Trailblazing Artist Judith Lauand Dies at 100—and More Art News –

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The Headlines

JUDITH LAUAND, the Brazilian painter of alluring, inventive, and precise geometric abstractions, has died at 100ArtReview reports. A figurative artist at the start of her career, Lauand came to abstraction in the 1950s, after meeting members of the nation’s Concretism movement while working as a guard at the 1954 Bienal de São Paulo. She had admired their work in an earlier exhibition, they invited her into the fold, and she became the lone female member of the pivotal Grupo Ruptura , which promoted Brazilian Concrete art throughout the decade. Lauand is currently the subject of a retrospective at the Museu de Arte de São Paulo (MASP), where she also had a 2011 survey.

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Smiling old man who is seated.

A NEW DAY. Good news for Art Basel Hong Kong, and all who celebrate: Hong Kong said today that it is dropping its coronavirus restrictions for incoming travelers who test negative (and loosening other rules), the Washington Post reports. The changes go into effect Wednesday. Under the so-called “0+3” system, in-bound travels have been barred from some types of venues, including bars and museums, until they tested negative after three days. Basel’s Hong Kong fair is scheduled to open its VIP preview on March 21 with some 171 exhibitors, a 32-percent jump from this year’s figure, ARTnews reported. That edition, and 2021’s, occurred amid strict quarantine rules that led some foreign dealers to stay home and operate so-called “ghost booths,” staffed by locals.

The Digest

Singer Margareth Menezes has been tapped to be culture minister of Brazil by incoming president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, who vowed during his campaign to restore the nation’s culture ministry, which was axed by its current president, Jair Bolsonaro[The Art Newspaper]

Artist Daniel Brush, a creator of jaw-droppingly intricate sculptures and jewelry, has died at the age of 75. Brush never employed a dealer, but his works were collected by admiring patrons who bought them “from warm hand to warm hand,” he once said. [The Washington Post]

Is the painting Rembrandt in a Red Beret, which depicts the Dutch master in fine attire, an actual Rembrandt? Opinions vary! But this much appears to be certain about the canvas, which is now owned by a private collector: It has had an almost unbelievably wild ride though history. [The New York Times]

Elisabeth Sherman, who has been at the Whitney Museum since 2010, has joined the International Center of Photography as senior curator and director of exhibitions and collections. At the Whitney, she organized shows by Zoe LeonardBunny Rogers, and others, and co-curated the recent Dawoud Bey retrospective. [Press Release/ICP]

After 14 months of negotiations, unionized workers at MASS MoCA approved their first contract. “We’re proud of having secured a strong agreement that we can build on,” the union said in a statement. This summer, employees staged in a one-day strike during the bargaining process. [WAMC and The Berkshire Eagle]

A rare (edition of one) Grand Seiko watch with a titanium case sold for $478,800—a record for the brand—at auction at Phillips in New York, a result that “suggests high-end collectors are willing to pay up for timepieces even if they aren’t Swiss made,” Andy Hoffman writes. [Bloomberg]

The Kicker

RIP. Writer Jamie Brisick has a tender and moving profile in the New York Times of artist Ashley Bickerton, who died last month in Bali, Indonesia, where he had moved almost three decades ago from New York. When Brisick visited Bickerton there, the artist read a manifesto that he wrote some years ago, which goes in part: “Choose your material carefully. Avoid too many art fairs. And travel, limit your footprint and disappear.” On that last point, of course, Bickerton was not exactly unsuccessful. His wily, raucous, and elegant art about consumerism, environmental degradation, and so much more has been looking increasingly prescient—and winning new admirers—in recent years. [NYT]

Angelia S. Rico

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