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THE ENCYCLOPEDIC MUSEUM. At the end of the week, the Boijmans Van Beuningen in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, will open its hotly anticipated Depot warehouse space, the Guardian reports. It has a remarkable premise: Visitors will be able to see every single one of the 151,000 items in its collection. Designed by MVRDV, it resembles a mirrored bowl, has a rooftop green space, and features five different climates inside to preserve various types of artworks. Designboom has photos of the structure. The director of the Boijmans, Sjarel Ex, told the AFP it is “the only fully accessible depot, public depot that is open in the world.” (This is especially important right now since the main Boijmans building is being renovated until 2028.) This being the Netherlands, precautions have been taken to shield the building from flooding. Speaking with the Guardian, MVRDV founding partner Winy Maas termed the Depot a “Noah’s ark.”
EMERGENCY ARCHAEOLOGY. After all of that pessimistic climate commentary yesterday, here is some good news on the topic. (Sort of.) “It’s a grim inside joke among glacial archaeologists that their field of study has been one of the few beneficiaries of climate change,” Franz Lidz write in an overview of their work for the New York Times. Melting is widespread, and as one archaeologist put it, “We are speeding back in time.” Discoveries are being made at a rapid rate, but, well, the news is honestly pretty bleak here, too. Researchers are scrambling to preserve artifacts before they deteriorate, and one likened the situation to a library on fire. “Now is the time to rescue what books can be saved for the edification of the future,” archaeologist Craig Lee said.
Consuelo Císcar, who led the Valencia Institute of Modern Art in Spain for a decade, until 2014, is going on trial for allegedly spending €4 million (about $4.63 million) to purchase and promote pieces attributed to artist Gerardo Rueda that she knew were forgeries. Císcar has maintained that she is innocent. [The Times of London]
A 32-year-old artist named Ben Raymond is standing trial in the United Kingdom on charges that he was a member of a banned neo-Nazi group that stockpiled weapons like firearms and swords. He has denied the claims. [The Guardian]
Rapper Tupac Shakur will be the subject of an immersive museum experience in Los Angeles in January titled “Tupac Shakur. Wake Me When I’m Free.” The project is being developed by Kinfolk Management + Media in collaboration with Shakur’s estate. [Associated Press]
Squid Game’s production designer, Chae Kyoung-sun, discussed the many art references that permeate the nightmarish television tale, from M.C. Escher to Judy Chicago. “All I hoped sincerely was that the spaces, structures in the game, and colors would reflect all of us who must survive endless competition,” Chae said. [Architectural Digest]
Musicians Alicia Keys and Kasseem Dean (aka Swizz Beatz) have installed works by Kwame Brathwaite, Toyin Ojih Odutola, Derrick Adams, and many more artists in a Wallace E. Cunningham–designed home in La Jolla, California, that they purchased in 2019. [Architectural Digest]
Flashback: Keys and Dean discussed their art collection, which focuses on African-American artists and includes the largest private holding of photographs by Gordon Parks, with Antwaun Sargent in ARTnews in 2019. [ARTnews]
THE GRAND TOUR. Travel kingpin Rick Steves is restarting his tours of Europe in February, after an almost two-year Covid interruption, and spoke to the New York Times about his many ventures. For one thing, he is compiling the “most beautiful art experiences” from his TV show into “a six-hour series of European art and architecture,” he said. “We’ve been working on the show for the last year, and it’s going to be my opus magnum, my big project.” [NYT]