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2017 Serpentine Pavilion commission announced

21 February 2017

Our daily round-up of news from the art world

2017 Serpentine Pavilion commission announced | Berlin-based architect Diébédo Francis Kéré, has been commissioned to design the 2017 Serpentine Pavilion, it was announced today. Kéré, who was born in Burkino Faso, is the first African to have been selected for the Serpentine’s annual commission, the latest in a series of high-profile accolades for the architect; he recently presented Burkina Faso’s new national parliament building at the Venice Biennale. The design for the Serpentine’s summer pavilion, now in its 17th edition, is modelled on the form of a tree canopy and according to Kéré is intended to serve the same function: ‘a simple open shelter to create a sense of freedom and community’.

UK Cultural Property Bill will become law | The Cultural Property Bill (Armed Conflicts) passed its third reading without amendment in the House of Commons last night. The bill will enable the government to ratify the 1954 Hague Convention for the protection of cultural property in the event of armed conflict, criminalising dealing in certain exported cultural objects. Proposed amendments supported by some members of the art and antiques trade, have been rejected and the bill is now waiting for Royal Assent before becoming law.

Alan Aldridge (1943–2017) | British graphic designer Alan Aldridge has died aged 73. Born in the East End of London, Aldridge was celebrated for his psychedelic 1960s and ’70s book and album cover designs, which captured the spirit of the age. In 2008, London’s Design Museum held a retrospective of the work of the self-styled ‘graphic entertainer’ for Penguin, the Beatles, and Andy Warhol, among other clients.

Sarah Forrest wins Margaret Tait award | The 2017/18 Margaret Tait award has been awarded to Glasgow-based artist Sarah Forrest. The award was founded in 2010 in honour of experimental documentary film-maker Margaret Tait (1918–99) and is given each year to mid-career Scottish or Scotland-based artists who, like Tait, experiment with film and moving image. Forrest will receive £10,000 to produce a new work to be screened at next year’s Glasgow Film Festival.

Metropolitan Museum director defends NEA | Thomas P. Campbell, CEO and Director of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, has spoken out against the Trump administration’s proposed elimination of the National Endowment for the Arts. Campbell’s official statement warns that ‘[a]bolishing the NEA would have disastrous consequences for the arts and for communities’ across the US. For more details on the proposed defunding, see Brent Reidy’s comments here.