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Art Dubai postponed indefinitely due to coronavirus

Plus: Emilia Beatriz wins 2020/21 Margaret Tait Award | Italy rejects arrest warrant for Old Master forger | Proposal to turn Sydney’s Cockatoo Island into art attraction rejected by officials | Peter Dreher (1932–2020) | and MOCA Tucson appoints Laura Copelin its executive director and chief curator

3 March 2020

Our daily round-up of news from the art world

Art Dubai postponed indefinitely due to coronavirus | The organisers of Art Dubai have today announced that the fair will be postponed indefinitely, amid fears over the spread of Covid-19, of which there are currently 21 recorded cases in the UAE. Scheduled to take place from 25–28 March, the fair will be replaced by a new programme of exhibitions and events hosted at museums and galleries in Dubai, while some of the fair’s programme, such as the Global Art Forum, will go ahead as planned. Art Dubai has stated that it will offer international galleries a free booth at the next edition.

Emilia Beatriz wins 2020/21 Margaret Tait Award | The artist Emilia Beatriz has been named by LUX Scotland as the winner of the 2020/21 Margaret Tait Award. The prize, Scotland’s most prestigious for Scottish or Scotland-based artists working with the moving image, is awarded in partnership with Glasgow Film and includes a new commission. Beatriz, who works across film, photography, performance and sound to address themes of grief, healing and ecology, will focus on the notion of ‘barrunto’, a Puerto Rican term for bodily unrest in response to signals from the environment. Beatriz was presented with the award yesterday at the world premier of Ashley (2020), a film by the award’s previous winner Jamie Crewe.

Italy rejects arrest warrant for Old Master forger | The court of appeal in Bologna has rejected the European arrest warrant issued by a French court for Lino Frongia, who is accused of forging an El Greco painting in an investigation led by the Parisian judge Aude Burési. Frongia’s lawyer, Tatiana Minchiarelli, argued that the warrant did not provide sufficient evidence. Later this week the court of appeal in Milan will pass judgement on the cases of Giuliano Ruffini and his son Mathieu, who are battling arrest warrants for the alleged sale of multiple fake Old Masters. 

Proposal to turn Sydney’s Cockatoo Island into art attraction rejected by officials | A proposal by a group of Australian businesses, known as the Cockatoo Island Foundation Limited, to offer $80m towards the conversion of the largest island in Sydney Harbour, Cockatoo, into an site for large-scale contemporary art installations, has been rejected. A former ship-building facility containing several abandoned factories, the island has been used as a venue for temporary installations during the Biennale of Sydney, but members of the foundation called for $200m of federal funding to develop a permanent attraction modelled on Japan’s Naoshima art island. The Sydney Harbour Federation Trust has rejected the proposal, with chairman Joseph Carrozzi calling it ‘a commercialised enterprise’ that is not sufficiently community-minded.

Peter Dreher (1932–2020) | The German painter Peter Dreher has died aged 87. Born in 1932, Dreher began his practice in the wake of the Second World War and made his name with repetitive, highly observational works such as Every Day is a Good Day, a series started in 1974 that saw him produce over 5,000 paint studies of the same everyday drinking glass. Dreher taught at the State Academy in Karlsruhe from 1968–97, counting Anselm Kiefer and Eva Rosenstiel among his students.

MOCA Tucson appoints Laura Copelin its executive director and chief curator | The Museum of Contemporary Art in Tucson, Arizona has appointed Laura Copelin as its new interim executive director and chief curator. Copelin was previously executive director and curator at Ballroom Marfa, where she is now curator-at-large.