1. Kapoor achieved the black power

Indian-born British artist Anish Kapoor has acquired exclusive rights to the revolutionary Vantablack pigment, said to be the blackest shade of black ever created. Kapoor is currently the only person in the world who can paint using this colour, and has been doing so since 2014. Developed by British company Nanosystems, Vantablack is composed of a series of microscopic vertical tubes: when light strikes them, it becomes trapped instead of bouncing off and is continually deflected between the tubes. The pigment is currently the blackest substance known, so dark that it absorbs 99.96 per cent of light.

2. Saving Syrian archaeological memory

A team of digital surveyors is working to create the world’s largest 3D database of archaeological sites in Syria, focusing on those at risk of destruction. French 3D digitisation agency Iconem launched Syrian Heritage, a project organised with the Syrian Directorate-General of Antiquities and Museums (DGAM) to preserve a patrimony increasingly threatened by warfare and violence. Three-dimensional models published on SketchFab also allow you to interact with select sections of each site by zooming in to examine incredibly precise details.

3. Many Modì paintings to be seen together at last

LaM in Lille (France) presents the most important retrospective of Amedeo Modigliani so far. The museum conserve one of the most beautiful collection of paintings and sculptures made by the Italian artist of Montparnasse, coming from the collection of his friend Roger Duttilleul. 120 works have been collected from all over the world and are shown together with those of other artists that have crossed Modigliani’s path, such as Constantin Brancusi, Moïse Kisling, Jacques Lipchitz, Pablo Picasso and Chaïm Soutine.

4. Matt’s Gallery looking for home

Founder of London Matt’s Gallery Robin Klassnik announced the gallery will be moving from its Acme-owned venue on Copperfield Road in east London to a new 9,000sqft space in Wandsworth, south-west London, Art Monthly reports. Originally founded as a studio space on Hackney’s Martello Street in 1979, Matt’s Gallery (named after Klassnik’s dog) moved to Copperfield Road in 1993, when the gallery registered as a Friendly Society, obtaining charitable status. The new space is scheduled to open in 2019. The gallery is currently looking for a smaller temporary space elsewhere in London to relocate as of May 2016.

5. An English sculptor for the Venice Biennale

The British Council, which administers the British Pavilion in Venice, announced that the sculptor Phyllida Barlow will represent Britain at 2017 Venice Biennale 2017. Barlow, who is 71, has earned international renown in recent years for her large-scale installations made of wood and other scrappy materials that seem to stretch out in dense tangles, like mysterious living organisms. She is great-great-great-granddaughter of Charles Darwin.

6. How art can survive in contemporary cities

Set against the striking cityscape of Doha, the conference “Art for Tomorrow” brought together world-famous artists and architects, with leading museum directors, urban developers, policy-makers and financiers to discuss about the future of art, its impact on cities and vice versa. With an overall theme of ‘Technology, Creativity and the City’, the 2016 edition of Art for Tomorrow sought to explore the complex relationships between the digital world and the creative process, the nature of creativity and its impact on developing cities or even nations, and what goes into making a city ‘creative’. The conference examined the role of cities and 21st-century technology on culture in general and on artists in particular.

7. Blu radically against the commercialisation of street-art

In Bologna (Italy), in the Museo della storia di Bologna situated in Palazzo Pepoli, it is possible to visit the first Italian retrospective on Urban Art, “Street art, Banksy&CO.” including one work made by Banksy ten years ago. The effect is nearly baffling, since the pieces have been removed from the original walls and restored. The famous Italian street-artist Blu, some day before the opening, decided to erase in protest all his historical graffiti from the walls of Bologna.

8. The biggest sale in Art Basel Hong Kong

Of the 239 galleries featured in this year’s big art fair, Cardi Gallery, based in London and Milan, apparently had one of the biggest sales, a work by Cy Twombly – the world-famous famous artist born in Virginia in 1962 – that had an asking price of $10 million. It was bought by a private European collector.

9. The “Queen of the curve” passed away

Zaha Hadid, the world-renowned architect, whose designs include the London Olympic aquatic centre, has died aged 65. The British designer, who was born in Iraq, had a heart attack on Thursday while in hospital in Miami, where she was being treated for bronchitis. Hadid’s buildings have been commissioned around the world –  and she was the first woman to receive the Pritzker Architecture Prize and the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) gold medal. Hadid has always been obsessed with speed. Buildings zoom by with great velocity, their facade markings suggesting lines of movement.

10. An abstract painter is the best for Harper’s Bazaar

Leading artist Sean Scully is the recipient of this year’s Harper’s Bazaar Art International Artist of the Year Award. The prize was awarded for “the artist’s outstanding performance in contemporary art over the past year”. The magazine Harper’s Bazaar Art promotes especially artistic dialogue between the east and the west. Following the unprecedented success of Sean Scully’s recent career-length exhibitions in Shanghai and Beijing, the artist’s work will be shown in a second wave of exhibitions across China that opened on 8 April 2016.

Silvia Meloni



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