Barbara Kruger Talks Copyright, Alibaba Offers NFTs, and More: Morning Links for August 17, 2021

Barbara Kruger Talks Copyright, Alibaba Offers NFTs, and More: Morning Links for August 17, 2021

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The Headlines

TODAY BRINGS A BOATLOAD OF FRESH ARTIST INTERVIEWS. Asked if she has ever taken copycats to court, Barbara Kruger told the Art Newspaper: “I don’t sue people. I will let all these corporations who are old-school robber barons do that. I think copyrights are euphemisms for corporate control on a certain level.” Kruger will open a show at the Art Institute of Chicago next month. The New Yorker stopped by the Guggenheim as Ragnar Kjartansson was prepping his  Romantic Songs of the Patriarchy, which involves 24 women and nonbinary musicians playing songs over and over, by everyone from The Police to Lil Wayne. “Every frickin’ song has patriarchal overtones in it,” he said. “The more you think about it, it’s in, like, everything you hear.” And in Art in AmericaJenny Saville spoke with writer Roxane Gay about fatness, feminism, and gender inequity in the art industry. “If I do a show in a museum, you can pretty much guarantee that all the people around the table will be women,” Saville said. “But still, at the head of the table, the director is almost always a man.”

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HEADING TO A NEW YORK MUSEUM? BRING YOUR VACCINE PASS. Starting September 13, evidence of Covid-19 jabs will be required to access museums in the city, ARTnews reports. At a press conference on Monday, New York City’s mayor, Mayor Bill de Blasio, said, “It’s time for people to see vaccination as literally necessary to living a good, full and healthy life.” The announcement follows city regulations requiring vax proof to visit public spaces like gyms and restaurants. Some countries, like France and Italy, have also put in place vax rules for museum visitors.

The Digest

The market for high-end rare cars is scorching: Auctions during Monterey Car Week in California brought in a whopping $343 million, a 37 percent jump over the sales during 2019. (The 2020 edition was scuttled—you know why.) [Bloomberg]

The latest batch of National Endowment for the Humanities grants, totaling $28.4 million, includes funds for a reworking of the Brooklyn Museum’s American art galleries, a Hans Holbein the Younger show at the Morgan Library & Museum in New York, and a digital catalogue of Georgia O’Keeffe’s works, which is being put together by the O’Keeffe Museum in Santa Fe. [The New York Times]

Tod Williams Billie Tsien Architects, the designers of the Obama Presidential Center in Chicago and the since-demolished American Folk Art Museum in New York, have been hired to create a 20,000-square-foot addition to the Harn Museum of Art at the University of Florida in Gainesville. [The Gainesville Sun]

The Chinese e-commerce platform Alibaba, founded by ARTnews Top 200 Collector Jack Ma, is offering NFTs for various digital assets as part of its online auctions. The Sichuan government is in charge of the blockchain. [South China Morning Post]

Speaking of NFTs, an $18 million home on the market in Los Angeles has what is being billed as an NFT art gallery, outfitted with displays for showing digital art. “It brings the house character and charisma,” realtor James Harris said of the space. “It brings it to life.” [Robb Report]

It is tough out there for world-famous street artists. Banksy’s recent “Spraycation” works in England went up not so long ago, but some have already been removed or defaced. Here is a rundown of their status. [Ocula]

The Kicker

LOVE IS ALL AROUND. The free-thinking artists Annie Sprinkle and Beth Stephens “have married the sky, moon, snow and sun, among other natural entities” in their performances, as CNN writes in a profile of the two, and they have popped up at major art shows around the world over the past two decades. Now the self-proclaimed “ecosexuals” have a new book out—Assuming the Ecosexual Position: The Earth as Lover.  It provides an overview of their fruitful collaboration and their philosophy. “We shamelessly hug trees, massage the Earth with our feet, and talk erotically to plants,” they have written. “We make love to the Earth through our senses.” [CNN]

Thank you for reading. We’ll see you tomorrow.

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