Gagosian's Girlfriend Lands Town & Country Cover, See Twitter’s New Art Deco HQ, and More

Gagosian's Girlfriend Lands Town & Country Cover, See Twitter’s New Art Deco HQ, and More
Shala Monroque on the cover of the Town & Country January 2012 issue
(Courtesy Town & Country)

 Shala Monroque, Cover Girl: The girlfriend of Larry Gagosian and creative director of Dasha Zhukova’s Garage magazine graces the cover of Town & Country’s January issue. “She is the ‘it’ girl but still only known by those really in the know. We wanted to put her out there early and let our readers in Oklahoma get to see who she is,” said editor Jay Fielden. Who she is may be an easier question to answer than what she does. As the Daily Beast notes, "Monroque appears constantly to be in the right place at the right time, yet her job is harder to define." [Daily Beast]

See Twitter's New Art Deco Digs: Twitter recently announced a full-fledged overhaul of the site, but that's not the only part of the tech business getting a makeover. In about six months, the micro-blogging company is moving its new headquarters to an old Art Deco building in San Francisco, built the same year as the Golden Gate Bridge. The place is certainly a fixer-upper — according to Venturebeat, almost every floor is gutted and ready for renovation. [VentureBeat]

 “A Moral Blight”: Writing in Bloomberg, the Atlantic's Jeffrey Goldberg runs a scathing review of Wal-Mart heiress Alice Walton’s Crystal Bridges Museum, which opened last month in Bentonville, Arkansas. He calls it “a moral tragedy, very much like the corporation that provided Walton with the money to build a billion-dollar art museum during a terrifying recession.” Over at the Wall Street Journal, Judith Dobrzynski focuses more on the art than the moral implications, noting that while the early 20th-century works are strong, later works are “mostly mediocre.” [Bloomberg, WSJ]  

Lady Gaga Strips Down for Bennett: What do you get the Lady Gaga fan who has everything? A nude portrait of the singer drawn by Tony Bennett, of course! Bidding on the charcoal sketch begins at $5,000 on eBay, and all proceeds benefit an arts charity. How did Lady Gaga feel about stripping down for the 85-year-old crooner, with whom she recently collaborated on a song for his new album? “I felt shy and thought, ‘It’s Tony Bennett, why am I naked?’” [Guardian]

$83 Million Chinese Vase Still Unpaid For: The buyer of the most expensive Chinese artwork ever sold at auction — a Qing-dynasty porcelain vase which sold for 50 times its presale estimate at Bainbridges, West London — has yet to cough up the money a full year after the sale. "It doesn't look as if payment is imminent," said a dealer in the know. [Bloomberg

Strike at Paris's Musée des Arts Décoratifs: Some 150 employees at the French museum of applied arts walked out last Thursday, December 8, asking for a pay raise. During the strike, the permanent collection was closed, and the temporary exhibitions, including one on Jean-Paul Goude, were accessible for free. Unions and museum management are meeting today. [artclair]

Demolition in Christchurch: Conservation advocates are up in arms over the widespread — and they argue, unnecessary — demolition of historic buildings in New Zealand’s second-largest city. The government plans to demolish 50 percent of buildings within the city’s Central Business District. [TAN]

Damien Hirst Outtakes: The Los Angeles Times’ Jori Finkel shares some anecdotes that didn’t make it into her recent article about Damien Hirst and his mega exhibition of spot paintings. The outtakes — including how much the artist paid to buy back one of the five original spot paintings — might be even more fun than the article itself. [LAT]

Occupy the Scrap Heap: City officials in Calgary have removed an eight-foot-tall twisty metal sculpture left by Occupy protesters as a symbol of the movement after a court injunction forced their camp to close last Friday. What's become of the sculpture, left by an anonymous artist named D.H., now that the camp is gone is unclear. [CTV

Herman Hertzberger Honored: The Royal Institute of British Architects has named the 79-year-old Dutch architect the recipient of the 2012 Royal Gold Medal. Given in recognition of a lifetime’s work, the award is approved personally by the Queen of England. [Archinect]

Science Art!: Wired has compiled a collection of the coolest scientific research graphics from 2011 for your viewing pleasure, and they are pretty incredible. The charts are beautiful as well as efficient: delicate 3D grids show the feeding patterns of the leaping blenny fish, a golden circle that looks kind of like a Philip Guston displays patterns from bees' communicative dances, and an abstract gray pattern shows the migration of frogs in Colombia. [Wired]

Swim at Your Own Risk: Despite passing muster with New York City’s Department of Health, Carsten Höller’s “Super Psycho Tank” — a sensory deprivation pool that is part of his current exhibition at the New Museum — may not be entirely sanitary after all. A visitor e-mail Gothamist last week claiming that she and her boyfriend contracted an ear infection from the artwork. Ew. [ITA]