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15th-century Netherlandish masterpiece will stay in the UK

Plus: Uffizi’s Vasari Corridor could be cleared of paintings | New fellowship created to explore intersection of art and philosophy | Shanghai Project exhibition postponed | and Luc Hoffman (1923-2016)

26 July 2016

Our daily round-up of news from the art world

Bowes Museum secures funding to save Dieric Bouts painting for the nation | The Bowes Museum in Castle Barnard, County Durham, has announced that it has secured the funding to acquire 15th-century Netherlandish painter Dieric Bouts the Elder’s St Luke Drawing the Virgin and Child. The painting, which was subjected to a temporary export bar in November 2015, has been saved for the nation with £2,290,650 provided by the Heritage Lottery Fund, the Art Fund and a number of private donors. The acquisition will initiate a partnership between the Bowes, the York Art Gallery and Bristol Museum & Art Gallery, which which will see the painting tour to York and Bristol in coming years.

Uffizi’s Vasari Corridor could be cleared of paintings | The self-portraits hanging in the Uffizi section of the Vasari Corridor may soon be removed, says the Corriera della Sera (Italian language article). Though Uffizi director Eike Schmidt concedes the move may not be a popular one, he has stressed that prior to 1973, the portrait collection hung elsewhere in the museum. The corridor itself has been open to the general public for organised visits since 1996, but was closed in mid-July due to inadequate provisions for visitor safety and access, and concern that variable climate conditions were putting artworks at risk.

New fellowship created to explore intersection of art and philosophy | A major new fellowship programme dedicated to the discussion and scholarship of art and philosophy is to launch in March 2017. Headed by Peter Ballantine, the Judd-Hume Prize will consist of an annual grant of £30,000 and a two-month residency in Edinburgh for a writer, philosopher or architect proposing to investigate a ‘seriously neglected’ topic in the field. The prize is dedicated to the artist Donald Judd (with whom Ballantine worked for many years) and the empirical philosopher David Hume. The inaugural fellow will be Gottfried Boehm, Professor Emeritus University of Basel.

Shanghai Project exhibition postponed | The Art Newspaper reports that the opening of the first edition of the Shanghai Project, a biennial exhibition organised by Hans-Ulrich Obrist and Yongwoo Lee, has been delayed until April 2017. The exhibition was due to open this September. Instead, a ‘community-based event’ featuring interactive pavilions, pop-up libraries, and public forums will take place that month. According to Lee, opening the project’s interactive elements ahead of the exhibition will allow for feedback that will further inform the show.

Luc Hoffman (1923–2016) | Hans Lukas (‘Luc’) Hoffman, founder of the Fondation Vincent Van Gogh Arles, has died at the age of 93 (French language article). Hoffman, who was born in Basel in 1923, is probably best known as the co-founder of the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and for his conservation work in France’s Camargue region, south of Arles. In 2008, he set up the permanent framework for the Fondation Van Gogh, an initiative intended to preserve the memory of the artist and foster contemporary art. He is survived by his four children, including the art collector Maja Hoffman.

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