Hirst Forger Pleads Guilty to Mark Gagosian Opening, Deitch Snags Steven Cohen, and More

Hirst Forger Pleads Guilty to Mark Gagosian Opening, Deitch Snags Steven Cohen, and More
Hirst, who saw all 11 Gagosian galleries debut his global "Spot" exhibition yesterday, may be unhappy to hear that on the same day a man plead guilty to selling forged "Spot" prints.
(Courtesy Getty Images)

– Bad Timing: New York real estate broker and amateur art dealer Richard Silver pleaded guilty to forgery in the third degree for selling several fake "Spot" prints purportedly by Damien Hirst on eBay. Unlucky for him, he happened to enter his plea on the same day that Hirst's "Spot" exhibition opened at Gagosians around the world. Silver said he believed the works were genuine when he purchased them. [WSJ]  

– Steven Cohen Joins MOCA Board: The hedge fund manager and legendary art collector is the latest power player to join the board at the Jeffrey Deitch-helmed museum. Previous additions include flashy collectors Peter M. Brant and Victor Pinchuk. Cohen, whose collection has been valued at an estimated $1 billion, also sits on MoMA's painting and sculpture committee. [LAT]


– Patti Smith Cancels Concert: The musician and artist canceled a private show she had planned for residents of the Chelsea Hotel after some said they would not attend. The residents suspected Smith was performing at the request of the building's owner, who is currently feuding with occupants. "My motivation [to perform] was solely to serve the tenants," Smith said. "If this serves them better, I am satisfied." [NYT]

White Cube Hong Kong Opens Next March: Located at 50 Connaught Road, the first Asian outpost of the blue chip London gallery will open to the public on March 2 with Gilbert & George's exhibition "London Pictures," their largest series of works to date. [Press Release]

Belgian Authorities Seek to Save Van Gogh's House: The municipality of Colfontaine has begun legal proceedings to acquire the now-derelict house occupied by Vincent van Gogh when he was an evangelist among the coalminers in the village of Wasmes. It could be open to the public in 2015, when the nearby city of Mons will be the European Capital of Culture. [TAN]

New Managing Curator for d'Offay's Artist Rooms: Amy Dickson has been appointed managing curator for the Artist Rooms, comprising 725 works formerly owned by retired dealer Anthony d'Offay and sold to Tate for a fifth of their value on the condition that they would tour the country and be shown in solo presentations only. Dickson takes over from Lucy Askew, who has joined the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art in Edinburgh. [Art Daily

– Better Late than Never?: The University of Iowa's art building will receive over $32.5 million from FEMA for permanent relocation and improvements following a devastating 2008 flood. [Press Citizen]

– Art’s Well That Ends Well: The mysterious buyer of a $20.8 million Gerhard Richter painting sold at Sotheby's in November has donated it to the Israeli Museum. Though the purchaser was initially rumored to be French business magnate Bernard Arnault, it turns out it was Lily Safra, who donated the painting to the museum in memory of her late husband. [NYT]

– Was "Red" Wrong?: Critic Philip Kennicott takes a red pencil to the Tony Award-winning play about Mark Rothko. "Worse than conflating pop and minimalism, the play defines them both as generically pretty and popular," he writes. [WaPo]

– Prized Museum at Odds with Russian Church: For 90 years, Holy Transfiguration Cathedral in Perm, Russia served as a deconsecrated gallery of antiquities, folk art and avant-garde Russian paintings. Now, the Church wants the space back, and the collection and staff at the “Hermitage of the Urals” may be out on the street if they can't reach a settlement. [Russian Times]

– Jonathan Jones Hates on Art: The Guardian critic wants to know the most detestable work of art you've ever seen. His own nomination? Jake and Dinos Chapman's "Ubermensch," a lifelike 12 foot-tall fiberglass image of Stephen Hawking in his wheelchair atop rocky pinnacle. [Guardian]


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