- Big news: The 20thC collection of Harry and Mary Margaret Anderson — they’re better known as Hunk and Moo — is not the largest art collection in private hands but it is unquestionably among the best. According to a press release, the “core” of it is going to Stanford University — and not to SFMOMA. Stanford’s art museum, the Cantor Center for Visual Arts, will build a new wing for the gift. The new wing will open in late 2014. (The university did not announce the architect.) The press release with news of the couple’s gift was first shared with the San Francisco Chronicle. Neither the family nor the university released a complete checklist, but the donated works include Jackson Pollock’s Lucifer (1947), Richard Diebenkorn’s Ocean Park #60 (1973) and Mark Rothko’s Pink and White over Red (1957, at right). Notable aside: One of the reasons museum directors often give for hosting fluff/vanity shows is that it’s a way to court prospective donors, to encourage them to give their collections to Museum X. SFMOMA presented an exhibition of the Andersons’ collection in 2000. In the years mostly before but also since, the Andersons donated at least 28 artworks to SFMOMA. But the big gift went to Stanford. (The couple has given a major collection of graphic arts to the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco too.)
- What curators of pre-20thC art should be learning from directors who stage Shakespeare.
- On the occasion of this publication, Jannon Smith has taken to the Getty’s Iris blog with a bunch of old Hans Richter films. You will not believe they’re from the 1920s.
- I’d guess that Milwaukee Art Museum director Dan Keegan thinks the DeCordova Sculpture Park and Museum is arrogant for doing this.
- Ed Winkleman on my most-recent Modern Painters column. I’m not sure I think that art museums showing art that’s socioculturally or sociopolitcally relevant now would lead to a better world, but I think it would present a different — even better — context toward exhibiting art in the spirit and context in which (much of) it was made. Art museums often strip social context and content out of art, presenting it within a formalist history rather than a social history.
- When a gesamtkunstwerk aesthetically crosses over: Suddenly Andrea Zittel’s AZ West sounds a little like… a Dwell shoot?
- Rene Magritte is coming to the Tate Liverpool this summer. The behind-the-scenes pictures here at the Tate’s blog will make you chuckle.
Art-focused Journalism by Tyler Green