A&O Shorts

The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (MFA) is putting their recently acquired Claes Oldenburg works in an unusual context. The 89-year-old Oldenburg has created a series of sculptures that look like maquettes, comprised in part of familiar works from his oeuvre. Shelf Life is a clever play on words from an artist looking back on a rich and full career, reviewing his body of work and seeing what sticks. The works themselves project off the wall on their own shelves, becoming miniature retrospective exhibitions in still lives.

Robert Townsend’s new solo exhibition, Wanderlust, is now at Altamira Fine Art, in Jackson, Wyoming. Los Angeles-based photorealist painter Robert Townsend is known for his boldly colored paintings of Americana. Wanderlust explores the life and times of his 1960’s muse, Helen, featuring new large-scale oils and watercolors.

The U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs announced today that artist Martin Puryear to represent the US at the 2019 Venice Biennale. In its 58th year, the Biennale will run May 11 through Nov. 24, 2019. The Madison Square Park Conservancy will serve as this year’s curator of the United States Pavilion and will commision site-specific work from Puryear. Puryear follows 2017’s representative for the US, painter Mark Bradford.

Now at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA), In and About LA showcases the late Robert Rauschenberg’s photographic exploration of Los Angeles. A pioneering American artist whose groundbreaking work anticipated the Pop Art movement, Rauschenberg worked in a wide range of subjects, styles, materials, and techniques, utilizing photography, printmaking, papermaking, and performance. In 1950, he began making "Combines," which bridged photography, found objects and painting, blurring the line between painting and sculpture, merging kitsch and fine art.

A new set of tariffs proposed by President Trump could hit the art world this month. As part of continued efforts to reduce the US’s trade deficit with China, the list of items subject to import tariffs continues to grow. Set to go into effect as soon as late August, that list now includes categories covering paintings, sculpture, collage, ceramics, and antiques from China. The 25 percent import tariff would present a heavy burden to galleries, individual collectors, and museums in the US.

This week the Uffizi Gallery made a significant portion of its remarkable collection much more accessible. Through a partnership with Indiana University, scholars from both institutions have been working for two years to create 3D scans of the museum’s classical sculptures. Launching this week, the Uffizi Digitization Project website hosts over 300 digitized sculptures and fragments from the collection. The digital models offer views of the sculptures and fragments heretofore only available through in-person inspection.

Now at the MIT List Visual Arts Center, The Last Days of Pompeii, an installation by multidisciplinary artist Delia Gonzalez, creates a multimedia environment, using intricate drawings, neon sculpture, architecture and music. Gonzalez's multi-layered work is informed by many sources, including history, surrealism, mythology, and mystical traditions. The Last Days of Pompeii uses the dramatic destruction of that ancient Roman city to allude to cycles of destruction and renewal, and current issues of ecological, economic, or political disaster. 

Aicon Gallery in New York is showcasing the work of New Delhi-based Shobha Broota. An educator and award-winning artist, Broota has had a 60-year career exhibiting internationally. Resonance is her first solo show in New York. The exhibition includes work from the past decade, representing two types of abstractions the artist has explored. 

Patriarchs of the Grove by William Wendt (1865-1946), leads Bonhams' California and Western Painting Auction, August 7th, in Los Angeles. Estimated at $250,000-350,000, Patriarchs of the Grove is one of Wendt’s most coveted canvases.

Andy Warhol would have been 90 years old on August, 6. Museums and art lovers the world over are celebrating. The pioneer of Pop Art died in 1987 at the age of 58, but 30 years later, his fifteen minutes of fame aren’t up and his art is still ubiquitous.