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Shortlist for Hepworth Prize for Sculpture announced

Plus: Ancient Olmec statues returned to Mexico | Civil rights leader to be honoured with US Capitol statue | V&A removes advert for volunteer curatorial position | and Australian Senate publishes report on Burrup Peninsula rock art

22 March 2018

Our daily round-up of news from the art world

Shortlist for Hepworth Prize for Sculpture announced | The Hepworth Wakefield museum has announced the five artists shortlisted for the Hepworth Prize for Sculpture 2018, to be awarded in November. The £30,000 biennial prize, inaugurated in 2016, honours a UK-based artist who has significantly contributed to the development of contemporary sculpture; its first winner was Macclesfield-born sculptor Helen Marten. The five shortlisted artists this year are Michael Dean, Mona Hatoum, Philip Lai, Magali Reus, and Cerith Wyn Evans.

Ancient Olmec statues returned to Mexico | Two 3,000-year-old wooden carvings have been returned to Mexico, reports the BBC. The Olmec artefacts, which the Mexico claimed were taken illegally from an archaeological site in the eastern state of Veracruz, had been at the centre of a long dispute between Mexican authorities and Costa Rican antiquities collector Leonardo Patterson. Around 1,000 items, including the Olmec statues, were seized from Patterson in Munich in 2008; in 2015 a German court found the dealer guilty of trading in forgeries and possessing looted artefacts.

Civil rights leader to be honoured with US Capitol statue | Florida governor Rick Scott this week signed a bill that will see a statue of civil rights leader Mary McLeod Bethune replace that of a Confederate general in the US Capitol. Bethune, best-known for founding a school for African-American girls in 1904, will be the first African American represented in the National Statuary Hall.

V&A removes advert for volunteer curatorial position | The Victoria & Albert museum has removed an advertisement for an unpaid Curatorial Volunteer position, requiring postgraduate-level research experience, after it was questioned on Twitter. The museum apologised for the ‘error’ of posting the vacancy, commenting that the ‘position is not in line with our current policies’.

Australian Senate publishes report on Burrup Peninsula rock art | The Australian Senate has published its long-awaited inquiry into the protection of Aboriginal rock art of the Burrup Peninsula, or Murujuga, in western Australia. The report, which failed to reach a consensus on the question of whether to pursue World Heritage listing for the site, did find that its indigenous co-owners, the Murujuga Aboriginal Corporation, had been insufficiently consulted – ‘left out’ of discussions over its future.

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