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US museums respond to Inauguration Day

Plus: The future of the NEA is in doubt | ISIS destroys more monuments in Palmyra | Egypt’s Museum of Islamic Art reopens | Jorge Daniel Veneciano resigns as director of Museum of Arts and Design | Proposals for Trafalgar Square’s Fourth Plinth revealed | Paddle 8 parent company files for bankruptcy

20 January 2017

Our daily round-up of news from the art world

US Museums respond to Inauguration Day | Museums and art institutions across America are staging special programmes in response to Donald Trump’s presidential inauguration today, reports The Art Newspaper. Many institutions have announced part or full closures in response to calls for an ‘art strike’ (a full list can be found here) while others, including the Whitney and the New Museum, will be free to the public throughout the day.

The future of the NEA is in doubt | The political website The Hill reports that the new administration plans to privatise the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, while the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities would be ‘eliminated entirely’. As the Guardian points out, the congressional budget office has calculated that defunding the NEA would save ‘less than 0.000075% of the annual federal budget of $3.9tn’.

Palmyra: ISIS destroys further monuments | Syria’s antiquities chief Maamoun Abdulkarim has announced today that ISIS terrorists have destroyed a tetrapylon and part of the facade of the ancient city’s Roman theatre. Syrian authorities believe that the demolitions took place over a week ago, but chose not to release details until accurate satellite images were made available.

Egypt’s Museum of Islamic Art reopens | Cairo’s Museum of Islamic Art will reopen today, three years after it was severely damaged by a car bomb. According to the Daily Telegraph, all but 10 of the 179 artefacts damaged by the explosion in 2014 have been repaired.

Jorge Daniel Veneciano to leave Museum of Arts and Design | Jorge Daniel Veneciano has announced that he is to step down, after just five months, as director of New York’s Museum of Arts and Design. According to the New York Times, Veneciano, who joined MAD from the Museo del Barrio at the end of August, is to leave the institution at the end of the month, citing ‘current political events’. Veneciano says that he will concentrate on writing and consulting.

Proposals for Trafalgar Square’s Fourth Plinth revealed | Proposals for the next two commissions to grace Trafalgar Square’s vacant Fourth Plinth have gone on public display at London’s National Gallery. The five shortlist features proposals from Huma Bhabha, Heather Phillipson, Michael Rakowitz, Damián Ortega, and Raqs Media Colletive. The two artists selected for the next two commissions will be named in March.

Paddle 8 parent company files for bankruptcy | Auctionata Paddle 8, the parent company of online auctioneer Paddle 8, has filed for bankruptcy. According to The Art Newspaper, the company is discussing options with investors for its Auctionata subsidiary. Paddle 8, the company’s contemporary venture, has said that it has found an investor to buy it out.

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