Headlines: Political Correctness, Tax Evasion and Women
1) Rijksmuseum Aims for a Neutral Perspective
The Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam is campaigning for a more progressive image with the removal of racist and otherwise offensive terms from the titles and descriptions of artworks in its online library. The project is being called the “Adjustment of Colonial Terminology” and the museum hopes that removal of unnecessary “colonial” terms in its library will update the collection to a more neutral and modern perspective. Opposition groups believe that removing terms from the titles of artworks is being overly politically correct, and akin to censorship. However, as Hyperallergic points out, in many cases the artists themselves were not responsible for the titles of their works, and the non-PC terms therefore only reflect the attitudes of past museum administrators and art dealers.
2) Emotional Turmoil Doesn't Mean Great Art
If you’re still picturing the successful artist as a troubled, melancholy soul, perhaps this article will change your perspective. A recent statistical study by an economics professor at Brandeis University in Massachusetts found that the suffering of the artist doesn’t necessarily make for great art. By looking at sales and acquisitions records for 12,000 artworks made in the early 1900’s, Kathryn Graddy found that, in fact, the opposite may be true. Works that were produced within a year or two of a significant personal upheaval on the part of the artist were shown to have done notably worse at auction. Sales aside, art can still be a powerful tool for working through an emotional time.
3) Wildenstein Trial to Open the Lid on Shady Art World Economy
An upcoming trial surrounding the Wildensteins, a wealthy family of art collectors located in France, may help to lift a historic shroud surrounding the mysterious monetary dealings of the luxury fine art world. The trial itself will focus on possible tax evasion efforts by several members of the family, and the shipment of several hundred million dollars of fine art to Switzerland following the family patriarch’s death. However, new information may arise that gives a telling glimpse into the crooked, corrupt and unknown dealings of the high-end art economy.
4) Pussy Riot Frontwoman Proposes All-Female Museum
Maria Alyokhina (above), frontwoman of the all-female punk band and feminist darlings Pussy Riot, has proposed a new museum to be opened in Montenegro. The New Balkan Women’s Museum would employ only female curators and museum administrators, and be entirely devoted to promoting and supporting the work of female artists. With women artists currently making up roughly 30 percent of museum representation in major New York and Los Angeles galleries, the proposed Montenegro institution seems like a timely project.