NYC Dealers Shun Amazon, Bronx Museum's $1M Shopping Spree, and More

NYC Dealers Shun Amazon, Bronx Museum's $1M Shopping Spree, and More
(Photo courtesy OmirOnia via sotck.xchng / Illustration by ARTINFO)

– Amazon to Launch Art Site: Following the launch of Amazon Wine last fall, the online retailer is planning to unveil a virtual art gallery later this year. Amazon plans to get 125 galleries on board, but has had difficulty garnering support from New York’s mid-level dealers, including Eleven Rivington, On Stellar Rays, Vogt Gallery and Zach Feuer. “I didn’t really have to think much about it and said it wasn’t for me,” said Augusto Arbizo, Eleven Rivington founder. “I have said no to most e-commerce opportunities for the simple reason that I just do not have that much inventory. And we work with very few artists who do editions or prints.” [TAN]

– Bronx Museum Raises $1M for Acquisitions: On Wednesday the Bronx Museum announced that it had raised $1 million for its acquisitions program and put the cash to good use, snapping up works by Glenn LigonAlvin BaltropElizabeth Catlett, and Bronx native Vito Acconci, among others. The purchases are a birthday gift of sorts for the institution, which marks its 40th anniversary this year. "These new acquisitions highlight the Bronx connections of many contemporary artists — illustrating how the borough has served as inspiration for a wide range of artists over the past 40 years — and showing how themes that are important in our community are being explored by artists around the world," said the museum's executive director Holly Block. [Press Release]


– New Whitney Will Be Weather-Proof: A preview of the new West Village Whitney space reveals that the museum is undergoing extensive storm proofing after the disaster of Hurricane Sandy. “It’s the worst thing that ever happened to us and the best thing,” director Adam D. Weinberg said. “We will now have a building in which we can be assured that the art will never be at risk.” [NYT]

– Are the U.K.'s Free Museums Overcharging?: Though admission to the U.K.'s national museums is free, Brits have been paying increasingly steep prices to see those institutions' special exhibitions, including the whopping £16.50 ($25.25) that Tate Britain is currently charging visitors to its LS Lowry retrospective, prompting Guardian art critic Jonathan Jones to ponder: "Are ticket prices for art shows going nuts?" The Lowry ticket price is the highest to date, surpassing the £15 paid by visitors to the British Museum's Pompeii exhibition, and the £15.50 charged to enter the Victoria & Albert's David Bowie show or Tate Modern's Roy Lichtenstein retrospective. [Guardian]

– Warhol Foundation Settles Suit: After a two-year legal battle, the Andy Warhol Foundation has settled with the Philadelphia Indemnity Insurance Company over two lawsuits filed by collectors Joe Simon and Susan Shaer in 2007. The company will pay a large portion of the legal fees that resulted from the 2007 suits, which amounted to about $7 million. “We’re very pleased,” said Joel Wachs, the president of the Warhol Foundation. “It’s been a long tough battle, but it’s been well worth it.” [AITAN]

– Gehry Gets Candid: Frank Gehry sat down with Foreign Policy magazine for an interview that covered his distaste for Dubai’s architecture and love of Hillary Clinton. He also had some things to say about Michael Bloomberg: “I think the best thing is to have a benevolent dictator — who has taste! It's really hard to get consensus, to have a tastemaker. There is no Robert Moses anymore. Michael Bloomberg wants to be one. In fact, he promised he would build 10 more of my buildings in New York, but, you know, he hasn't yet. Architecture's difficult … [sigh].” [Object Lessons, FP]

– Nick Cave's "Heard" Migrates to Denver: As part of Denver's Biennial of the Americas, and in conjunction with his major survey at the Denver Art Museum, Nick Cave will stage his public performance piece "Heard" — a Creative Time commission that premiered in March as part of Grand Central Terminal's centennial celebrations — in the Mile High City's Civic Center park on July 19. Titled "HEARD•DAM," the performance will be the centerpiece of the biennial's "Denver Night!" celebrations. It's already sold out, but can be live streamed online and at select locations inside the museum. [Denver Post]

– Western Art Museum To Open With a Chuck Wagon: What was once the San Antonio Central Library, and was recently the Hertzberg Circus Museum, will open in October in San Antonio as the Briscoe Western Art Museum. The museum, dedicated to the American West, is planning a Western-themed celebration for its opening. “We're just trying to create a festival-like atmosphere that's evocative and indicative of elements of the American West, artistically, culturally, historically,” Executive Director Steven M. Karr said. “Whether it is charrería or trick ropers, whether it's someone with a chuck wagon serving up peach cobbler out of a Dutch oven, it doesn't matter. What matters is that it resembles elements of the West that we all know.” [San Antonio Express]