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Baron van Dedem’s masterpieces go on show at the Mauritshuis

Plus: Reopening of Bass Museum delayed | Narciso Contreras awarded Carmignac Photojournalism prize | Bronx Museum names interim executives following resignations | Study finds that ‘mysterious smear’ on Munch’s The Scream is candle wax | and Marc Riboud (1923-2016)

1 September 2016

Our daily round-up of news from the art world

Van Dedem bequest goes on display at Mauritshuis | Five 17th-century masterpieces have gone on display today at The Hague’s Mauritshuis in a special presentation in honour of Baron van Dedem, who donated the works to the Friends of the Mauritshuis Foundation almost 15 years ago. Director Emilie Gordenker has described the paintings in question – Still Life of Tazza by Pieter Claesz, Still Life of Fruit and Wine Glasses on a Silver Plate by Willem Kalf, Brazilian Landscape with a House under Construction by Frans Post, Winter Landscape at Arnhem by Salomon van Ruysdael and Peasants Dancing outside a Bohemian Inn by Roelant Savery – as the ‘most significant [donation] ever made to the Mauritshuis’. Van Dedem, who died last year at the age of 86, donated the works to the museum in 2002. The parties involved agreed that the Baron would be able to keep the paintings until the time of his death. In his lifetime, he was widely regarded as having the most important collection of Dutch and Flemish Old Masters ever assembled in England, where he lived.

Reopening of Bass Museum delayed | Miami’s Bass Museum, which has been closed for renovations for more than a year, has been forced to push back its reopening to next year, having initially been scheduled for 1 December. As the New York Times reports, completion of the $12 million project on the landmark 1930s building was due to coincide with Art Basel Miami Beach. ‘The process of renovating historic landmarks differs greatly from that of modern structures,’ said executive director Silvia Karman Cubiñá. ‘We have needed to extend our construction deadline to accommodate these intricacies.’

Narciso Contreras awarded Carmignac Photojournalism prize | Mexican photographer Narciso Contreras has been announced winner of the 7th edition of the Carmignac Photojournalism Award for his ‘compelling’ report on the Libyan refugee crisis. The Award grants its winner €50,000 in order to finance new projects, as well as a touring exhibition and a fully financed monograph. The award comes despite some controversy over his work: in 2014, Contreras was found to have (very slightly) manipulated an image he took in Libya, a misdemeanour for which Associated Press was moved to ‘sever its relationship’ with him.

Bronx Museum names interim executives following resignations | Following the resignation of two governing executives and four members of its board of trustees, New York’s Bronx Museum of the Arts has announced the appointment of an interim board leadership. Board member Joseph Mizzi has been named Chair, while architect Joan Krevlin will serve as Co-Vice Chair. ‘The board of trustees fully supports the vision and programs that our executive director, Holly Block, has set in place and we are dedicated to pursuing them,’ Mr Mizzi said in a statement.

Study finds that ‘mysterious smear’ on Munch’s The Scream is candle wax | Researchers from the University of Antwerp have discovered that a previously unidentified mark on Edvard Munch’s most famous iteration of The Scream is wax from a candle. In the past, alternative theories had been offered, most famously that the smear was the remnant of bird droppings. (Munch often painted outdoors.) According to the Guardian, the team behind the research went as far as collecting samples of avian excreta to analyse against the strange mark – a task they admit that they were ‘a little embarrassed’ performing.

Marc Riboud (1923–2016) | The legendary photojournalist Marc Riboud has died aged 93, reportedly of complications related to Alzheimer’s disease. Famed primarily for his work in conflict zones in the developing world, Riboud ‘captured moments of grace even in the most fraught situations’, says the New York Times. Riboud, a protégé of Henri Cartier-Bresson was drawn not to perfunctory reportage but to ordinary people carrying out their day-to-day lives even in the most troubled political context. As a measure of the timeless appeal of his work, he was honoured with exhibitions at institutions including the Art Institute of Chicago (1964), the Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris (1985) and on three separate occasions at the International Center of Photography in New York (1975, 1988 and 1997).

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