Thursday, April 30, 2015

Art. . . Did You Know?

Today begins a column about art and artists, bringing to light information you might not know. To appear periodically, it is similar to my "Monday Muse Did You Know" posts about poets and poetry.

Did You Know. . . 

✦ New York City's Metropolitan Museum of Art has the right to charge an admissions fee, according to the State Supreme Court's decision of February 5, 2015.

✦ If you're planning a visit to an art museum, you might want to check the museum's visitor security and policies section first or, better, just leave your "selfie stick" at home. The camera/phone mounts are prohibited in Smithsonian museums and galleries (read the news release), Seattle Art Museum, Cleveland Museum of Art, Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, Houston Museum of Fine Arts, Dallas Museum of Art, Austin's Blanton Museum of Art, Chicago's Museum of Contemporary Art, and New York City's Metropolitan Museum of Art, among other art institutions in the United States. Just to be fair, note that on the other side of the backlash against selfies is Art in Island museum, Manila, The Philippines, whose official approach to interactivity encourages climbing on, touching, and playing with the art. (Read "There's an Entire Museum for #ArtSelfies in the Philippines" at The Creators Project.

✦ It's possible to be too popular! A new limit has been imposed on the number of visitors allowed into China's Forbidden City each day. The tourist cap is now approximately 80,000 a day. 

Watch the Smithsonian Channel's China's Forbidden City.

Richard Wilson Online is a new, and free, Website that offers commentary and other information about more than 1,000 works by the artist (c 1713 - 1782), including paintings, drawings, and prints. In addition, the site documents Wilson collections, themes and media, and exhibitions and includes biographies, bibliographical resources, and a glossary. It can be navigated in a number of ways and is searchable. The online catalogue raisonne, a model of its kind, is funded by Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art, London; its managing curator-compiler is Dr. Paul Spencer-Longhurst, senior research fellow at Mellon Centre. 

✦ The Smithsonian's National Portrait Gallery, Washington, D.C., has the largest public collection of portraits (text list) by Elaine de Kooning. The collection includes portraits of Ornette Coleman, Merce Cunningham, John F. Kennedy, and Harold Rosenberg. The museum's retrospective exhibition "Elaine de Kooning: Portraits" opened March 13 and continues through January 10, 2016. Check the museum's blog Face to Face for posts about the artist's life and work and its Tumblr site for posts with the hashtaag #MeetEdk.

NPG on FaceBook and Twitter

✦ Danish painter, poet, filmmaker, and sculptor Per Kirkeby (b. 1938), whose work I first saw in 2012 at The Phillips Collection in Washington, D.C., has stopped painting, because a brain hemorrhage and thrombosis suffered in 2009 prevents Kirkeby from seeing colors normally. Read "Kirkeby: 'I have given up trying to be a painter.'" in Politiken, January 30, 2015 (the original article in Danish).

Watch Louisiana Channel's fascinating interview with Kirkeby, "Per Kirkeby: We Build Upon Ruins" (it has English subtitles):

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