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Indian government forms expert panel to address Taj Mahal pollution

Plus: Eric Shiner joins White Cube in New York | Tel Aviv gallery criticised for showing Arab artists without permission | Affordable housing scheme for artists approved in East London | and New York public libraries launch free museum access scheme

17 July 2018

Our daily round-up of news from the art world

Indian government forms expert panel to address Taj Mahal pollution | The Supreme Court of India has said that unless the Indian government prevents the Taj Mahal from falling into further neglect, the landmark could be closed or demolished. The statement, made on 11 July, follows a previous warning in May, when the judges declared that the effects of pollution and insect dung were turning the marble monument yellow. According to New Delhi TV, senior Indian minister Nitin Gadkari announced today that an expert committee, headed by environment minister C. K. Mishra, has been formed to tackle the environmental threats to the 17th-century mausoleum.

White Cube appoints Eric Shiner as artistic director in New York | White Cube gallery has announced that Eric Shiner is to become its artistic director in New York. Shiner, who directed the Andy Warhol museum in Pittsburgh from 2010–16, followed by a two-year stint as a senior vice president at Sotheby’s, will assume the position this autumn; he will be based at the gallery’s New York by-appointment-only office, which opened this May.

Tel Aviv gallery criticised for ‘Stolen Arab Art’ exhibition | An exhibition in Tel Aviv entitled ‘Stolen Arab Art’ has been criticised after displaying works by well-known contemporary Arab artists without seeking permission or providing attributions. The gallery where the exhibition is on view, named the 1:1 Center for Art and Politics, said in a press statement that the lack of the artists’ knowledge or consent was a conscious ‘act of expropriation’, intended to ‘call attention to Israel’s exclusion from the Middle East family’. Speaking to Frieze, the Egyptian artist Wael Shawky, whose work is on display at the exhibition, declared that the act was ‘absolutely unacceptable’ and that he was considering taking legal action.

Affordable housing scheme for artists approved in East London | The London Borough of Barking and Dagenham has approved plans, submitted by architecture studio Apparata, for a new affordable housing scheme for artists. The Architects’ Journal reports that the £3.5m development in Barking town centre, which has been supported by the artist Grayson Perry, will provide 12 flats rented out at 65 per cent of the local market rate, along with amenities including a community arts centre and studio spaces.

New York public libraries launch free museum access scheme | New York City’s new Culture Pass programme was launched on Monday, providing members of the city’s major library systems with free access to 33 museums and institutions. According to the Wall Street Journal, Brooklyn Public Library President & CEO Linda E. Johnson hopes that the programme will ‘expand the definition of literacy’.

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