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Art News Daily

Model for Courbet’s L’Origine du Monde identified

Plus: French advertising director sues Jeff Koons for plagiarism | Karen Quinlan appointed director of National Portrait Gallery in Australia | Jane Fortune (1942–2018) | and Sarah Perks to leave HOME Manchester

25 September 2018

Our daily round-up of news from the art world

Model for Courbet’s L’Origine du Monde identified | The model for L’Origine du Monde (1866), Gustave Courbet’s famous painting of a woman’s genitalia, has been identified as the Parisian ballet dancer Constance Queniaux, rather than Courbet’s lover Joanna Hiffernan, as previously assumed. According to Le Figaro, the discovery was made by the French scholar Claude Schopp while he was reading correspondence between Alexandre Dumas fils, son of the Three Muskateers author, and George Sand. The new identification has been supported by Sylvie Aubenas, the head of the prints department at the French National Library, who declares that she is ‘99 per cent certain’ that Queniaux is the model. Schopp, who won the Prix Goncourt for Biography last year, will publish his findings in a new book next week.

French advertising director sues Jeff Koons for plagiarism | Jeff Koons is being sued of plagiarism once again, the Telegraph reports. The advertising creative director Franck Davidovici claims that the American sculptor’s Fait d’Hiver, which was bought by the Prada Foundation for some £2.8m in 2007, is a ‘servile copy’ of an advertising campaign Davidovici created for the clothing brand Naf-Naf in 1985. Davidovici has filed a suit in France against Koons, claiming €300,000 for copyright infringement; the Centre Pompidou, the Prada Foundation, and the publisher Flammarion are also being sued, since they have each reproduced images of Koons’ sculpture.

Karen Quinlan appointed director of National Portrait Gallery in Australia | The National Portrait Gallery of Australia in Canberra has announced the appointment of Karen Quinlan as its new director. Quinlan has been director of the Bendigo Art Gallery for 18 years. Quinlan replaces Angus Trumble, who announced earlier this year that he would not seek reappointment when his contract ends in 2019, having held the role since 2013.

Jane Fortune (1942–2018) | Jane Fortune, the founder and president of Advancing Women Artists Foundation (AWA), has died at the age of 76. Fortune established the not-for-profit organisation with the aim of ensuring greater visibility for artworks by women that are held in churches and museums in Tuscany. For a full appreciation of Fortune’s achievements, read her interview from July with Zachary Small of Hyperallergic. 

Sarah Perks to leave HOME in Manchester | Sarah Perks has announced that she will stand down from her position as Artistic Director of Visual Art at HOME in Manchester. Perks has led the visual art programme at HOME since its inception in 2015, having previously directed programming for six years at HOME’s precursor, Cornerhouse; over this combined period, she has curated more than 30 exhibitions. Perks will now focus on a number of independent curatorial and writing projects.

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