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The Rake’s progress: last week in gossip

26 April 2018

Introducing Rakewell, Apollo’s wandering eye on the art world. Look out for regular posts taking a rakish perspective on art and museum stories.

The American talk-show host John Oliver has revealed that he took a punt at Russell Crowe’s recent divorce auction. Among the items Oliver purchased were Crowe’s waistcoat from the film of Les Misérables and, erm, a leather jock strap worn by the Aussie actor in Cinderella Man (and acquired for a cool $7,000). ‘I’ve never seen Cinderella Man, despite now owning thousands of dollars worth of props from it,’ Oliver admitted. ‘And to be honest, I’m never going to see it: it is $13 on Amazon!’


In the Sunday Times, Waldemar Januszczak spoke to Gillian Wearing about her new sculpture of the suffragist Millicent Fawcett, which was unveiled in Parliament Square this week. The location, it turns out, is a new one for Wearing, who despite living in London since her student days (and at one point squatting just across the river in Kennington), had somehow never set foot in the square prior to being commissioned. ‘I’d only seen it from the bus’, she admitted.


A proposal to open a ‘Brexit Museum’ has raised eyebrows since the idea was mooted a few weeks ago. What would go it, for one? Speaking on a Telegraph podcast, Chief Secretary of the Treasury Liz Truss put forward a novel suggestion: ‘What you are asking me is a bit like Room 101 – what would you put in it. There are a few things from the campaign, maybe a Cornish pasty, some leeks and of course the [Vote Leave campaign] bus,’ she said. Truss also ruminated on committing Nigel Farage to the museum: ‘He could be embalmed, like those Soviet leaders.’


Kanye West has been busy of late, using Twitter as an outlet for his thoughts on philosophy, fashion and art. Among his more intriguing endorsements have been shout outs for luminaries including Joseph Beuys and David Hammons:

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