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CAA News Today

News from the Art and Academic Worlds

posted by Christopher Howard — Jun 18, 2014

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.

The World’s Most Influential MFA Programs, Part 2

You may have noticed that our recent survey of ten of the world’s most influential MFA programs was heavily focused on the United States. That’s because we’re patriots. But numerous other art schools around the world have also made enormous impacts on the history of art, yielding generations of exalted alumni, boasting world-class faculty, and operating on a totally different scale and historical timeframe than schools of the US model. (Read more from Artspace Magazine.)

Foundations Add $13 Million to Grand Bargain Pot for DIA, Pensions

Two more leading national charitable foundations have pledged a combined $13 million to help the Detroit Institute of Arts reach its $100-million commitment to the grand bargain, which would protect the city-owned museum from having to sell its treasures while easing cuts to city pensioners in Detroit’s bankruptcy. (Read more from the Detroit Free Press.)

Detroit, DIA, in Preparation for Court Battle, Hire Art Advising Firm

As legal jockeying continues in Detroit’s bankruptcy, the city and the Detroit Institute of Arts have jointly hired a New York art investment firm whose personnel could be called as expert witnesses to push back against creditors trying to force a sale of art in court. Artvest Partners, a company that advises attorneys, dealers, insurers, and collectors, has been engaged to provide a price range for the entire 66,000-piece collection at the city-owned museum and assess the viability and practicality of selling art or otherwise monetizing the collection. (Read more from the Detroit Free Press.)

Shopkeepers of the World Unite

One evening last summer, far from New York City, I was cornered by a senior curator from a prestigious arts institution. The woman, who was urbane, stylish, and in her late thirties, had a pressing question. “You live in Los Angeles,” she noted. “Can you tell me, is Petra Cortright a feminist?” I squirmed as I considered how to avoid falling into this trap. (Read more from Artforum.)

Applying Rules of All Markets to Art

There’s a sentiment afloat in this frothy art market that rampant flipping and other practices among the creators, buyers, and sellers of art that were perhaps previously considered questionable are in fact entirely ethically neutral. This fairly widespread sentiment, that ethics don’t come into this matter, relies heavily on the assertion that such practices are entirely in line with the well-established rules of any market, and that art is no different from any other commodity and never has been. (Read more from Edward Winkleman.)

A Dereliction of Duty

In London, on June 17, Christie’s, the international auction house, will be offering for sale a painting by the English Pre-Raphaelite artist William Holman Hunt. Entitled Isabella and the Pot of Basil, it carries a presale estimate of $8.4 million to $13.4 million. Such sales—and such prices—are commonplace in today’s overheated art market. This one, however, is different because the seller, the Delaware Art Museum, is an institution that holds one of the finest collections of Pre-Raphaelite art outside Britain. Why would it choose to part with a work of such quality? (Read more from the Wall Street Journal.)

A Study Shows How Audiences Are Changing, but Should Data Guide Artistic Decisions?

No facet of society—not even the arts—is immune to the conversation about metrics, measurement, and big data. Last week in downtown Los Angeles, museum administrators, marketers, and cultural leaders gathered at the Walt Disney Concert Hall for the presentation of “Culture Track 14,” hosted by the Music Center. Billed as revealing a “dramatically changed cultural landscape,” the 2014 study—and the conversations around it—drove home many particulars that audience members already assumed and other dynamics long at play. (Read more from the LA Weekly.)

Starbucks College Achievement Plan

Starbucks believes in the promise and pursuit of the American Dream. This fall, the company will make it possible for thousands of part- and full-time US partners to complete a college degree. In a first of its kind collaboration with Arizona State University, Starbucks will offer partners the opportunity to finish their bachelor’s degree with full tuition reimbursement. Partners may choose from forty undergraduate degree programs through Arizona State’s research driven and top-ranked program, delivered online. (Read more from Starbucks.)


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