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WITH MUSEUMS SHUTTERED DURING COVID LOCKDOWNS, Robert Smithson’s Spiral Jetty (1970) in Utah’s Great Salt Lake became a hot ticket. One day in March of 2020, some 700 vehicles visited the remote site, the Art Newspaper reports. “There was a big increase in visitors during the pandemic, but the uptick has continued,” Kelly Kivland, a former Dia Art Foundation curator, said. (Dia helps care for the storied earthwork; Kivland was just named chief curator of the Wexner Center in Columbus, Ohio.) It sounds like people are behaving themselves while visiting, but Box Elder County has snapped up 10 acres nearby to add parking and toilets—a thoughtful move.
RESEARCHERS HAVE IDENTIFIED WHAT THEY BELIEVE IS the earliest evidence of humans engaging in “regular, small-scale conflicts,” Science News reports. Skeletons from a cemetery known as Jebel Sahaba in Sudan, which date back 13,400 and 18,600 years, exhibit signs of combat injuries, both healed and not, according to a new paper in Scientific Reports. These injuries were likely caused by “stone spears, arrow points, or close combat” (which sounds unpleasant). The violence may have been the result of a scarcity of resources caused by environmental changes.
David Adjaye, the architect behind the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C., and the forthcoming home for the Studio Museum in Harlem, received the Royal Gold Medal from the Royal Institute of British Architects in a virtual ceremony. Among the speakers were U2 frontman Bono and President Barack Obama, who called the NMAAHC “genius, pure and simple.” [Dezeen]
After four years as director of the Israel Museum, Ido Bruno is stepping down. The next director has not yet been selected. [The Times of Israel]
The five controversial NFTs that the Andy Warhol Foundation minted for digital works that the artist made on an Amiga 1000 computer around 1985 sold for about $3.38 million at Christie’s. [Press Release/Art Daily]
The artist Arturo Luz, who created one of the first commercial galleries in the Philippines, in 1960 in Manila, and who the founding director of the Metropolitan Museum of Manila, has died. [ArtAsiaPacific]
With shows now running at Gladstone on Manhattan’s Upper East Side and the Louisiana Museum of Art in Humlebaek, Denmark, Arthur Jafa got the profile treatment. Until recently, “I was a failure, by and large, in my own mind,” he said. [The New York Times]
The sculptor Uri Aran, who showed with the now-closed Gavin Brown’s Enterprise in New York (like Jafa), has joined Andrew Kreps Gallery. [Press Release/Art Daily]
“Did paying a ransom for a stolen Magritte painting inadvertently fund terrorism?” Buckle your seatbelt before diving into this stemwinder. [Vanity Fair]
FOR DECADES, THE WHEREABOUTS OF A HOUSE that graced the garden of the Museum of Modern Art in New York in 1950 were unknown to the institution. Now the airy, modernist structure, which was designed by architect Gregory Ain, has been found in Croton-on-Hudson, New York, thanks to the research work of historian George Smart, the New York Times reports. “I knew that it was a famous house,” its owner since 1979, Mary Kelly, said. “This house was not lost. It’s been here all this time.” The Times paid a visit, and it’s now filled with art, and largely unchanged since its MoMA star turn. It looks great. [The New York Times]
Thank you for reading. We’ll see you on Monday.