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Shakespeare First Folio discovered on Scottish island

Plus: ‘Panama Papers’ shine light on art world’s offshore dealings | Leopold Museum returns Schiele drawings to descendants of former owner | Ben Rivers wins EYE art & film prize | Recommended reading – Donald Trump’s taste in art and Palmyra after ISIS

8 April 2016

Our daily round-up of news from the art world

Shakespeare First Folio discovered on the Isle of Bute | Just when you thought Shakespeare anniversary mania was about to peak, more Bard-related excitement hits the headlines. A copy of the playwright’s 1623 First Folio has been discovered in Mount Stuart House on the Isle of Bute and appraised as genuine. The goatskin-bound book is one of only around 230 known to exist. It is the only known source of Martin Droeshout’s famous portrait of the writer and, without it, there would be no other record of 18 of Shakespeare’s plays, including Macbeth and Julius Caesar. Before it found its way to Bute in 1896, it was owned by an 18th-century literary editor, but its history before that has yet to surface.

‘Panama Papers’ shine light on art world’s offshore dealings | Today’s reports from the cache of documents leaked from Panamanian law- and wealth-management firm Mossack Fonseca turn their attention to the art world. For an overview of what we know so far, turn to The Art Newspaper’s report. A longer study of the implications of these leaks for the art world can be found on The Guardian website.

Leopold Museum returns Schiele drawings to descendants of former owner | After lengthy negotiations, Vienna’s Leopold Museum has agreed to return two Egon Schiele drawings to a descendant of Karl Mayländer, their owner before the Second World War. After the German invasion of Poland in 1939, Mayländer, a businessman and art collector, was deported to the Lodz ghetto and murdered. Before his deportation, he left five Schiele drawings to his partner, who sold them after the war had ended. Under the terms of the new agreement, three of these drawings will remain at the Leopold Museum.

Ben Rivers wins EYE art and film prize | Artist and film maker Ben Rivers has been announced as the second winner of the Amsterdam EYE Film Museum’s annual £25,000 prize for art and film. ‘Ben Rivers is one of the new strong voices of his generation, where boundaries between cinema and the other arts no longer exist. In his visually stunning work, he shows his engagement with today’s society,’ said EYE CEO Sandra den Hamer.

Recommended reading – Donald Trump’s taste in art, and Palmyra after ISIS | If you’ve ever had the slightest curiosity about Donald Trump’s taste in art – who hasn’t? – then here’s a story for you. Art News’s story on the contender for the Republican Presidential nomination is an eye opener in more ways than one – not least for offering comparisons between the colourful tycoon and Andy Warhol. Elsewhere, The Guardian has a picture piece on its website assessing the exact scale of the damage inflicted on Palmyra by ISIS militants. Though much of this has been common knowledge for some time, it’s startling – not to mention depressing – to see it set out visually in this manner.

 

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