Headlines: Narcissism, Trump's Tombstone and Zaha Hadid

1) Narcissistic Artists Perform Better at Auction, Study Suggests

An internet meme commenting on the narcissism of artists


A new study from Florida State University has suggested that artists who display the strongest narcissistic traits tend to be more commercially successful, reports Hyperallergic. The study measured the artist’s levels of narcissism by comparing the sizes of the signatures of the artists. Looking at 815 artworks from the Oxford Art Online database, the research team, led by Yi Zhou, concluded that the larger and more sprawling an artist’s signature, the better he or she tended to perform at auction, in appraisals, and in comparison to the art market index in general. According to the researchers, narcissistic artists tend to make larger works overall, and date their works more often.


2) Anonymous Artist Erects Tombstone for Trump


An Instagram photo of Trump's tombstone


Over the weekend, an anonymous artist erected a tombstone for Donald Trump in New York’s Central Park. The tombstone was quickly removed by park authorities but not before being photographed and posted to countless social media accounts. Clearly made by a more left-leaning artist, the stone included a short epitaph which read “made America hate again,” a clever, if frightening play on the Republican candidate’s current campaign slogan, “make America great again.” The maker of the stone also left a blank space for the date of Trump’s death. At this time, no one seems to know where the stone ended up.


3) Detroit Citizens and Officials Still Angry at Ryan Mendoza

A photo of Ryan Mendoza's The White HouseRyan Mendoza, The White House

Berlin-based artist Ryan Mendoza continues to draw disdain from the citizens of Detroit, centering round his art project “The White House.” Mendoza’s art project saw the artist tearing down an abandoned house in Detroit and shipping the entire structure to Germany, where it was put on display as part of Art Rotterdam. While the artwork originally angered people with its allusion to the United States as a ramshackle, run-down structure, the artist’s failure to clean up and remove the skeletal remains of the building from its original lot is causing a new uproar. After hiring a city crew to finally demolish the remains on Tuesday, the Detroit Land Bank Authority is calling for Mendoza to foot the bill.


4) Elizabeth Murdoch Introduces £100,000 Prize for Female Artists


A photo of the artist Phyllidia Barrow



Tate trustee Elizabeth Murdoch has introduced a new monetary prize specifically for female artists. The £100,000 annual Freelands Artist Award will go to a mid-career woman artist based in the U.K. The winner will also get a solo show at an as-yet-unnamed U.K. institution. Encouragingly, the selection panel also features a number of prominent female arts professionals. The award comes  after a commissioned report by curator Charlotte Bonham Carter, showing that female artists are still notably underrepresented in regional galleries, a discrepancy which gets even larger when one looks at the most well-known and prestigious art museums.


5) Architect Zaha Hadid Dies at Age 65


A photograph of the late architect Zaha Hadid


Famed British architect Zaha Hadid died of a heart attack Thursday morning at the age of 65. The attack occurred while Hadid was recuperating from bronchitis at a hospital in Miami. The Iraq-born architect was well-known for her bold designs, which included the London Olympic Aquatic Centre and the Guangzhou Opera House in China. Earlier this year, Hadid became the first woman to be awarded the Royal Institute of British Architects’ royal gold medal. Today, fans and fellow architects the world over are remembering Hadid as an innovator in her field.


Written by: Dallas Jeffs
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