Art News & Views

In the News, May 2012

India at the Moscow's Museum Night

Moscow. On May 19, Moscow's Museum Night was organised featuring almost 200 art galleries, parks and theaters, as well as Moscow's Beer Museum and the embassies of Belgium, Iceland, Egypt, and Greece. This tradition was launched in 1999 in 40 European countries and Russia joined the project in 2007.

For the first time, Indian diplomats in Moscow had arranged an event at Moscow's Museum of Oriental Arts that hosted one of the most treasured collections of Indian art in the world.

Since 1918, the museum has collected and studied Indian bronze sculptures, ancient weapons, art miniatures and bas-reliefs on the Jagannath temple chariot.

The night's main event was a joint exhibition, titled Rickshaw Blues, by two contemporary artists Alexander Tokarev of Russia and Manas Roy of India. This year Russia and India mark 65 years since the establishment of bilateral diplomatic ties between them.

Lifetime Collection of Dolls at Frasher's Doll Auctions

Kansas City, Mo. Anne and Dennis Lambert of Edina, Minn. will be selling their collection of dolls, furnishings, doll-houses and miniatures of forty years on June 16-17 at the Frasher's Doll Auctions. The sale will also include the entire half doll collection of the late Ginger Dean of Overland Park, Kan., comprising over 100 beautiful figures.

On display will be models of elegant French poupees along with their accessories, bebes from Jumeau, Steiner, Bru, Rabery and Delphieu, pretty German girls, characters and babies ranging in size from 8 inches nearly 3 1/2 feet. Peg woodens, milliner models, cloth dolls, Volland's Raggedy Ann, Motschmann wax, Alabama Baby, mask-face googlies or the Philadelphia Baby, doll-size furnishings, carriages and cupboards, tea sets, teddy bears and toys among others will also be there.

The event will be held at the KCI Expo Center at Kansas City International Airport.

Historic Diamond Sold for $9.7 Million at Sotheby's

Geneva. On May 14 and 15 Sotheby's had organised Magnificent Jewels and Noble Jewels auction, where, the Beau Sancy diamond, which was wore by Marie de Medici at her coronation as Queen Consort of Henry IV in France in 1610, was sold for $9.7 million. The 34.98 carat diamond that had passed among the royal families in France, England, Prussia and the Netherlands was sold by the Royal House of Prussia, the line of descendants that once ruled Prussia. It was bought by an anonymous bidder. Another historical item, the Murat Tiara, sold for $3.87 million. The pearl-and-diamond tiara was created for the marriage of a prince whose ancestors included the husband of Caroline Bonaparte, Napoleon's sister.

Chinese Ceramics, Works of Art at Joyce Gallery Auction

Hong Kong. Joyce Gallery Auction will conduct a live online auction of Chinese ceramics and works of art on June 2. The auction aims to serve as a platform for worldwide collectors and art lovers to acquire artworks and collectibles from local and regional collections.

This auction consists of 374 lots including Chinese ceramics, bronzes, furniture, works of art and paintings. Highlights include fine pottery figure of a lokapala standing in strong stance atop a deer, with beautifully modeled detailing to armour and facial features, a Chinese silver figure of Maitreya, future Buddha, with inscription, A.D. 1861, seated with his bag in his hand on a rectangular plinth, a Chinese Sancai glazed tripod tray, offering dish, with floral pattern, Tang Dynasty, a Chinese white jade figure of Bodhisattva Guanyin, early 20th Century.

Xu Jiang: Re-Generation at the Kunsthalle im Lipsiusbau

Dresden. Works by Chinese artist Xu Jiang is being exhibited at Kunsthalle im Lipsiusbau, Dresden. The show titled Re-Generation, started on May 17 and continues till August 18, 2012. The exhibition has been jointly developed by the Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden, the National Art Museum of China and the China Academy of Art Hangzhou. With more than 150 paintings and works on paper as well as two monumental sculptures, the exhibit is Xu Jiang's first large retrospective in Germany and is an integral part of the Chinese Year of Culture 2012.

Sunflowers, those plants which adjust themselves towards the sun, form the central subject of the exhibition. Through Re-Generation, the artist fosters a dialogue about how to redefine artistic positions in the wake of historical events. Xu Jiang was born in Fujian, China, in 1955. His painting is regarded as an opposition to contemporary visual and consumer culture, a new development in the Chinese art discourse in the digital age. Through his work he establishes creative free spaces for experimental art and open debates.

Pollock's "Mural on Indian Red Ground" Seized by the Customs

Tehran, Iran. Mural on Indian Red Ground (1950), a multimillion-dollar painting by U.S. artist Jackson Pollock was seized on May 11 by Iran's customs service when it was being returned to Iran from Japan, where it had been on loan for an exhibition. The customs service is holding the painting over "undeclared debt" owed to it by the government.

With an estimated value of $250 million the painting is considered one of the prize pieces in the Tehran museum, which also features works by Paul Gauguin, Pablo Picasso, Andy Warhol, Alberto Giacometti and Henry Moore. Most of the collection was built up by Iran's former queen Farah Pahlavi to boost her country's cultural profile.

The culture ministry was working on the matter and it was hoped that the painting would soon be returned to the museum.

The Kuwait Cultural Week at New Delhi

New Delhi. On May 15 the Kuwait Cultural Week opened with a unique exhibition of Kuwaiti art, crafts, performing traditions, textiles and handicrafts at the Lalit Kala Akademi at New Delhi. This week long event was organised for the first time to strengthen the cultural ties between the two countries.

A section devoted to the maritime history of the country included replicas of ancient schooners and diving and trading vessels drew visitors. The sturdy boats with multiple white sails were crafted in wood. An exhibition of contemporary art exhibiting works by leading artists showed a perceptible Indian influence in art and idiom. Another attraction of the festival was a concert by Kuwaiti TV band - one of the country's oldest all-man television band which has been performing both in the country and abroad since 1978.

The culture festival, presented by the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) and the Embassy of Kuwait moved to Jaipur from the capital before closing on May 19. Independent surveys say nearly 600,000 Indians are currently living in Kuwait, a source in the embassy said.

Ties between Kuwait and India date back to more than 400 years andthe Kuwaiti cultural week was meant to be a bridge between the two societies.

'Pollard Willow', New Addition to Van Gogh Museum

Amsterdam. The Van Gogh Museum unveiled the painting Pollard Willow, the first addition in five years to its world-famous collection of works by the post-impressionist master, Vincent van Gogh. The watercolour Pollard Willow, executed in the Hague, is a major addition to the museum's collection. The painting depicts a willow trunk drooping over water and a path wending its way to the horizon and a windmill standing near a railroad depot.

The painting, bought at auction in London earlier this year for $1.9 million, filled a gap in the museum's collection of van Gogh works. Later this year it and dozens of other paintings will be shifted across the Amstel River to the Hermitage Amsterdam.

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