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Monday 30th January 2012Robert Rauschenberg Foundation Offers Grants to 9 Arts Organisations

The Robert Rauschenberg Foundation was founded in 1990, by American artist Robert Rauschenberg, who sadly died in 2008. The foundation has a mission to promote awareness of the causes and groups that the artist held dear, and to provide philanthropic and educational initiatives to preserve the legacy of Rauschenberg's life and artwork globally. 
 
It has just been announced that the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation has released its list of recipients of the new Artistic Innovation and Collaboration (AIC) grant programme. The AIC is the first competitive grant that the foundation has offered nationally, within the United States, and has seen around $800,000 go out to a variety of groups and projects. 
 
Last year, the foundation invited 65 organisations to apply for the grant, with 9 grants being awarded. The following organisations were successful in this first round of awards:
  • Ballroom Marfa, Marfa TX
  • Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts, Omaha, NE
  • The Drawing Center, New York, NY
  • Heart of Los Angeles (HOLA), Los Angeles, CA
  • Machine Project, Los Angeles, CA
  • Mary Miss / City as Living Laboratory, New York, NY
  • North Dakota Museum of Art, Grand Forks, ND
  • Space One Eleven, Birmingham, AL
  • STREB Brooklyn, NY

Posted on January 30th 2012 on 03:07pm
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Monday 23rd January 2012Art Based Will Return for the 43rd Time this June

 
The international Swiss art fair, Art Basel, will be making a return this June for it's 43rd edition. Art Basel is perhaps the biggest event in the art calendar, acting as a meeting place, and showcase, for some of the worlds best known galleries. 
 
Art Basel will be open from the 14th - 17th June this year, and is set to host over 2,500 works of art from 20th and 21st century artists, from across the world. The Art Statement section will also be there to showcase the work of young artists from around 27 galleries international galleries. 
 
It has been reported that the Art Basel Committee received over 1,000 applications, and a press release confirms that 73 of the original galleries will be showing this year, including 73 galleries from the United States, 55 from Germany, 29 from Switzerland, 28 from the UK and 15 from France, to mention just a few. 
 
New galleries appearing this year will include the Miguel Abreu Gallery from New York, the Chemould Prescott Road gallery from Mumbai, the Thomas Dane Gallery from London, the David Kordansky Gallery from Los Angeles and Galerie Susanne Zander from Cologne.
 
Further news and updates will be available as the year progresses, and a full list of Art Basel exhibitors can be found on the Art Basel website.

Posted on January 23rd 2012 on 03:09pm
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Monday 16th January 2012LACMA Now Showing Metropolis II by Artist Chris Burden

 
Artist, Chris Burden, has a new work on show at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA). Metropolis II is a huge kinetic sculpture that displays a colourful network of roads and buildings, with cars and trains zooming about the artificial cityscape. The sculpture is Burden's vision of what life in LA will be like in the next 5 or 10 years.
 
Chris Burden is an artist who is perhaps best known for his shocking performance works of the 1970's. First there was Shoot, from 1971, in which Burden was shot in the arm by a friend with a .22 caliber rifle at a distance of 15 feet. Then there was his 1974 work, Trans-fixed, in which he was nailed to the back of a Volkswagen bug, in a Christ-like crucifixion. 
 
His latest work is perhaps less controversial, but engaging nevertheless. Metropolis II is composed of over 1,000 miniature vehicles, 18 roads, a tiny commuter train line and a range of skyscrapers and other buildings, all on a micro scale. 
 
The cars and trains whizz around the sculpture, powered by electronic conveyor belts and magnets, as a representation of the chaotic frenzy of life in the modern city.  The noise that the sculpture makes, due to the continuous flow of traffic, is said to invoke a certain level of stress for the viewer, which is also linked to living in today's hectic and dynamic urban landscapes. 
 
At 10 feet tall, and around 30 feet wide, Metropolis II has taken four years to build, with Burden working away on it at his studio out in the Topanga Canyon artists colony, before it was transported to LA. The sculpture now stands in its own gallery, and opened to the public last Saturday. 

Posted on January 16th 2012 on 05:40pm
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Tuesday 10th January 2012Artists With A Website Are at an Advantage, Suggests New Report

A new report, put together by IBISWorld suggests that artists, and art dealers, with an online presence, are in a much stronger position to be more financially successful.
 
By having their own ecommerce website, artists are able to more easily take advantage of a growing trend in the consumer preferences to shop online.
 
Over the past 5 years, it has become far easier to shop and buy online, whether through ecommerce sites, or auction websites. The report from IBISWorld forecasts that the overarching ecommerce industry will continue to expand for at least the next 4 years. The report takes a close look at online art sales, and states that there has been a 3.4% increase in sales of artwork online since 2006. This too is thought to be on the right path to grow steadily over the next few years, as shopping online becomes more common place.
 
Furthermore, according to the IBISWorld report, the Online Art Sales industry was worth about $287.5 million in 2011 alone. This is an impressive figure, especially given the difficulties that bricks and mortar-based art businesses have been having in the past year or so. 
 
The consistent increase in online art sales will undoubtedly be good news for artists who have their own website, and with the trend set to continue in coming years, any artists, dealers, and galleries without a website, are well advised to build an art-based website now in order to take advantage of the swing in the market.
 
