Christie's Exec is Mad for January Jones, Teamsters Petition Sotheby's Shareholders, and More Must-Read Art News

Christie's Exec is Mad for January Jones, Teamsters Petition Sotheby's Shareholders, and More Must-Read Art News
Actress January Jones
(Photo © BFA)

Christie's Exec Woos January Jones: At a special screening of a new film about Yves Klein in New York last week, Loic Gouzer, a "darkly handsome Frenchman" who is also a postwar and contemporary specialist at Christie's (where a show-stopping work by Klein hits the auction block tomorrow), was more than sold on "Mad Men" actress January Jones. "I promised myself I wouldn’t propose tonight," Gouzer said by way of an introduction before the screening. Later that evening — and after some encouragement from the Daily News's supportive nightlife reporter — Jones was seen sharing a cigarette with the "Gallic Galihad," and Gouzer may, or may not, have gotten her number. [NYDN]

Sotheby's Art Handlers Head to Shareholders Meeting: Tomorrow Sotheby's will hold its annual shareholders meeting in New York, and art handlers who own shares in the company will attend in hopes of finally being heard by their bosses, who have locked them out of their jobs since August of 2011. "Management’s decision to lock out the workers during negotiations," said Carin Zelenko of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, "was an effort to starve them into submission." The shareholders are already facing pressure from a union-affiliated investment group to shake up its board. Should be interesting. [Bloomberg]

 

— More Woes for Knoedler: Add the family of California master Richard Diebenkorn to those piling onto the now-shuttered Knoedler & Company for selling fakes. Family members are now accusing the gallery of selling works as part of Diebenkorn's "Ocean Park" series even after the family met with the gallery and expressed doubts: “They didn’t look quite right, and we said, ‘The provenance is wacky and the story behind the provenance makes no sense,’” explained Richard Grant, Diebenkorn's son-in-law and director of his namesake foundation. Knoedler's representatives dispute the account, and say they have proof that the family assented to the attribution. Former MoMA curator John Elderfield, who accompanied the Diebenkorns at the long-ago powwow, is supporting their side of the story. [NYT]

— The Secret History of "The Scream": The famous Edvard Munch pastel, which sold last week for a record $119.9 million, has a hitherto undisclosed back story. For 17 years, until 2006, the masterpiece quietly rested in the vaults of the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., on loan from owner Petter Olsen, and shown almost exclusively to visiting scholars and students. The museum may have hoped to acquire the piece, either through donation or purchase. It appears they were priced out. [TAN]

Matthew Day Jackson Becomes Racecar Driver: Rising art star Matthew Day Jackson is taking his studio on the road — or, more specifically, the race track. The Brooklyn-based sculptor, whose work is on view in Hauser & Wirth's Frieze New York booth at Frieze New York and who curated a new exhibition at its Upper East Side gallery — is embarking on an unconventional sculpture-performance hybrid project. "I’m going to be drag racing for the next year or two," the artist revealed, racing in a car built by McKinney Corp. that will become a sculpture at the end of his racing career. Collectors can sponsor his team for as little as $500 or, for $60,000, can name the car, choose its colors, and have their name on it. [TAN]

Stolen Masterpieces Recovered in Corsican Parking Lot: Four paintings that were stolen last year from the Palais Fesch-Musée des Beaux-Arts in the Corsican city of Ajaccio — including Bellini's "Virgin and Child" and Poussin's "Midas at the Source of the River Pactole" — were found in perfect condition in a parking lot on the outskirt of town after the case's lead investigator received an anonymous tip on Friday night. Last February a guard at the museum — which houses France's second-largest collection of Italian paintings after the Louvre — turned himself in, but when he led police to the car where he had stashed the stolen paintings its windows had been smashed and the loot was gone. [Libération, Le Monde]

Monaco Collector Has No LOVE for Robert Indiana: Joao Tovar, an art collector based in Monaco who has spent the last four years buying Robert Indiana sculptures in the style of his ubiquitous "LOVE" sculptures — though they read "PREM," the Hindu word for love translated into English — is suing the artist in his home state of Maine after losing a similar federal case in New York last year. Tovar alleges that he received a signed certificate of authenticity for the works, but that Indiana subsequently renounced authorship of the sculptures, reducing their value from an estimated $1.5 million in 2009 to, according to the lawsuit, "little more than the materials from which they were made." [Bangor Daily News]

How Much is Too Much to Pay for Airport Art?: That's the question raised by Steven Waldeck's "Flight Paths," an installation that would supposedly create a "virtual forest" at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport in Atlanta. The project's budget has swelled to $4 million, more than triple what it was supposed to cost when it was originally proposed a decade ago. If the city council OKs the pricey work, it will be paid for with funds set aside from airport fees. [AP]

Setback for Harvard Museums: Those anticipating the reopening of the Harvard Art Museums will have to wait a little longer, as the $350-million project won't be completed until a year later then planned. The delay until late 2014 is due to the complex nature of the renovation and expansion. “This is in many ways our one chance to get it right, so we don’t want to rush things,” said Tom Lentz, director of the museums. [Boston Globe]

ICP Gets a New Director: Manhattan's International Center of Photography has appointed Mark Robbins, dean of the School of Architecture at Syracuse University, as its new director. Robbins, who is also a photographer himself, will replace Willis E. Hartshorn, who stepped down last summer. [NYT]

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