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Stefan Kalmár named director of ICA

19 September 2016

Our daily round-up of news from the art world

Stefan Kalmár appointed director of London’s ICA | Stefan Kalmár, the German-born executive director of Artists Space in New York, has been named as the next director of London’s Institute of Contemporary Arts. Kalmár, who joined the Manhattan non-profit in 2009, has been praised for steering the venue through times of recession with an innovative programme and for trebling its income, reports The Art Newspaper. Kalmár will take up the post at the ICA in November.

Edinburgh’s Fruitmarket Gallery wins Freelands Prize | The Freelands Foundation has announced that it has awarded its inaugural Freelands Award for art to Edinburgh’s Fruitmarket Gallery, allowing it to mount a major show by the artist Jacqueline Donachie. The prize, which was established to help regional arts organisations to present the work of mid-career female artists, is worth £100,000, a quarter of which goes directly to the chosen artist. ‘With this award, The Fruitmarket Gallery will provide Jacqueline with the financial freedom and curatorial support to create ambitious new work and enable greater recognition,’ said Elizabeth Murdoch, founder of the Freelands Foundation.

Stolen pre-Columbian sculpture rediscovered in London | The Art Recovery Group has hailed the recovery of an indigenous Columbian ceramic sculpture that disappeared from a museum in Cartagena in 1939. Art historian Beth West contacted the ARG after it was consigned to London’s Hampstead Auctions for sale. The consignor, who wishes to remain anonymous, says he was given the artefact when he visited Columbia in 1999, and has until now been unaware of its missing status. The statue was returned to the Columbian state at a small ceremony at the country’s London embassy earlier this month.

David Breslin to join curatorial team at the Whitney | David Breslin, chief curator of the Menil Drawing Institute, has joined the staff of the Whitney Museum, as the director of its collection. ‘David is that rare and remarkable combination of a scholarly curator and sensitive champion of living artists,’ said the Whitney’s deputy director for programmes Scott Rothkopf. ‘It is an honor to be able to work with this dynamic and growing collection and help convey the diverse histories and possibilities of American art,’ Breslin added.

Recommended reading | ‘Let’s not shut art into a circle of so-called popular culture,’ writes Jean-Marie Hordé the director of the Bastille Theatre in a Le Monde article about the tension between ‘elitist’ and ‘populist’ tendencies in France’s public arts funding (French language article). Meanwhile on New York Magazine’s Vulture site, Jerry Saltz complains that art has become confined in the straightjacket of art-historical context. ‘Our idea of art history is dead already; it just doesn’t know it,’ he writes. In similarly argumentative form, Sunday Times art critic Waldemar Januszczak praises the Hayward Gallery’s offsite ‘Infinite Mix’ show, dismisses the idea that outgoing Tate director Nicholas Serota might be a ‘visionary’ and quotes from a Kendrick Lamar record (£).