For anyone that wants all of the finer details of the report, copies are available to purcahse from IBISWorld, at a cost of $825.

Posted on January 10th 2012 on 02:10pm
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Monday 09th January 2012New iPhone App from Tate Modern: Can You Save Modern Art?

The Tate Modern have released a new application for the iPhone. The game, titled Race Against Time, is an innovative mix of platform style gameplay and the history of modern art. 
 
The main character in the game is a chameleon, who must travel through the history of modern art and defeat the evil Dr Greyscale, who is hell bent on removing all of the colour from the world. 
 
As you make your way from 1890, back to the present day, the backgrounds, scenery, and enemies change to reflect various decades and art movements. A bespoke soundtrack was also created for the game to really give you a feel for each of the periods represented. 
 
Early reviews of the app seem to say that it's fun, and full of little quirks that any modern art fans will love. Anything that makes art fun and playful, and can get new audiences involved is great in our opinion, so if you want to give the app a go, just search 'race against time' in the app store.

Posted on January 09th 2012 on 02:35pm
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Friday 06th January 2012Italy Looks to Protect its Museums from Earthquakes

 
It's frightening really, to consider just how much of the worlds art and cultural heritage is spread throughout some of the most famous museums and art galleries in Italy, and how that is constantly put at risk by the threat of earthquakes.
 
With that thought in mind, good news has been announced by the Italian Government. The commercial section of the ministry of culture, Arcus, is undertaking a €4 million project to study the seismic stability of 46 Italian museums so that plans can be put in place to better safeguard them from disaster. The study is scheduled to run through to 2014.
 
A main focus of the study is said to be examining how to better monitor structurally weak buildings and to carry out pre-emptive structural renovations to those that need it. 
 
Museums that feature on Arcus's include the likes of the Villa d'Este near Rome and the Museo di Capodimonte in Naples. If the current scheme is successful, then it is likely to be extended to cover all of the 306 state museums in Italy at a cost of nearer to €15 million. 
 

Posted on January 06th 2012 on 02:24pm
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Wednesday 04th January 2012Hello World! Video Comes to the Saatchi Screen

Christopher Baker, Hello World! Or: How I Learned to Stop Listening and Love the Noise, 2008. Multi-channel multimedia installation.
 
It has long been noted that video art has been a missing link in the Saatchi collection, but that has now changed in a big way. Saatchi has opened a new screening room specifically for video art, just 50 yards from the collections head quarters in London. 
 
Hello World! Or: How I Learned to Stop Listening and Love the Noise is the debut exhibition at the aptly named Saatchi Screen, and features the work of Christopher Baker. The show, which runs until the 28th Februrary, sees an accumulation of 5,000 videos, in one giant installation of video and sound, that loops through a range of material sourced from the internet. 
 
Baker, a former scientist, takes an interest in the way that people choose to express themselves, with particular focus on the medium that they use, and the forums in which they choose to do so. The internet has revolutionised the way that people communicate and connect with the world, and this is both celebrated and scrutinised in Bakers work. 
 
Hello World! seems to be an exciting way to get the Saatchi video collection well underway and to open the Saatchi Screen to an eager video art audience. 

Posted on January 04th 2012 on 02:44pm
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Labels: video art

Tuesday 03rd January 2012UK Introduces Droit de Suite Artist's Resale Tax

While many of us celebrated the arrival of 2012, art dealers and auction houses across the UK may have been dreading the arrival of the stroke of midnight, as the EU Droit de Suite Artist's Resale rights came into effect in Britain. 
 
At the beginning of 2011, the UK held a strong second place in the secondary market for modern and contemporary art, after the United States. Over the course of 2011, however, the UK has fallen into third place behind China. Now there is the worry that the UK market will suffer even more due to this new legislation. 
 
The Droit de Suite Artist's Resale tax ensures that artists, or heirs of artists who have died within the last 70 years, are entitled to a share in the resale of that artists work.  To auction houses and art dealers, this means that they will be required to pay up to 4% of any sale over £840 to the heirs or estate of an artist.  Furthermore, at auction, any lots that fall under the tax will require the successful bidder to pay and equal amount to the resale royalty (something that the auction houses have brought into effect as part of the tax). That means that top bidders could see fees up to the maximum of €12,500 added to their bill. 
 
The biggest worry for auction houses and dealers is that works of art will be taken to rivals in American, China or European Countries that have not implemented the Droit de Suite. 
 
While dealers and auction houses worry about the repercussions of the introduction of this tax, many in the art world are also celebrating the fact that the tax ensures that artists are able to retain a stake in their own work, just as copyright law ensures for authors or composers. 
 
While the big names of the art world like Hirst and Emin are sure to benefit from the tax, there is, however, the worry that younger and emerging artists will find the tax detrimental, as collectors may think twice before making a more risky purchase on which they have to pay an additional tax. The purchase becomes equally risky because, if they were to sell an emerging artist at auction, they would be liable for up to 4% commission to the artists. Meaning that both buying and selling the work would see them pay a premium. 
 
The tax will certainly see changes in how artists and artworks are dealt with in the UK, and only time will tell as to who will really benefit from the Artist's Resale Tax.
 

Posted on January 03rd 2012 on 12:10pm
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