Tag: News

Art and Art History News | October 27th

News and Links | October 27th   The Getty Research Institute has bought the ‘less controversial’ material from the archive of the Knoedler & Company art gallery in New York, which closed abruptly last year after charges that it was selling fakes. Thomas Gaehtgens, the director of the GRI, says “This archive can give us the basis for telling the story about how the museums in America have been built or developed.” The archive includes details of the sale of hundreds of paintings from the State Hermitage Museum in Leningrad in the 1930s by the Soviet government. Tom Flynn on the Rotterdam art theft, disputing the idea that art thieves are stupid and won’t find buyers for their loot. The National Museum of Australia is holding a new exhibition where the public can talk to the museum’s conservators and watch them at work.…

News and Writing on Art and Art History | September 3rd

News and Writing on Art and Art History | September 3rd Katrina Grant News New NGV director Tony Ellwood gave a speech to the Melbourne Press Club on the 23rd August (full text in The Australian) where he outlined plans for the NGV under his leadership, some more specific than others. The continued focus on the apparent need for more and more contemporary art at the NGV strikes me as misplaced. A collection will always have its gaps (I’m sure many of us could think of a certain period we would love to see a few more examples of). However, the NGV does a lot for contemporary art, there is always contemporary art on display in both the NGVA and NGV International, including a dedicated space at the NGV International. They collect (it seems to me) a significant amount of…

News and Writing on Art and Art History | 18th August

News and Writing on Art and Art History | 18th August Katrina Grant News A fascinating overview of the Czartoryski Raphael on the Three Pipe Problem, this painting is one of the famous looted paintings of World War II and remains lost: possibly destroyed, possibly in a bank vault somewhere. The provenance is mysterious and it is hard to be certain of whether it is even by Raphael himself. The state of the humanities, including art history, was a topic of discussion on Radio National’s Books and Arts Daily program, guests included Melbourne University’s ANthony White, Monash University’s Raelene Francis and Queensland University’s Paul Makeham. More to listen to here with NPR’s interview with art forger Ken Perenyi – ‘An Art Forger Tells All’ Ann Stephen has written a conference report on this year’s AAANZ conference, held in Sydney in July. The reflections on Robert Hughes continue – Simon Schama writes in…

News and Writing on Art and Art History | August 11

Recent News and Writing on Art and Art History Katrina Grant News The big news from the past week was that art critic and historian Robert Hughes had died. There have been many tributes to him, from the obituaries in the New York Times, The Age and the Guardian has collected together excerpts from his writing on art over the years, to shorter and more personal tributes from art historians such as David Packwood, Bendor Grosvenor and several Australian-based art academics in The Conversation. Many friends from both inside and outside the world of art history have commented to me that it was Hughes’ writings and documentaries that really introduced them to art and to really thinking and questioning art. One only has to watch one of mine, and many others, favourite clips from his New Shock of the New to remember…

News | Art history helps us understand our society and identity, so why is it under threat?

An article published today by Anthony White (Lecturer in Art history at The University of Melbourne and head of the Victorian chapter of AAANZ) in The Age addresses why it makes no sense for La Trobe to cut a department with healthy enrolments, strong postgrads and dedicated, high-achieving staff. THE recent proposal by La Trobe University to cut its humanities subjects has provoked vigorous criticism in Australia and internationally. Among the proposals to close disciplines (including linguistics, Indonesian, gender and religion studies), the plan to discontinue art history has drawn a particularly sharp response. The La Trobe University program has produced some of the finest art historians and curators in Australia. Many have gone on to successful careers at museums and universities that include the British Library, the Queensland Art Gallery and the University of Melbourne. Tony Ellwood, a La…

News and Writing on Art and Art History July 28, 2012

News and Writing on Art and Art History July 28 Katrina Grant News I know I already posted a link to Joanna Mendelssohn’s excellent article in The Conversation Save art history: why La Trobe needs to support cultural life in Australia, but I felt it deserved a second posting. Don’t forget to leave your comment in support and don’t forget the La Trobe petition. If you haven’t signed it, do so this weekend! ‘Art fairs are becoming increasingly important aspects of the international art scene… It’s part of an international trend towards an increasingly globalised art market that takes in collectors, dealers and galleries from Asia and the Middle East, as well as the traditional metropoles of contemporary high art in New York, Los Angeles and London.’ Ben Eltham’s article in Crikey on the Melbourne Art Fair, which is about to open in…

News | Why La Trobe needs to support cultural life in Australia

Joanna Mendelsshon (Program Director, Art Administration, School of Art History and Art Education at University of New South Wales) has written a fantastic article for The Conversation in which she succinctly lays out the reasons why universities, like La Trobe, need to teach art history. La Trobe university’s art history department is set to be abolished, with a consultation period over the changes to the university’s humanities program to end this month. While one art history department might not seem like much, the repercussions will be felt throughout academia and the art world. If it is cut, it will leave only one fully fledged art history department left in Victoria, limiting the choice for students and affecting the future of Australian galleries and museums. The Art Association of Australia and New Zealand (AAANZ) and the National Association for the Visual Arts (NAVA) have both written in protest…

