Campbell’s Soup, Wanted
Seven of a set of 10 iconic Campbell’s Soup paintings by Warhol have been stolen from Springfield Art Museum, Missouri. The FBI is offering up to $25,000 (£18,000) as a reward for information. The total collection (31 pieces) is worth around $500,000 (439,000 euro). Springfield Art Museum has closed its ‘The Electric Garden of Our Minds: British/American Pop’ exhibit to the public following the theft from the collection. The stolen artworks each measure 94cm by 62cm (37in by 24.5in).
A pavilion under the sea for Venice
Philanthropist and art collector Francesca von Habsburg’s Vienna-based foundation, Thyssen-Bornemisza Art Contemporary, is planning a long-term under water “Oceans Pavilion” in Venice that she wants to be launched during the next two years, hopefully as early as the summer of 2017, for the 57th international Venice Biennale. Artists, scientists, activists, and anthropologists were brought together during the tropical convention (which marked a milestone of Von Habsburg’s three-year project) for a program of lectures, workshops, and performances to explore the subject.
Elmgreen & Dragset to curate 2017 Istanbul Biennale
The Scandinavian artist duo have been appointed the curators of fifteenth edition of the Istanbul Biennial. The exhibition, organised by the Istanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts and sponsored by Koç Holding, will run from September 16 through November 12, 2017. They are returning to the Istanbul show for the fourth time since they displayed a full-scale model of a “white cube” contemporary art gallery sinking into the ground at the 2001 biennial. The day before the announcement, Elmgreen & Dragset debuted their latest public artwork, a large, vertical swimming-pool sculpture titled Van Gogh’s Ear, at Rockefeller Center.
Caravaggio found in an attic
A mysterious 400-year-old canvas was found by accident when the owners of a house near Toulouse went to fix a leak in the ceiling. The large canvas of the beheading of the general Holofernes by Judith, from the apocryphal Book of Judith, was painted between 1600 and 1610, specialists estimate. Many experts believe it could be a work by Caravaggio, while others have questioned its provenance. It will be kept away from the public eye for two years, cleaned and submitted to a deep examination.
New director for the Serpentine
Yana Peel has been appointed CEO of London’s Serpentine Galleries, replacing the outgoing director of 25 years Julia Peyton-Jones. After graduating from LSE and working at Goldman Sachs, Peel founded the Outset Contemporary Art Fund, an organisation that creates links between patrons and key people and institutions in the art world. The money raised goes towards helping galleries invest in emerging artists. She has been a trustee of the Serpentine since 2015 and is also co-chair of Hong Kong gallery Para Site. In her new mission, she will join Serpentine’s artistic director Hans Ulrich Obrist.
Damien Hirst’s controversial artworks could be leaking poisonous chemicals. His works involve dead animals preserved in tanks of formaldehyde. A team led by Italian chemist Pier Giorgio Righetti was testing a new sensor for the remote detection of formaldehyde gas, and discovered faint traces of potentially harmful fumes around two of Hirst’s artworks on show in a 2012 exhibition at the Tate Modern in London. For its part, the museum says nobody should be worried.
Saddam Hussein’s house turns into a museum
Thanks to funding from a British charity, a former palace of Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein is in the process of being transformed into a museum scheduled to open in September this year. The new attraction on the outskirts of Basra, south-east Iraq, will be the first museum to open in the country for decades. Aside from the obvious history of the building, the museum will also feature over 3,500 artefacts taken from Baghdad’s Iraq Museum.
Tony Conrad died
The avant-garde musician and filmmaker passed away at the age of 76. Born in Baltimore in 1940, Conrad was at the forefront of New York’s experimental music scene in the ‘60s, collaborating with La Monte Young and exploring drone and minimalism with Theatre of Eternal Music (aka the Dream Syndicate), an outfit which included John Cale among its members. His experimental films were also hugely influential, particularly 1966s The Flicker, which made audience members physically ill when it was first screened.
Temporary Centres Pompidou (maybe) in China and Korea
The famous museum of Paris plans to open a temporary exhibition space in Seoul next year, and another in China in 2018. Further details are not available due to worries of a similar fallout to that which came after a premature announcement by the French culture ministry of a Pompidou outpost for Shanghai in 2007, which apparently so perturbed the Chinese government that the deal subsequently fell through.
Makeover for the birthplace of Dada
In conjunction with Manifesta 11, the Cabaret Voltaire will be taken over by the biennial, radically altering the architecture and programme. Curator Christian Jankowski will declare the bar as the 27th guild house in Zurich – a special guild house for artists – and its spaces will be filled with performance and mystery. On the outside, a bay window will represent the transformation of the historic building from which the Dada art movement emerged 100 years ago. The building’s interior, in keeping with the motto of the biennial, will be turned into a working world along the lines of an office building. Anyone who wants to become a member of the guild of artists must put on a performance.
Featured image courtesy of LEON NEAL/AFP/Getty Images