Over the last three years, Gagosian Gallery and Picasso biographer John Richardson have staged three shows—one on the artist’s late paintings, one on his “Mediterranean years,” and one on his affair with Marie-Thérèse Walter—that can be counted among the best recent exhibitions anywhere. Now, in a long and remarkable piece of reporting, Katya Kazakina previews the fourth show in the series, which will focus on Picasso’s years in Vallauris with the artist Françoise Gilot, who became his lover at age 21. “The years of Vallauris are enormously important,” according to Richardson. “He revolutionized the whole craft of ceramics, turning it into an art form. He reinvented the art of lithography, which had been a boring medium, into a major medium. He breaks all the rules.” Gilot, who today is 90 and lives in New York, eventually left Picasso, taking their two children and later marrying the great polio vaccine developer Jonas Salk. “I am very independent,” she told Kazakina, reflecting on her time with Picasso. “I was a completely new type of woman for him.” Opening on April 30, the exhibition will likely draw enormous crowds—and skyrocket the market for Picasso’s art from the period, as the other shows did. “Gagosian is a great marketer,” one Picasso collector observed, understating the situation.
– QUOTE OF THE DAY –
“[Andy Warhol] would have been a master of the internet. He would have set up an auction website, a gossip website, a film sharing website. He was someone who liked to collect images and liked to collect things, and have his finger in a lot of different pies.” – Artist and former Factory regular Jeremy Deller on the Pop artist, who died 25 years ago today.
– MUST READ –
Groundbreaking, Indeed – Today President Obama will break ground on the National Museum of African American History and Culture, a new $500 million Smithsonian institution being built by the architect David Adjaye and slated to open in 2015. (AP)
Ai Weiwei Film Coming to U.S. – Alison Klayman‘s Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry, which won the aptly named Special Jury Prize for Spirit of Defiance at this year’s Sundance, has been picked up by Sundance Selects for release this summer. (NYT)
Doug Wheeler Speaks – Tyler Green has pulled off the incredible coup of landing only the third interview ever with the revered artist, whose oneiric light installation at David Zwirner Gallery has drawn enormous lines. (MAN)
The Great Northwest Art Selloff? – Washington senator Karen Keiser, a Democrat of all things, has proposed liquidating the state’s 4,600-piece art collection to help fill a $1 billion budget gap, even though this kind of this very rarely works. (LAT)
Yummy, a Claes Oldenburg Survey – The outsize, crowd-pleasing show Claes Oldenburg: The ’60s, an exhibition of the Pop artist’s witty and often fast-food-based sculptures from the era, has opened in Vienna and will head to MoMA next year. (WSJ)
Clone-a Lisa? – The Prado is displaying a once-grime-encrusted copy of the Mona Lisa for the first time since an extensive restoration determined that it was painted by one of Leonardo’s disciples rather than the master himself, and people are flocking to see it. (AP)
– MARKET –
Cindy Sherman, by the Numbers – Just in time for the protean artist’s MoMA survey, Sarah Hanson takes an in-depth look at the way her work has appreciated over time to garner $3.9 million at Christie’s in 2011, then a record for any photograph sold at auction. (Artinfo)
– IN & OUT –
Timothy Potts, the incoming director of the oil-rich Getty Museum in Los Angeles, will be making a base salary of $690,000 plus a signing bonus of $150,000, the museum has disclosed (that’s still about half of what Glenn Lowry makes). (LAT)
– VIDEO –
In memory of Andy Warhol, here’s a clip from arguably his most influential art film, Empire (1964).