aims to open there in September of 2025. Because of a hike in its rent, it was on the hunt for a new location in the city. A department store had been planning to move in, but when it canceled that project recently, Droom en Daad heard and alerted officials at the photography institution. “€38 million is really very generous,” the museum’s director, Birgit Donker, told the outlet.

ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACTS. Heavy rain on Sunday caused water to enter parts of the tent housing the Hamptons Fine Art Fair, which closed early for safety reasons, Page Six reports. There were no reports of art being affected. (Amid the trouble, an opera singer apparently started singing and was “asked to stop,” according to a publicist.) Meanwhile, in South Korea, prolonged rainfall has damaged at least 39 cultural properties, the Korea Herald reports. Much of Gongsanseong Fortress (473–538) in Gongju was underwater for a stretch, and the Josadang Shrine, a national treasure at the 7th-century Buseoksa Temple in Yeongju, saw serious soil erosion at its entrance.

The Digest

In New York, city officials approved a plan to erect a 32-foot-tall statue of the storied congresswoman Shirley Chisholm in Brooklyn’s Prospect Park. The monument of Chisholm, the first Black woman in Congress, was conceived by artists Amanda Williams and Olalekan B. Jeyifous[The New York Times]

Reporters Graham Bowley and Tom Mashberg have a deep dive on Met trustee Shelby White, who amassed a formidable collection of ancient artworks—some of which have been seized by authorities after being identified as looted. Officials have not accused White of any wrongdoing. [NYT]

The next edition of the Museum of Modern Art’s always illuminating “Artist’s Choice” exhibition series will be organized by London fashion designer Grace Wales Bonner. Opening in New York in November, it will include some 50 works. Artists in the show will include Terry AdkinsMoustapha Dimé, and Agnes Martin[Artforum]

The artist and singer Anohni, who has a new album out with Anohni and the Johnsons, shared a few of her cultural touchstones, like Washington Square Park in Manhattan (“the most interesting it’s been since I first came to Manhattan in the early ‘90s”) and Arnold, the Arnold Schwarzenegger biopic, on Netflix[The Guardian]

A former Volkswagen exec, Otto F. Wachs, is looking to create a 200,000-square-foot New York Auto Museum in central Manhattan. Wachs was behind the Autostadt, the car museum in Wolfsburg, Germany, billed as the “world’s largest super-destination automotive museum.” [New York Post]

Taiwanese actor Chen Bolin is the latest celeb to select work for a Sotheby’s “Contemporary Curated” auction. This one is taking place in Hong Kong and features work by Mark GrotjahnDamien HirstMiwa Komatsu, and more. The sale will occur July 27, with a preview running for a few days before that. [South China Morning Post]

The Kicker

A NEAR-DEATH EXPERIENCE. Today marks the ten-year anniversary of Detroit filing for bankruptcy, a move that could have led to the sale of works from the Detroit Institute of Arts’ extremely superb collection, which was owned by the city. The Associated Press just revisited that moment, speaking with Kevyn Orr, who served as the emergency manager for the municipality, and he recalled his thinking when he listed the artworks as assets in the filing. “It wasn’t a threat,” Orr said. “It was just: ‘Look, I’ve got a crisis. I need the money.’ We were getting overtures, both domestic and overseas, to buy some of the art.” Eventually, philanthropies stepped in, giving some $800 million to help with pensions, and the art was put into a trust. [AP/The Washington Post]


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