Apollo Magazine

The Rake’s progress: last week in gossip

Educating the young ’uns at Frieze; art criticism from Donald Trump; Grayson Perry's favourite hatchet jobs; and Middlesbrough's #Squirrelgate

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

Say what you like about Frieze London, it can be educational. On Saturday, the Rake was passing White Cube’s stand when he noticed an immaculately turned out gentleman steer his two small children into the booth. Pointing at Damien Hirst’s goat suspended in formaldehyde, he faced his progeny and announced: ‘Here is a selection of Hirst works made in the iconic era of the Lehman Brothers crash’. One can only hope the young ’uns don’t end up scarred for life…


More revelations into US presidential candidate Donald Trump’s artistic tastes. The New Republic’s Alex Shephard has dug up a story from John O’Donnell’s 1991 book Trumped! The Inside Story of the Real Donald Trump in which the author recounts a hotel deal between Trump and disgraced Australian entrepreneur Alan Bond in 1988. The pair were negotiating the sale of a hotel Trump had bought a few years previously, for which Bond agreed to pay $180 million. According to O’Donnell, Bond offered Trump Van Gogh’s Irises as equity, but the latter turned it down. ‘What would I do with Irises?’, he supposedly said afterwards. ‘You know what Irises is? It’s a piece of canvas with some paint on it.’


For his forthcoming exhibition at London’s Serpentine, Grayson Perry has drawn up a design for a new pot on which he has scrawled highlights from the worst reviews he has ever received – a literal interpretation of ‘constructive criticism’ if ever there was one. However, it seems one art critic feels a little left out:


Some confusion in Middlesbrough, where the local council recently discovered a dead squirrel in a frying pan. Evidently alert to the accidental destruction of works by artists including Damien Hirst and Gustav Metzger at other galleries, Middlesbrough Council quickly contacted mima director Alistair Hudson to ask whether the grisly spectacle had anything to do with his museum. Having posted an image of said squirrel to Twitter, Hudson answered enquiries with a definitive no. ‘Certainly not,’ he tweeted. ‘We only do our squirrel on the grill, not pan fried.’

Got a story for Rakewell? Get in touch at rakewell@apollomag.com or via @Rakewelltweets.

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