Chuck Close Not a Fan of Tim Tebow, John Elderfield Joins Gagosian, and More Must-Read Art News

Chuck Close Not a Fan of Tim Tebow, John Elderfield Joins Gagosian, and More Must-Read Art News
Chuck Close
(© BFA)

– Chuck Close Slams Tim Tebow: Who knew the delightfully curmudgeonly artist was so opinionated about football? He told a reporter that he "hate[s]" the idea of Tim Tebow coming to play for the Jets. "He's going to be in the end zone praying? This is New York. He should go do that in, uh, the Midwest somewhere." [NYM]

 John Elderfield Joins Gagosian: The distinguished curator behind MoMA's blockbuster de Kooning retrospective is Larry Gagosian's latest hire. Elderfield, who left his position as MoMA's chief painting and sculpture curator in 2007, will organize museum-style shows at Gagosian in line with the gallery's historic Picasso exhibition series. "The worlds of museums and galleries keep getting closer and closer," said Elderfield. [ITA]


– Brazil Buoyant Museum Attendance Stats: The Art Newspaper has released its annual report on museum attendance. The biggest surprise? Brazil is an art viewer magnet! Rio's Centro Cultural Banco do Brasil hosted three of the 10 most visited exhibitions of 2011. Paris's Louvre continued to dominate the overall attendance figures with 8.8 million visitors last year, while the Metropolitan Museum's blockbuster Alexander McQueen exhibition helped it surpass the British Museum to land in second place, with just over 6 million visitors. [TAN]

Art Dubai Bans Arab Spring-Inspired Artworks: A number of protest-themed works have been removed by art fair officials, including a painting by Libyan artist Chadi Zaqzouq showing a masked activist and a piece by Moroccan Zakaria Ramhani picturing a naked female protester. Two other pieces have also been censored for being "offensive for the imam Ali" (the first Shiite imam). [Le Parisien]

– Museum to Sell Major Sherman: Cleveland's Akron Art Museum is auctioning off Cindy Sherman's "Orange Sweater" at Christie's in May to raise money for acquisitions. Another edition of the same photograph sold for almost $4 million last year, setting a world record for a photograph by a contemporary artist. “What’s the greater community benefit, keeping the ‘Orange Sweater’ and showing it once every five years, or having a few more million buy works of art?" asked the museum's director. [Plain Dealer

– Skarstedt Opens London BranchSkarstedt Gallery is the latest contemporary art dealership to launch an outpost in London. The gallery, which specializes in 1980s American art, will open a 2,500-square-foot space in Mayfair in June. [Bloomberg]

– Getty Gets Grant to Archive Contemporary Collection: The Getty Research Institute has received a $230,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities to catalogue the Harald Szeemann Archive, a 1,000-box collection of photographs, letters, and books from the late Swiss museum director and curator. The Getty will hire two full-time staffers to work for two years on the project, and will post a table of contents online. [LAT]

Controversy at the British Institute of Professional Photography: The BIPP, whose annual competition rewards the "best work from the UK and abroad," is considering changing its rules following accusations of corruption after four of the seven judges won prizes. "The competition has lost its credibility," said former winner Stuart Freeman. [BBC]

– The Curator Stays in the Picture: The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences has hired two new staffers for its forthcoming film museum on the LACMA campus. Heather Cochran, a longtime champion of the museum plan, will be its managing director, while fundraising expert Bill Kramer, who has worked for the Sundance Institute, will oversee development. [LAT]

– Handlers of Stolen Lowry Paintings Jailed: Two men linked to a violent art robbery in 2007 have been sentenced to more than three years in prison. Four individuals stole 14 artworks by LS Lowry from the family of art dealer Ivan Aird, threatening his wife and daughter. [Guardian]

 Aitken Lights Up DC: Last night, California-based artist Doug Aitken made good on his ambitious plan to turn the circular façade of Washington's Hirshhorn Museum into a giant screen. Eleven projectors transformed the imposing structure's 725-foot outer wall with the multimedia work "Song 1," as attendees watched the action through the cherry blossoms. [WaPo]


Protesters seize Wall Street's "Charging Bull" sculpture during the "1,000,000 Hoodies March" in memory of Trayvon Martin:


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