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MoMA to close for four months during final stage of expansion

Plus: Germany puts €1.9m towards research on colonial-era artefacts | Nabatean carved stones returned to Jordan | and Met curator wins $100,000 Vilcek Prize honouring immigrants in US

5 February 2019

Our daily round-up of news from the art world

MoMA to close for four months during final stage of expansion | The Museum of Modern Art in New York will close its doors to the public from 15 June to 21 October, reports the New York Times. This is in order to carry out the final stage of the museum’s $400m expansion project, which will create 40,000 square feet of additional space. When it reopens, the entirety of MoMA’s permanent collection displays will have been rehung, with the inaugural temporary exhibitions also drawn from its holdings. Also announced today are a $200m donation to the museum from the estate of David Rockefeller, and a new partnership with the currently closed Studio Museum in Harlem, ‘Studio Museum at MoMA’. 

Germany puts €1.9m towards provenance research on colonial-era artefacts | The German government is putting €1.9m this year towards research into the provenance of artefacts that entered the country’s museums during the colonial era, the Art Newspaper reports. Institutions are invited to make grant applications, which will be assessed by a panel of eight experts on behalf of the German Lost Art Foundation. The panel will include Bénédicte Savoy, co-writer with Felwine Sarr of a recent report commissioned by Macron on the restitution of African heritage.

Nabatean carved stones returned to Jordan | Three stones originating from the altar of a 2,000-year-old Nabatean temple in present-day Jordan have been identified and repatriated. The artefacts were acquired by an art dealer in Spain, Diego López de Aragón, from the estate of a collector and diplomat who in 1969 served as ambassador to Ammam, where the stones were once held (it is unclear whether they were sold or given as a gift). 

Curator wins $100,000 Vilcek Prize honouring immigrants in US | The art historian and curator Carmen C. Bambach has been awarded the $100,000 Vilcek Prize for Excellence, which honours immigrants in the US who have ‘had a significant impact on American society’. Bambach, who was born in Chile, is the curator of Italian and Spanish drawings at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.