Otto Dix Trove Unearthed in Bavaria, Steven Soderbergh Told Not to Leave His Day Job, and More Must-Read Art News

Otto Dix Trove Unearthed in Bavaria, Steven Soderbergh Told Not to Leave His Day Job, and More Must-Read Art News
Otto Dix "Self portrait," 1913
(Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons)

Trove of Otto Dix Paintings, Children's Books Found: A collection of art by that cold-eyed master of the grotesque has been found in a Bavarian estate linked to a Dusseldorf doctor who supported Dix, even after his wife left him for the artist. The works include three watercolors and one study for a portrait of dealer Alfred Flechtheim, all dated from 1922-1925, plus, intriguingly, a number of children's books by the artist. [Reuters]


Art Critic Issues Soderbergh a Warning: In a fairly patronizing remonstrance, Telegraph art critic Alastair Sooke responded to the news of director Steven Soderbergh's plan to become a painter by warning him that art is "hard, almost Sisyphean work," and that "making a great artwork isn't about slapping a few bits of paint ona canvas, or churning out a copycat piece to flog to a gullible collector." Sooke then throws water on the filmmaker's "violon d'Ingres"by reminding that, to paraphrase Rilke, a true artist has to be compelled to their vocation, and not merely go about it by choice. Let'ssee if an art critic character turns up in one of Soderbergh's remaining films, and meets an unfortunate end. [Telegraph]


Stolen Rembrandt Case Gets Murkier: Investigators are refusing to return the Rembrandt drawing that was Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-14779">Banksy-airs-paean-to-pranksters-on-british-tv-rembrandt-drawing-stolen-from-la-ritz-carleton-and-more-must-read-art-news/" target="_blank">stolen in August from the lobby of a Ritz-Carleton hotel to its previous owner, the Linearis Institute. After questions arose surrounding the work's authenticity, police began consulting experts to verify it, but have been unable to do so. What's more, investigators now question whether Linearis actually owns the drawing, as it has been unable to provide provenance for the work. Representatives from the institute will have to come to Los Angeles and submit to a two-hour interrogation before the drawing is returned. [LAT

Smithsonian Plans Show on Jefferson's Slaves: An exhibition on Thomas Jefferson and slavery will open at the National Museum of American History in January 2012. The show will examine the lives of six families at Monticello and discuss evidence that Jefferson fathered children with one of his slaves, Sally Hemmings. The Smithsonian's National Museum of African American History and Culture, which opens its own building in 2015, has organized the exhibition alongside the Thomas Jefferson Foundation at Monticello. [NYT]   

Art Lost in Norway Bombing: Following a terrorist attack in Oslo in July 22, concern is mounting surrounding the fate of large numbers of artworks owned or on display in government buildings. Damaged buildings contained works by artists including Munch, Christian Krohg, and Anne Katrine Dolven. Forty-three works loaned by the National Museum of Art, Architecture, and Design to government buildings were damaged, including works by Krohg, Dolven, and Jakob Weidemann. The extent of the damage is difficult to determine, however, as many buildings remain too unstable or toxic to enter. [TAN]

BBC Wins Award for UK's Ugliest Building: MediaCityUK wins the 2011 Carbuncle Cup for Britain's ugliest new building. The "concatenation of anemic buildings" is the new regional headquarters for the BBC; Granada TV moves in next year. The shortlist for this year's award, compiled by Building Design Magazine, includes the Museum of Liverpool and the Newport Railway Station. [Guardian]

Sleep Artist Becomes Sensation: Artist Lee Hadwin has become something of a cause celebre in Britain for his unusual practice he only creates his drawings when he's asleep. Galleries are now showing his art, but he professes to not remember making the work, or even have much enthusiasm for it. "It's never interested me, art, at all," he told the BBC, adding that there are some factors that can encourage his sleep-arting behavior. "I shouldn't say this on TV, but alcohol is a prompt. If I've been drinking that tends to bring it on more." [BBC]  

Curator Peter Eeley on PS1's 9/11 Show: Bloomberg sits down with Peter Eeley to discuss his exhibition on 9/11, "a dynamic, thought-provoking show... that's likely to offend no one." While avoiding explicit visual representations of the twin towers, Eeley said he hopes to encourage viewers "to think about the impact of 9/11 on our cultural collective imagination. If you were in a bar a couple of months after September 11, and you saw two cups next to each other, you saw the towers." He also poses the valuable and poignant question, "How do you deal with visual art when the visual itself was part of the weapons deployed?" [Bloomberg

Folk Wisdom on a Dying Museum: Over at Bad at Sports, Caroline Picard observes that the American Folk Art Museum (AFAM),with its triumphant opening in the early 2000s and its subsequent struggles with a chairman's fraud and loan defaults, has been a consistently sharp indicator of our economic environment. She then writes an open letter to the AFAM ("Your presence has helped me develop over the years") as well as to MoMA ("Please don't tear down the AFAM building"). [Bad at Sports

Christie's Appoints New Top Lawyer: Christie's announced the appointment of Nicholas Eldred as group general council, based in London. Eldred joins Christie's after 10 years at the BBC. [Press Release] 

Behold Scotland's Graffiti Castle: The Earl of Glasgow has written to the government's historical society to see whether the paintings on his 13th century Scottish castle bright, psychedelic designs of leafy trees and bug-eyed girls reminiscent of Lisa Frank folders can remain on the exterior indefinitely. The earl commissioned a trio of Brazilian street artists to let loose on his castle in 2007 with a series of murals, but promised locals he would only keep them up for three years. Do yourself a favor and click though for photos. [Daily Mail]  

Art San Diego Opens: A new fair featuring contemporary art and furniture design in San Diego launches its third edition today. Galleries from Mexico, such as Mexico City's ECOH Galeria, and California, such as Culver City's Koplin Del Rio, are particularly well represented. [Press Release]

VIDEO OF THE DAY: Beginning September 15, The Downtown NY Scene Film Series, in partnership with The Phillips Collection, Corcoran Gallery of Art and The National Gallery of Art in Washington D.C., will be screening several films focused on the underground art scene of New York in the late 1970s and 1980s. From "Jean-Michel Basquiat: The Radiant Child," born out of a rare interview with Basquiat from over 20 years ago, to "Downtown 81," a feature film starring the late painter from 1981, the series is a don't-miss feature of this fall's D.C. art line-up. [Washington Post]

Watch the trailer for "Jean-Michel Basquiat: The Radiant Child" below: