Art Industry News: David Zwirner Changes Tack on Plans for $50 Million Chelsea Gallery + Other Stories


Art Industry News is a daily digest of the most consequential developments coming out of the art world and art market. Here’s what you need to know on this Thursday, July 27.


Last Living Monuments Man Dies at 98 – Richard M. Barancik was the last living member of Monuments Men and Women of the Second World War, a group of some 350 people who worked on safeguarding and recovering Nazi looted art and works in danger during and after the war. He died in a hospital in Chicago on July 14. (The Art Newspaper)

Sales Down at Korean Auctions – The much hyped-up South Korean art market is not exempt from the global market correction as sales recorded at local South Korean auction houses Seoul Auction, K-auction, and Myart Auction have gone down by 47 percent in the first half of 2023, compared to the same period last year, according to a report by the Korea Art Authentication and Appraisal Research Center. The percentage of successful bids has also fallen to 70 percent compared to 80 percent during the same period last year. (Korea Herald)

David Zwirner Pivots on Chelsea Gallery – The mega art dealer decided not to proceed with his $50 million gallery building project, citing a developer’s “financial headwinds during Covid.” The original plan, announced in 2018, was to build a five-story tall building with 50,000-square-feet of space designed by Renzo Piano at 540 West 21st Street. Zwirner has now revived his ambitions in Chelsea and is using that same money on two separate projects: a three-floor, 36,000-square-foot office on 520 West 20th Street, which the gallery moved into in June; and a two-story, 18,000-square-foot gallery at 533 West 19th Street designed by Annabelle Selldorf. (New York Times)

Art Dealers Lobby E.U. to Reduce VAT on Art – Dealers across the European Union are seizing the opportunity to lobby their respective governments to reduce value-added tax rates for art following last year’s passing of a new E.U. directive that aims to establish a single E.U.-wide VAT system while also allowing member states to set their own rates on certain goods. Under this new directive, “supply of works of art, collectors’ items and antiques” are included among the items eligible for reduced VAT rates, and governments will have until the end of 2024 to align their laws with the new rules. (TAN)


New Director for RISD – Tsugumi Maki will lead the Rhode Island School of Design Museum, beginning her new role on October 10. Maki was most recently the chief collections and exhibitions officer at San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, prior to which she was the chief operating officer at the Institute of Contemporary Art/Boston. (Press release)

Seattle Art Museum Director Pivots to Cali – Amada Cruz is leaving her post as the director and CEO of the institution in October to take on a new position as director of the Santa Barbara Museum of Art. (Seattle Times)

Expo Chicago Names Curators for 2024 Fair – The next edition of the Chicago-based international art fair announced Amara Antilla and Rosario Güiraldes as curators for the special programs. Antilla will oversee “IN/SITU,” which features installations throughout the event and Güiraldes will helm “Exposure,” which highlights emerging artists. (Artforum)


TOILETPAPER’s Immersive Show Opens in India – Maurizio Cattelan and Pierpaolo Ferrari’s creative studio and image-based magazine is staging its biggest show in India at Mumbai’s Nita Mukesh Ambani Cultural Center. Titled “Run As Slow As You Can,” the show curated by Mafalda Millies and Roya Sachs immerses visitors in a vibrant setting where they are challenged by surrealist images. The exhibition runs through October 22. (Designboom)

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