AAANZ Letter | Save Art History at La Trobe

The Art Association of Australia and New Zealand have also allowed their letter concerning the slashing of art history at La Trobe to be published. The Art Association of Australia and New Zealand expresses great concern at the possible closure of art history at La Trobe University. This is particularly to be deplored because the program has healthy numbers with strong retention rates, is cost-effective in its current placement within the School of Historical and Cultural Studies and is being taught by staff with exceptionally high research outputs. Since the 1970s La Trobe’s scholarly art historians have made a significant contribution to the intellectual life of this country and overseas. Students have benefited from outstanding teaching to establish professional careers in universities, art galleries and the media in Australia, Europe and the USA. These are graduates of whom Australia can be…

Letter | Save Art History at La Trobe

Patrick McCaughey, former director of the National Gallery of Victoria and the Yale Centre for British Art, has kindly allowed his letter protesting the slashing of art history from La Trobe to the Vice Chancellor of La Trobe university to be published. Dear Vice-Chancellor, Some colleagues  have contacted me recently about the possible closing of the art history program at La Trobe University. If this is the case, I write now to urge you to re-consider the matter. Everybody would recognize that times are tough for Australian universities in general and for the humanities in particular. Having to close down good academic programs and limiting the offerings of the university must be an unpleasant aspect of academic administration. You have my sympathy. The discipline of  art history in Australia in general is practiced at a particularly high level amongst the humanities.…

News and Writing on Art and Art History | July 9

News and Writing on Art and Art History | July 9 Katrina Grant The art news buzzing around the internet late last week was that two Italian art historians had announced that they had identified ‘100 new Caravaggio’s’ in the form of drawings (there are some images on the La Repubblica site). The claim has been met with scepticism, with scholars such as Keith Christiansen, who described it as ‘sensationalism’, and John T. Spike both suggesting the drawings are more likely to simply be ‘studio of Peterzano’, or similar. Spike has also pointed out that many of the drawings are in more technically adept that some of Caravaggio’s early paintings (which would post-date the drawings). The curators at Milan’s Castello Sforzesco, where the collection is held, also claim that the scholars in question never visited the gallery and haven’t actually viewed the drawings in…

News | La Trobe University Cuts Art History Program

La Trobe University Cuts Art History Program Katrina Grant It is a sad day for the discipline of art history in Australia with the news that art history is to be cut from the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences at La Trobe University along with gender, sexuality and diversity studies, Indonesian, linguistics and religion and spirituality. The restructure was released to staff yesterday. In addition to slashing the number of subjects and disciplines available the Faculty will also cut forty-five jobs. It is one thing to see disciplines shrink in terms of staff and subject offerings but once a discipline disappears completely it seems unlikely that it will return. The University of Melbourne is now the only university in Victoria to offer a dedicated art history program (a few other universities offer some art history and theory in their visual arts…

News and Writing on Art and Art History

Recent News and Writing on Art and Art History | June 18th Katrina Grant The Monash University Museum of Art has launched a new website providing more space for images and documentation of exhibitions. The new website also includes the museum’s collection online – you can now search and browse through details of 1800 works by Australian artists in the Monash University Collection, established in 1961. And, you can browse and purchase MUMA’s catalogues via the website – providing an insight into art practice and exhibition history since the 1970s. Why most museum websites are terrible (at achieving mission). Versailles now available online in 3D. More than six months after Hetti Perkins quit her job as senior curator of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art there is still no replacement. A void that highlights the distinct lack of indigenous people at the…

News and Writing on Art and Art History | June 8th

News and Writing on Art and Art History | June 8th  News The Art Newspaper on what having a left wing government in France could mean for the arts and culture sector. The Museum of Modern Art in Sydney has clocked up an impressive quarter of a million visitors since it reopened in March this year. How do galleries and museums deal with radioactive objects? This includes not only early scientific instruments but also a range of twentieth-century dinnerware that was given its distinctive red and orange colours by adding uranium oxide (maybe think twice about eating off your vintage plates!) A useful online gallery of all the works to be included in the upcoming Raphael exhibition to be held at the Prado from June 12th this year. An important Papunya Tula painting that has been missing for the past 10…

Exhibition | Napoleon: Revolution to Empire, NGV International

Napoleon: Revolution to Empire NGV International, June 2nd to 7th October 2012 This year’s Melbourne Winter Masterpiece, Napoleon: Revolution to Empire, has opened at the National Gallery of Victoria International. The exhibition traces the career of Napoleon Bonaparte from the latter part of the French Revolution through his rise to Emperor and to his exile to St Helena in 1815. The exhibition includes a number of exceptional paintings, with a particular emphasis on portraits of Napoleon, his family and various important people from the Napoleonic era. There is also a rich selection of decorative arts including jewellery, furniture and dinner services. The exhibition is organised around several themes that take the visitor from the fall of the ancien régime and the rise of Napoleon as a military leader during the French Revolution. Other themes include the relationship between Napoleon and…

News and Writing about Art and Art History | June 4th

News and Writing about Art and Art History | June 4th Links compiled by Katrina Grant News Sotheby’s in New York is selling a fragment of a painting suggested to be a lost Guido Reni (Bacchus and Ariadne on the Island of Naxos) that was commissioned by Queen Henrietta Maria but never sent to England because of the civil war and subsequently cut up for being ‘too salacious’. The Tate has received a donation of paintings and sculptures from philanthropists Mercedes and Ian Stoutzker, it includes works by David Hockney, Jacob Epstein,  and Lucian Freud, amongst others. Cuts to TAFE funding by the Victorian government could mean that Ballarat arts school has to close. Art has been taught in Ballarat since 1870. Re-imagining our museumsfor the digital age. Steven Zucker and Beth Harris on why the Google Art Project is important. Should…