CAA News Today

News from the Art and Academic Worlds

posted by Christopher Howard — Feb 20, 2013

Each week CAA News publishes summaries of eight articles, published around the web, that CAA members may find interesting and useful in their professional and creative lives.

Move Over Galleries: Artists Sign with Agents

The British artist Stuart Semple has signed a contract for worldwide representation with the fashion agency Next Management, a move that highlights again how the traditional artist–gallery relationship is changing. Several artists, including Damien Hirst and Keith Tyson, have agents or managers who provide financial advice and handle their business dealings with galleries, but Semple says his collaboration will more closely resemble relationships in the music industry, where managers act as a buffer between their acts and the outside world, helping to promote their work and negotiate their projects. (Read more in the Art Newspaper.)

Help Desk: Art Consultant

I was just approached by an art consultant who asked me “how I normally work with art consultants.” I think what the person wanted to know is how I want to divide sales, like a percentage ratio, and I just don’t know what is normal. I tried to find online standards for art consultant–artist relationships that develop without a gallery being involved, but everything was all over the place and contradictory. (Read more at Daily Serving.)

The Humanities, Unraveled

Let me start with the bad news. It is not even news anymore; it is simply bad. Graduate education in the humanities is in crisis. Every aspect, from the most specific details of the curriculum to the broadest questions about its purpose, is in crisis. It is a seamless garment of crisis: if you pull on any one thread, the entire thing unravels. Read more in the Chronicle of Higher Education.)

Four Common Misconceptions on Creative Thinking in Research

Research is a creative activity. In essence, to solve your research question, you will need to take a step outside the boundaries of current knowledge. If you are expected to develop a new theory as part of your research, you certainly need to get your creative juices flowing. When we read the work of great scientists, it sometimes seems as if they possess of some extraordinary tweak in their brain that makes them capable of taking a visionary leap and pushing their field to new advances. In reality, however, all creative solutions are simply the result of a long process of trying, researching, and chewing at the end of pencils. Read more at Inside Higher Ed.)

Fire at Pratt Institute Destroys Studios and Artwork of Students

Maria De Los Angeles, a twenty-four-year-old student at Pratt Institute, has an admissions interview at Yale University’s graduate art school next month and was planning to show the officers there some of her one hundred paintings and three hundred prints. But in last Friday’s early hours, a fast-moving fire ravaged the top two floors of the historic main building at the private art, design, and architecture college in Brooklyn, destroying dozens of art studios and the precious works they contained. (Read more in the New York Times.)

Will You Lose Your Museum Job to a Robot?

OK, maybe not to a robot, but to increasingly sophisticated automation. This question is prompted by a report released last month by the Associated Press forecasting the effect of technology on the economy and employment. The thesis of the authors is that the world is experiencing the first real “jobless recovery” in history, as we bounce back from the great recession of 2008. They argue that the millions of jobs that went away in the past few years not only are not coming back, even more jobs will be lost as automation takes over more work. (Read more at the Center for the Future of Museums.)

A Critic’s Take on Arts and Entrepreneurship

“Arts entrepreneurship” certainly isn’t an oxymoron, unless your definition of art is so narrow that any business success disqualifies it—the attitude of the stereotypical rock snob for whom the little-heard indie debut is always better than the major-label follow-up. On the other hand, the conflict between art and commerce is age old, and there’s no question pandering to an audience can undermine artistic quality. But there’s no magic formula for striking the balance. (Read more in Audience Wanted.)

Sotheby’s Sued over Caravaggio Attribution

Sotheby’s is being sued for damages over a work it attributed to a “follower” of Caravaggio that sold at auction in London to the late collector and scholar Denis Mahon in 2006, for a hammer price of £42,000. Mahon subsequently identified the painting as a work “by the hand of Caravaggio” and obtained an export license for it that gave an estimated selling price of £10 million, according to a claim filed at London’s High Court of Justice. (Read more in the Art Newspaper.)

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