Pussy Riot Gets Chelsea Solo Show, World's Longest Artwork Will Span Britain, and More Must-Read Art News

Pussy Riot Gets Chelsea Solo Show, World's Longest Artwork Will Span Britain, and More Must-Read Art News
Members of the punk band Pussy Riot are escorted inside a Moscow courthouse
(Natalia Kolesnikova/AFP/GettyImages)

 Pussy Riot Gets Chelsea Solo Show: The three members of Russian feminist punk band Pussy Riot may have been sentenced to two years in prison last week, but that won't keep them from making their Chelsea debut next month in a pop-up exhibition at 19th Street gallery Lombard-Freid Projects that will also double as a fundraiser for the jailed rockers, backed by Amnesty International. "This is not about raising awareness or protesting anymore," said gallery partner Lea Freid. "This is about raising money for the women, their families, and defense." [Bloomberg]

 Roman Wall to Anchor World's Longest Artwork: The London Olympics may be over, but their cultural component, London 2012, continues to break records. New York artist collective YesYesNo is planning to set a new one with "Connecting Light," a 73-mile-long installation of 450 LED-filled weather balloons running the entire length of the ancient Roman rampart Hadrian's Wall, which spans the width of the island of Great Britain. "We are imagining a reverse wall — an inverse of the border," said Zachary Lieberman, the collective's founder. "The border was built to separate people, and we want to bring them together again." [Telegraph]

 

 Prosecutors File Arguments in Effort to Return Cambodian Statue: The fight for a 10th-century Cambodian statue rages on between federal prosecutors and auction giant Sotheby's. Prosecutors filed court papers on Monday accusing the auction house of attempting to sell the 600-pound sculpture despite knowing it had been illegally looted from its temple home. They cite experts who testify that the sculpture was too remotely located and too heavy to have been carried off until adequate roads were built somewhat recently, after export bans on cultural property came into effect. [NYT]

– Jean Nouvel Nabs Chinese National Art Museum Gig: It hasn't been made official yet, but reports strongely suggest that French architect Jean Nouvel beat out a high-profile short list including Zaha Hadid and Frank Gehry for the most prestigious architecture commission in China since the Olympics: the new headquarters for the National Art Museum of China. Architectural Record first reported the decision, which has supposedly already been made known to finalists, but won't be made official until afterthe Communist Party's October leadership transition; ARTINFO China has it confired from an anonymous source inside NAMOC. [ARTINFO China]

– Cleveland Museum Gets $7.5 Mil: The Cleveland Museum has received $7.5 million from the Jack, Joseph, and Morton Mandel Foundation. The gift brings the institution within $100 million of its $350-million fundraising goal for an eight-year expansion and renovation project. In recognition, the museum — which was most recently in the news for its controversial acquisition practices — will rename the Armor Court after electrical equipment baron Morton Mandel. [Plain Dealer]

– Crowd-Funded Tesla Museum Reaches Goal: With 39 days to go, the Indiegogo campaign launched by Matthew Inman, founder of the Internet comic The Oatmeal, has already raised more than $70,000 over its goal of $850,000, which is the sum that the State of New York has pledged to match to help the nascent institution buy the former laboratory of beloved underdog inventor Nikolas Tesla in Shoreham, New York. The eccentric Serbian-American's lab, called Wardenclyffe and designed by esteemed New York architect Stanford White, was slated to be turned into a retail store if the museum plan didn't succeed. [LAT]

– New Gallery Opening on Lower East Side's Ludlow Street: Though New York's LES gallery scene is structured around the dense spine of spaces on Orchard Street, the next block over is starting to see some action. William Holman Gallery is set to join Blackston and Klaus von Nichtssagend Gallery on Ludlow when it opens at number 65 on October 4 with a group exhibition of the gallery's nine represented artists. In addition to the artists in its inaugural exhibition, William Holman represents the estates of Olin Downs and late Harper's Bazaar editor Carmel Snow. [Bowery Boogie]

– Soil Looters Threaten Ancient Chinese Tomb: A 2,100-year-old tomb where a perfectly preserved female corpse was discovered has become a target for soil looters who believe the dirt at the Han Dynasty site in Hunan Province is particularly rich due to its exceptional layout. "Some citizens say the tomb's good feng shui creates better soil," said Hunan Provincial Museum curator Li Jianming. [China.org]

– Wine Sale Measures Success of Online-Only AuctionsChristie's CEO Steven Murphy has been aggressively pushing online sales, and the house's recent online-only wine sale served as a bellwether for the endeavor's future success. One quarter of the online clients were first-time buyers with the house, while many others — including an Asian client who bought the top lot, a $42,350 case of 1982 Chateau Lafite — were existing customers buying wine for the first time. [Bloomberg via AMM]

 Museo Tamayo Reopens With Renewed Focus on Contemporary: Mexico City's Museo Tamayo Arte Contemporaneo is reopening on August 26 after a year's closure and $7 million in renovations. The refurbished institution features 40 percent more exhibition space, which will be filled with seven new shows, including a retrospective of the museum's founder, painter and muralist Rufino Tamayo, and a display of global contemporary artwork featuring Pierre HuygheMichael Stevenson, and Ryan Gander. [TAN]

– Australian Artist Stages Public Potty Protest Performance: In response to growing outrage over the shortage of public toilets at Henley Beach in Adelaide, South Australia, artist Andrew Baines staged an unusual protest sit-in — atop toilets parked on the public beach. Titled "Coalition of the Constipated," the surreal performance — which featured a local radio host and a retired politician, among others — will serve as inspiration for a painting that Baines will show early next year, by which time, hopefully, the toilet shortage will have been remedied. [ARTINFO Australia]

VIDEO OF THE DAY

Australian artist Andrew Baines's "Coalition of the Constipated" protest art performance in Adelaide 

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