National Portrait Gallery rejects $ 1.3 million from billionaire Sacklers forced to sell art collection

The National Portrait Gallery, London (via Lim Ashley / Flickr)

Week in Review is a weekly collection of news, developments and emotions in the art world. Subscribe to receive these articles as a weekly newsletter.

that of London National portrait gallery decided not to accept a major donation from the Sackler Trust first promised in 2016. The institution had been considering this promise as part of an internal review for over a year. In a statement, the museum wrote that the organizations “have jointly agreed not to proceed at this time” with the donation. The £ 1million (roughly $ 1.3million) was intended for ‘Inspiring People’, a $ 46million redevelopment of the Victorian Gallery Building near Trafalgar Square. In February, photographer Nan Goldin, an opponent of the family-owned opioid manufacturing company Sackler Purdue Pharma, said she would not show up at the museum if they accepted the gift. [Financial Times]

The Louvre (via Wikimedia Commons)

When the Louver in Paris loaned three paintings looted by the Nazis to the Shoah Memorial for an exhibition entitled The art market under occupation, he was greeted with a surprise. The exhibition explores the art market in France between 1940 and 1944; and the day before the opening of the exhibition, the curator Emmanuelle Polack presented to the Louvre a request for restitution on behalf of individuals claiming to be the legitimate heirs of the works, descendants of a Jewish lawyer and an art collector. The tables in question are from Jean-Louis Forain, Henri monnier, and Camille Roqueplan. [artnet News]

The infamous Ship at Hudson Yards sparked controversy not for its strong resemblance to the shwarma, but for its photo policy making it clear that any photo with the ship in the background is up for grabs so that Hudson Yards can use it as they see fit. The people who purchased tickets for the ship have signed an agreement that Hudson Yards may use their “photos, audio recordings or video footage depicting or relating to the ship” for “any purpose in all media (in either case, now known or developed later) ”, including all images, including their faces. After a wave of negative reactions on social media, the clause was amended so that visitors to the ship “now remain the property of all photographs, text, audio recordings or video footage depicting or relating to the ship”. [NYT]

Indian businessman and art collector Nirav Modi was arrested in London for his alleged connection to a multibillion dollar fraud at the Punjab National Bank. Today, the diamond mogul’s estimated $ 5 million art collection is being auctioned off by the Indian Tax Collection Office to collect part of the $ 2 billion the mogul is accused of stealing from. the public bank. [artnet News]

Artist Sterling ruby launches a ready-to-wear collection, SR STUDIO. THE. CA, for its debut in June. “I’ve always been interested in the behavioral power of clothing. For years, I have privately explored clothing as a medium, as something that impacts the way we think, feel and move, ”Ruby said in a statement. “I couldn’t be more excited to finally bring my clothes into the world.” [artnet News]

Lee Ufan has chosen a location for his art foundation, which will open in summer 2020: the Vernon Hotel in Arles, France. [Le Figaro]


The Victoria & Albert Museum (V&A) purchased a pair of Champagne floor lamps designed by Salvador Dali and Edouard james. Each lamp is made up of 10 oversized brass champagne glasses stacked on top of each other, with a “Victorian papier-máché tray-shaped” base covered in decorative tendrils of golden ivy, berries and leaves. The lamps were purchased with funds from the National Heritage Memorial Fund, the Art Fund and members of V&A. “These lamps are of exceptional importance to the history of modern design and surrealist art in Britain and we are delighted that the V&A is acquiring them for public viewing,” said Christophe Wilk, Custodian of Furniture, Textiles and Fashion at V&A.

This and other notable sales and acquisitions are chronicled in our last article on transactions.

More news from this week

Let the accessories, books, housewares and other favorite items of hyperallergic readers guide you in your gift plans this year.

The popular TV show is about how terrible rich people can be. And do you know what rich people like? Art collection.

This year we don’t have the magnitude we typically had in previous years due to travel restrictions and blockages, but as is our habit we have the depth.

Does an attempt to elevate Marisol’s art backfire?

Julia P. Cluff