Sotheby’s launches a new prize for cutting-edge curators

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SMALL museums that struggle to find the funding their curators need to research and develop innovative, ideas-based exhibitions are to get a boost from Sotheby’s, a commercial auction house, which on September 28th announced the inaugural winners of its $250,000 annual Sotheby’s Prize.

The 2018 Sotheby’s Prize will be shared by the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago (MCA) and the Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University, two American institutions that are planning shows of under-represented areas of art history. “Many Tongues: Art, Language and Revolution in the Middle East and South Asia” curated by Omer Kholeif , a Cairo-born scholar who is now at the MCA, will open in October 2019. “Pop América: 1965-1975” will open in October 2018 at the McNay Art Museum in San Antonio, Texas, before moving to the Nasher Museum and then on to the Block Museum at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois almost a year later. Curated by Esther Gabara of the Nasher Museum, who has written extensively about modernist photography…Continue reading

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Personal pronouns are changing fast

NOT so long ago a man could be jailed in Texas for sex with another man. In 2015 a county clerk in Kentucky was jailed for refusing to certify the marriage of two men. Gay rights in America proceeded at an extraordinary rate between Lawrence v Texas (2003), in which …

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Giorgio Vasari, the man who created art history

Vasari made craftsmen into stars The Collector of Lives: Giorgio Vasari and the Invention of Art. By Ingrid Rowland and Noah Charney. Norton; 432 pages; $29.95 and £23.99. TOWARDS the end of his life Michelangelo Buonarroti, the most famous artist of the Italian Renaissance, began burning his drawings. He did …

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Esther Kinsky muses on a river in England

Esther Kinsky goes with history’s flow River. By Esther Kinsky. Translated by Iain Galbraith. Fitzcarraldo; 368 pages; £12.99. To be published in America this autumn by Transit Books. IN HER post-war childhood beside the Rhine, the narrator of Esther Kinsky’s third novel learns that “every river is a border.” Flowing …