Dead Celebs Haunt Miami Fair Performance, Raphael Sketch Sets Record, and More

Dead Celebs Haunt Miami Fair Performance, Raphael Sketch Sets Record, and More
Raphael's drawing "Head Of A Young Apostle" (1519-20)
(Photo by Carl Court/AFP/Getty Images)

Cobain, Jackson, and More Make Spectral Cameos in Miami: While we may have spotted P. Diddy, Will Ferrell, Chelsea Handler, and other celebrities stalking the halls of Art Basel Miami Beach, the new satellite fair Untitled was visited by the spirits of Kurt Cobain, Michael Jackson, Whitney Houston, and Amy Winehouse. At New York gallery (Art) Amalgamated's booth, artist Paco Cao was offering in-character tarot card readings while he channeled the spirits of those deceased pop stars. [TAN]

Raphael Sketch Shatters Work on Paper Record: Raphael's drawing "Head Of A Young Apostle" (1519-20) — a preparatory sketch for his masterpiece "Transfiguration," which hangs in Rome's Vatican Museum — set a new auction record for a work on paper when it tripled its low estimate at Sotheby's in London yesterday, selling for a whopping £29.7 million ($47.86 million) to an anonymous telephone bidder at the end of a 17-minute bidding war. "If you are lucky, at some point in your career a work like this comes along," said Sotheby's worldwide head of Old Masters drawings Gregory Rubinstein. ''A number of the world's greatest collectors stepped up tonight in recognition of the genius of Raphael and the extraordinary beauty of this drawing with its exceptional provenance." [Telegraph]


Kraftwerk Will Play Turbine Hall: After a sold-out series of shows at the Museum of Modern Art, the revered German electronic music band Kraftwerk will take over Tate Modern's Turbine Hall for a series of eight performances (February 6-14, 2013), playing one album cover-to-cover each night. "As a former power station, Tate Modern's Turbine Hall is an ideal venue for Kraftwerk's explorations of technology, energy and rhythm," said Tate Modern director Chris Dercon. "Bringing together music, video and performance, these events will be true gesamtkunstwerk — a total work of art." Tickets to each performance cost £60 ($96) and go on sale December 12. [Guardian]

Gallerist Defends Holocaust Ashes Painting: Martin Bryder, the owner of his namesake gallery in Lund, Sweden, sees a painting by Swedish artist Carl Michael von Hausswolff that is scheduled to go on view in an exhibition opening December 15 and which features the ashes of Holocaust victims the artist collected from the Majdanek death camp as "having no moral flaws," but, predictably, many observers beg to differ. "This action is an artistic provocation deserving only to be condemned," said a statement by the Majdanek Museum staff. "In addition, it is certain that the Swedish painter did not enter into possession of the ashes legally." [JTA]

Jay-Z Subway Chat Makes Artist a Viral Video Star: The New York artist Ellen Grossman became an unlikely overnight art star when her on-camera encounter with rapper and art collector Jay-Z — in a short video documentary on his series of concerts at the Barclays Center this fall — became an Internet sensation. In the video, Grossman, whose abstract sculptures and drawings meld artificial materials and organic forms, innocently asks the world's best-known living rapper — who sports a Jean-Michel Basquiat T-shirt during the encounter — "Are you famous?" [LATimes]

Getty Acquires Major Illuminated Manuscript: For almost $6.2 million, Los Angeles's J. Paul Getty Museum purchased "Roman de Gillion de Trazegnies" at Sotheby's in London yesterday. Created by Flemish illuminator Lieven van Lathem, the manuscript was loaned to the Getty in 2003 for the "Illuminating the Renaissance" exhibition. "The acquisition of this richly illuminated manuscript by the greatest illuminator of the Flemish high Renaissance adds a major masterpiece to the Getty Museum's collection and represents a landmark in the Department of Manuscripts' unrivaled record of superb acquisitions over the past 30 years," Getty director Timothy Potts said. [NYT]

Aspen Museum Honors Teresita Fernández: The Aspen Art Museum has opted to honor the Miami-born, Brooklyn-based artist Teresita Fernández with its 2013 Aspen Award for Art, which she will receive at the institution's annual ArtCrush gala on August 2, 2013. Fernández, who recently had her fifth show with Lehmann Maupin, joins past Aspen honorees including Tom Sachs, Roni Horn, Marilyn Minter, Ed Ruscha, Fred Tomaselli, and more. [Press Release]

Sculptures Worth $5 Million Seized From Smuggler: Five sculptures worth a total of $5 million that are believed to have been stolen by Manhattan antiquities dealer Subhash Kapoor were seized from Port Newark during a raid by Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), adding to the tally of more than $100-million worth of smuggled Indian artifacts he is said to have possessed at one time or another, a trove for which he now faces additional charges in India. "Kapoor is one of the most prolific commodities smugglers in the world today," said the special agent in charge at HSI New York, James T. Hayes Jr. "We urge the art community to help us identify artifacts sold or donated by Subhash Kapoor so that we can ensure their legitimacy." [EpochTimes]

Carnegie Museum Gets NEH Grant for Photo Archive Project: In support of its massive archive of the late Charles "Teenie" Harris, an African-American photographer from Pittsburgh who photographed his community over three decades, the Carnegie Museum of Art was awarded a $300,000 matching grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities. The generous grant will also support an archivist position, and will see the archive's contents made available online. [Pittsburgh Post-Gazette]

Utah Museum of Contemporary Art Leader Leaving: The Utah Museum of Contemporary Art has announced the departure of executive director Adam Price. Under his three years of leadership, the museum increased fundraising by 50 percent, built their audience up by a whopping 500 percent annually, and underwent a name change from their previous moniker, the Salt Lake Art Center. "I inherited the institution at the height of the Great Recession," Price said. "It’s been a lot of labor over the last three-plus years." [The Salt Lake Tribune]


Watch artist Ellen Grossman's subway chat with rapper Jay-Z:


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