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Ai Weiwei Pens Memoir—and More Art News –

Ai Weiwei Pens Memoir—and More Art News –


Ai Weiwei Pens Memoir—and More Art News –

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The Headlines
AI WEIWEI: ARTIST, ACTIVIST, ARCHITECT, TEACHER, AND NOW MEMOIRIST. A new book by the famed figure, focused on his life, will be released in November—it will be translated into 13 languages, according to the Bookseller. On Instagram, Ai said that he decided to write the volume in 2011, while being detained by Chinese authorities. Titled 1000 Years of Joys and Sorrows, the book will delve into his relationship with his father, the noted poet Ai Qing , who was persecuted during the Cultural Revolution. “I resolved that if I was released I would write down what I knew of my father and tell my son honestly who I am, what life is like, why freedom is so precious, and why autocracy fears art,” Ai said in a statement. A book of Ai Qing’s poetry is also coming out in November with a cover by Ai Weiwei’s son, Ai Lao.

WHILE BEING CLOSED DURING THE PANDEMIC, museums have been experiencing problems from unwanted, non-human intruders, Deborah Vankin reports in the Los Angeles Times. Webbing clothes moths made their way into the Getty Museum in Brentwood, California, for instance. Before they became an actual infestation, the institution undertook Project Moth Remediation, which involved 6,000 hours of work. The Getty’s senior conservator for decorative arts, Jane Bassett, told the Times that the organization has “zero tolerance” for such pests.

The Digest
Though Frieze Los Angeles has canceled its 2022 edition, the upstart Felix art fair will stage its third outing at the Hollywood Roosevelt at the end of July. [Artnet News]
Here’s the inside story of how a painting set to hit the auction block with an estimate of about $1,800 in Spain came to be identified as a possible Caravaggio, potentially worth millions. [The Guardian]
Barbara Steiner has been hired as the director and CEO of Germany’s Bauhaus Dessau Foundation, which pursues research on experimental design. Steiner is currently the director of the Kunsthaus Graz in Austria. [ArtDaily]
The Denver Art Museum will unveil its new welcome center, and its freshly renovated North Building, in October. The project’s price tag was $150 million. [CBS Denver]
A prototype for the first U.S. dollar coin, from 1794, is set to be sold at Heritage Auctions. The “No Stars Flowing Hair Dollar,” as it’s known to numismatists, carries an estimate of $350,000 to $500,000. [Associated Press]
DJ Steve Aoki, who is releasing his second NFT next week, has offered this vision of the future: “Everyone’s going to own a digital wallet, and everyone’s going to flex and show what they think is valuable to them in their wallet.” Sounds great. [CNBC]
The Kicker
CURATOR KLAUS BIESENBACH HAS A HISTORY OF UNORTHODOX living situations. He has resided in a spartan, all-white place in New York, and he told reporter Jori Finkel, for a new W article, that during high school in Germany he called a greenhouse home. Now Biesenbach, the director of the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles, has settled in a cavernous onetime sewing factory in Downtown L.A. His pet goose, Cupcake, lives there, too. While many New Yorkers dream of an expansive L.A. home with a pool—a “house as convertible,” as Biesenbach put it, he had a different vision. “I thought it would be wonderful to have a house that’s more like a truck, more utilitarian, more a tool than a lifestyle.” [W]
Thank you for reading. We’ll see you on Monday.

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