Bob Dylan Love Letters Sell for $670,000, Buffalo AKG Art Museum to Reopen in May, and More: Morning Links for November 22,2022

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The Headlines

LOTS OF LOVE.More than 40 love letters by a youngBob Dylansold for nearly $670,000atRR Auction. Those letters, penned while Dylan was still going by his birth name, Robert Zimmerman, “provide an insight into a period of his life of which not much is known,” according to theAssociated Press. Written between 1957 and 1959, they are addressed toBarbara Ann Hewitt, whom he invites to aBuddy Hollyshow in one letter. The letters will be kept at theLivraria Lelloin Porto, Portugal, which plans to keep them available for future study for Dylan enthusiasts and scholars.

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MUSEUM UPDATES.TheBuffalo AKG Art Museum—formerly the Albright-Knox Art Gallery—isofficially set to reopenin May 2023,Hilarie M. Sheetsreports in theNew York Times. New York GovernorKathy Hochulhas provided the remaining $20 million to the museum’s $230 million capital campaign, which is thought to be the biggest ever undertaken by a museum in the western part of the state.BBC NewspreviewedtheInternational African American Museum, which will open in January in Charleston, South Carolina.Michael Boulware Moore, the museum’s founding CEO, said the institution will “create a more truthful and honest articulation of American history.”Artnet Newsreported that activists protested in support ofMahsa Aminibyunfurling red bannersat theSan Francisco Museum of Modern Art. And, also in theTimes,Robin Pogrebinsat down withAnn TemkinandNaomi Beckwith, chief curator of painting at theMuseum of Modern Artand deputy and chief curator at theGuggenheim Museum, respectively, to talk about thefuture of New York art institutions.

The Digest

Mexico called on the Parisian auction houseGiquello & Associésto reconsider a sale of pre-Columbian artifacts that the country has labeled unethical. The house plans to move forward with the sale anyway.[The Art Newspaper]

Antwaun Sargentgot the profile treatment courtesy ofNate Freeman, who describes the Gagosian director as “an art world micro-celebrity.”[Vanity Fair]

The owners of the Parisian galleryBelle et Belle, who offered dozens ofPicassoworks that were pilfered from the artist’s descendants, were found guilty of having sold stolen art. They were given suspended jail sentences of up to two years and a€400,000 fine, and were forbidden from selling art for the next five years.[The Art Newspaper]

Among theBrooklyn Museum’s acquisitions in the past year wasLiza Lou’sTrailer(2000), a full-size trailer whose interior she lined with beads. Also acquired were pieces byBumpei Usui,Baseera Khan,Miles Greenberg, and more.[Artnet News]

ArtistSasha Huberhas been leading a fight to retitle a Swiss mountain named afterLouis Agassiz, a 19th-century scientist who vocally claimed that Black people were an inferior species.[The Guardian]

The Kicker

FOOD FOR THOUGHT.In the newest issue ofArtforum,Ed Ruschaeulogizes the artistBilly Al Bengston, whodied in October. Bengston, Ruscha writes, “dared to piddle with symmetrical picture-making using hearts and flowers smack in the middle of a canvas when that was practically illegal in the contemporary art world.” Bengston also happens to have been something of a beloved chef, a maker of dishes such as “Cordone Blue,” whose ingredients were mainly cans of chili and beans. Ruscha describes one party in which the singerNicocame by, and told Bengston, “Oh Billee, I love your chili parties but all I want is an ohhn-chelada.”[Artforum]

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