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Police investigate attempted theft of Rembrandts from Dulwich Picture Gallery

Plus: Met Museum announces bequest of $80m and 375 works from Jayne Wrightsman | Rio Art Museum could close due to funding delays | and Open Society Foundations pledges $15m to aid repatriation of African objects

14 November 2019

Our daily round-up of news from the art world

Police investigate attempted theft of Rembrandts from Dulwich Picture Gallery | Dulwich Picture Gallery is closed to the public as police investigate a break-in and attempted robbery that took place last night. The intruders were detected by the gallery’s security system while attempting to remove two paintings by Rembrandt in the temporary exhibition ‘Rembrandt’s Light’ (until 2 February 2020).

Met Museum announces bequest of $80m and 375 works from Jayne Wrightsman | The Metropolitan Museum in New York has received a bequest of 375 artworks and $80m of funding from the late philanthropist Jayne Wrightsman. The gift expands the holdings of several departments, including those of European paintings and decorative arts, Asian art, and drawings and prints. A further $80m will go to the Wrightsman Fund, which already supports new acquisitions of European art from 1500–1850. Wrightsman, who died aged 99 earlier this year, had previously donated some 900 works to the museum from a collection started with her husband Charles Wrightsman. Read Ian Wardropper’s tribute to Jayne Wrightsman here.

Rio Art Museum could close due to funding delays | The Art Newspaper reports that Rio Art Museum in Rio de Janeiro may be forced to close due to delays in federal funding, which it relies on for its payroll. Late last week, 126 museum staff, none of whom had apparently been paid since September, received advance dismissal notices from the museum’s administrator, the Odeon Institute. The notices took effect this week and the museum’s executive director and cultural director have already left their posts. If a solution is not found, the museum may close as soon as next month.

Open Society Foundations pledges $15m to aid repatriation of African objects | The Open Society Foundations in New York has pledged $15m towards an initiative working to facilitate the return of African cultural artefacts. The initiative will distribute grants to support the repatriation efforts of various organisations and networks over the next four years.

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