Bonhams Addresses Charity Scrutiny, Paris’ Landmarks Become Olympic Venues, Roland Dumas Dies, and More: Morning Links for July 8, 2024 - The World News

Bonhams Addresses Charity Scrutiny, Paris’ Landmarks Become Olympic Venues, Roland Dumas Dies, and More: Morning Links for July 8, 2024

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YES OR NO? In The Guardian, Dalya Alberge wrote about Bonhams clarifying how it conducts its charity auctions, after complaints that it was taking a “buyer’s premium”—the charge added to the hammer price—from a good cause. At a sale in support of the Teenage Cancer Trust charity, that took place last month, art dealer John Bradley asked if the auction house included the buyer’s premium in “all [the] proceeds” mentioned in its catalogue. Bonhams’ sale coordinator replied “Buyer’s premium will be payable and 20% VAT.” On Friday, the auction house announced the opposite: “We will donate the buyer’s premium to the Teenage Cancer Trust”. Brandler said he was “thrilled” that the charity would receive all the money paid for the charity lots. He added: “Will other salesrooms follow suit and be more [transparent] in their descriptions?”

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SAY CHEESE! The photography festival Les Rencontres d’Arles is doing well, despite the hectic context of France’s parliamentary elections, reports Le Quotidien de l’art. It’s 55th edition, titled “Beneath the Surface”, consists of 30 exhibitions (10 certified by the artistic direction). The event is always presented as an opportunity to discover Arles’s heritage in a new light, as well as unusual spaces, such as the second floor of the city’s Monoprix (the French equivalent of Target), which currently features the seven finalists of Fondation Roederer’s Découverte prize. The Henri-Comte gallery, adjacent to the town hall, is home to still lifes by Ishiuchi Miyako (winner of Kering’s 2024 Women in Motion prize) depicting objects that belonged to her late mother. The Chapelle de la Charité houses a spectacular cabinet of curiosities by Michel Medinger. Sophie Calle took over a damp underground space, called Cryptoportiques, to showcase a series of decomposing photographs. The idea is to speed up the decomposition process and help them disappear “on a high note”. The festival runs through September 29.


Tanzanian portrait artist Shadrack Chaula was arrested for recording a viral video, showing him burning a photo of President Samia Suluhu Hassan while verbally insulting her. The 24-year-old painter has been sentenced to two years in prison or a fine of $2,000 (£1,600) after being found guilty of cybercrimes. Some social media users have started an online drive to raise money to pay Chaula’s fine so he can be freed from jail. [BBC]

In an interview with The Asia Pivot, Artnet Pro’s biweekly members-only newsletter about Asia’s art markets, Alice Lung, who overseeing the Perrotin gallery’s operations in Hong Kong, Shanghai, Tokyo, Seoul, and Los Angeles stated: “From what I observed at the recently concluded Hong Kong auction sales, the Chinese contemporary art market appears particularly weak. Buyers in mainland China are not as active right now. […] When the market was strong, each artwork generated more interest. That has declined, but overall business activity remains similar. […] Meanwhile, collectors are becoming more careful, discerning, and selective about their purchases.” [Artnet Pro]

Worried that they would not have enough space to keep collecting, the Los Angeles-based couple Candace and Charles Nelson found a two-fold solution to their problem. One, learn to appreciate smaller, more intimate works. Two, team up with interior designer Sara Story to complete their modernist Beverly Hills home. Their walls boast works by contemporary artists with ties to California, including Ed Ruscha, Jonas Wood, and Brenna Youngblood. [Cultured]

The Lourdes Bishop Jean-Marc Micas has put off any decision on whether to remove mosaics by Reverend Marko Rupnik, who is accused of abusing women. The shrine will remain intact until a satisfying solution can be found for the victims. The art work was created while some abuses were going on. The ex-Jesuit artist was expelled last year, and the Vatican has been looking into him since last October.[Abc]

French lawyer and politician Roland Dumas has died at age 101. He was France’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, the President of the Constitutional Council, but also accused of defrauding the Giacometti estate. Lastly, he was known for playing a central role in the handover of Guernica to Spain after Franco‘s death. [Le Quotidien de l’Art]


OLYMPIC SNEAK PEEK. The Olympics and Paralympics are right around the corner. One of the host city’s selling points was that it would primarily rely on existing or temporary structures for sporting competitions, such as the Grand Palais for fencing and taekwondo, the Stade Roland-Garros for tennis and boxing, and the Stade de France, the country’s national stadium, for athletics, rugby, and closing ceremonies. Only the Aquatics Center in the suburb of Saint-Denis has been built specifically for the Games. The new permanent sports facility has been co-designed by the Amsterdam-based firm VenhoevenCS and the French architects Ateliers 2/3/4. Here is a glimpse of it.  [AD]

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