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The week in art news – TEFAF Maastricht moves to June, now jam-packed with fairs

21 January 2022

The European Fine Art Fair (TEFAF) has announced 25–30 June as the new dates for TEFAF Maastricht, postponed from March. The move means that June is set to be the busiest month in the art fair calendar with the Dutch fair coming after Art Basel (16–19 June) and overlapping with a rescheduled BRAFA (19–26) June) and Masterpiece London (30 June–6 July). Meanwhile, of the spring fairs, Art Rotterdam will now take place in May rather than February, while Art Basel Hong Kong is still going ahead in March, but has contingency plans for May. Of the crush of fair activity in June and continuing Covid uncertainty, Charlotte van Leerdam, managing director of TEFAF Maastricht, told the Art Newspaper: ‘Everyone is pinning their hopes on May and June then September and October – I think people are already getting worried about November.’

The Courtauld Institute and Kings College London have this week announced a 10-year ‘strategic partnership’ in which the two self-governing institutions, both part of the University of London, will develop a series of joint post-graduate degrees, likely to be offered in 2024/25, and share facilities. Undergraduates at each institution are to be allowed to take courses at the other. Alixe Bovey, dean and deputy director of the Courtauld, told the Art Newspaper: ‘Our students are curious about other subjects; this partnership will allow us to tackle one of the biggest problems facing a niche institution.’ In the Evening Standard, Lord Browne – chairman of the board of governors of the Courtauld – wrote, ‘At a time when commitment to the arts is being questioned and funding is scarce, this represents an innovative and sustainable way forward.’

Lord Sainsbury of Preston Candover, chairman of the supermarket chain for 23 years and a major patron of the arts in the UK, has died at the age of 94. In 1963, John Sainsbury established the Linbury charitable trust with his wife, the former ballet dancer Anya Linden – with the trust donating more than £150m to art and heritage organisations. With his brothers Simon and Tim Sainsbury, he contributed the funds for the building of the National Gallery extension that is named after the family. Lord Sainsbury served on the boards of many museums, including the Dulwich Picture Gallery, the National and Tate galleries and the Ashmolean Museum, as well as other arts organisations.

The Smithsonian Institution has named Cynthia Chavez Lamar as director of the National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, D.C.. A member of the San Felipe Pueblo tribe from New Mexico, Chavez Lamar is the third director in the history of the institution, which was founded in 1989. In other appointments, Claire Bernardi is taking up the reins at the Musée de l’Orangerie in Paris; Bernardi, currently chief curator of heritage at the Musée d’Orsay, was appointed by the French Minister of Culture on the recommendation of the Orsay’s new director Christophe Léribault. The Palais de Tokyo has appointed Guillaume Désange to take over from Emma Lavigne. And in the UK, Clare Lilley is the new director of Yorkshire Sculpture Park, taking over from its founding director, Peter Murray.