Morning Links: Reimagined Cowboy Edition -ARTnews

Cowboy looking at the horizon, Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park.


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Industry News

Artory, a block-chain based startup, has acquired auction database Auction Club, and plans to make some 22 million records from 4,000 auction houses public. [The Art Newspaper]

Here’s a list of the top-paid art prizes in the world. [ARTnews]

An Instagram account called “See You Next Thursday” is auctioning off one piece of art each Thursday via the social media platform. Most recently, a piece by Dan Lam began at $85, and you can watch the auction happen in real time through the comments section. [Artsy]

Food For Thought

Critic Kate Wagner lends her perspective on Thomas Heatherwick’s monumental 16-story Vessel in New York’s new Hudson Yards development: “It is an object lesson teaching us that, in our neoliberal age of surveillance capitalism—an era where the human spirit is subjected to a regime of means testing and digital disruption, and a cynical view of the city as an engine of real estate prevails—architecture, quite frankly, sucks.” [The Baffler]

Last week, ARTnews‘s own Andrew Russeth wrote of the Vessel, “It appears to have been specifically designed to induce intense amounts of dread and alienation.” [ARTnews]

Critic Antwaun Sargent and performance studies scholar Summer Kim Lee speak to the reimagining of the white American cowboy aesthetic, as subverted by musicians such as Mitski, and more recently, the fine art-inclined Solange. [Pitchfork]

Artist Sharon Louden is not thrilled about a new fair that solely displays work by MFA students. She writes that the fair “is based on a flawed perception of what it takes to sustain a creative life.” [Hyperallergic]


Arbus & West, a play based on a brief interaction between Diane Arbus and Mae West, has opened at Melbourne, Australia’s Arts Center Melbourne. [The New York Times]

The Federal Bureau of Investigation and the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Manhattan will seek the return of an undated painting attributed to Pierre Louis Goudreaux, a student of the Rococo painter Jean-Honoré Fragonard. The painting was looted during the Nazi occupation of Ukraine. [ARTnews]

Street Art

A look at how street artists in Havana, Cuba have been handling increased monitoring from Cuban authorities following Decree 349, which “strictly regulates the production of art, prohibiting all artists—musicians and performers included—from creating unapproved art in public or private spaces.” [Citylab]

A mural by Eduardo Kobra depicting Michael Jackson’s childhood and adulthood likenesses, juxtaposed, has been on display in New York’s East Village since last July. Following the harrowing documentary Leaving Neverland, there’s controversy over whether the mural should be taken down. [Gothamist]

Update: Today’s Breakfast with ARTnews newsletter containing these Morning Links incorrectly stated the number of auction records that Artory has acquired and plans to make public. It is 22 million, not 4,000. This post has been updated to reflect this.

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