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Recreation of Palmyra’s triumphal arch unveiled in London

19 April 2016

Our daily round-up of news from the art world

Replica of destroyed Palmyrene arch rises in Trafalgar Square | A replica of a Roman triumphal at Palmyra was unveiled in London’s Trafalgar Square today. Cut from marble using computer-controlled drills, the near-facsimile is the creation of the Institute for Digital Archaeology (a collaboration between Oxford and Harvard Universities, working with Dubai’s Museum of the Future) and will tour to New York and Dubai. The project is intended to raise awareness of Middle Eastern heritage, as well as showcasing the role of digital technology in the archaeological sector. But some commentators have expressed scepticism about this and similar projects, arguing that the funds would be better used more directly to help Syrians safeguard their heritage. Click here for more on Palmyra’s heritage.

Database reveals 23,000 items missing from French national collections | Some 23,000 items from France’s national collection have gone missing since an inventory was established in 1929, reports Liberation. (French language article.) Using the ‘Sherlock’ database, the newspaper has been able to establish that every year hundreds of items belonging to the nation disappear from embassies and government buildings in France and abroad. According to Le Figaro, (French language article) most of these ‘lost’ objects are small – paintings, trinkets and desks, for example – but other missing items, including five monumental tapestries that vanished from France’s embassy in Guinea, are ‘far less discreet’.

The Art Newspaper announces change of leadership | Jane Morris will step down as editor of The Art Newspaper in June after nearly 12 years at the helm. Morris, who joined TAN in 2005, has presided over a period of substantial growth. She will maintain a close relationship with the publication as editor-at-large, while deputy editor Javier Pes will take over the editorial reins.

Bow Arts Trust receives £600,000 from social investment programme | The Arts Impact Fund has named the first three beneficiaries of its arts-specific investment programme. It has announced that £1 million of social investment will be split between South East Dance (£350,000), Titchfield Festival Theatre (£150,000) and Bow Arts Trust (£600,000). The funds allocated to the latter will be a boon to the organisation’s laudable programme of providing affordable studio space for artists.

Miami rejects major Zaha Hadid proposal | City officials have rejected the late Zaha Hadid’s plans for a major car park and public plaza in Miami Beach. Hadid became involved with the project in 2011, but budget and design concerns caused the project to stall.

Entertainment agency WME | IMG buys stake in Frieze fairs | As part of a partnership plan, entertainment agency WME | IMG is investing an as yet unknown sum into Frieze’s London and New York art fairs. According to Art News, part of the deal involves the firm agreeing to sponsor the Frieze Tate Fund.

Mark Bradford to represent US at 2017 Venice Biennale | Artist Mark Bradford is to represent the USA at the 57th Venice Biennale next year, and has been tasked with creating a site-specific installation. US pavilion co-curator and Rose Art Museum director Christopher Bedford has described Bradford as ‘the leading American abstract painter of his generation’, adding that there is ‘no artist…better positioned to represent the United States in the 21st century.’