What We Learned This Week

People love the Louvre and many artists struggle to make ends meet—business as usual in the art world this week.

Are artists getting poorer? It has been reported that a majority of independent artists earn less than $10,000 a year after tax in the States, and less than £5,000 in the UK, with almost 10% stating their income as zero. We can’t all be Jeff Koons, can we?

This week it was Bonhams’s turn to deal with attribution issues, as a £176,500 sale from 2015 was refunded by the auction house. The terracotta piece, The Worker, was attributed to Mahmoud Moussa when it was sold to the Dalloul family, who are going through their collection to clear out the imposters. Basel Dalloul is currently looking to form an authentication board for Middle Eastern artists.

It’s official, people love the Louvre—the French attraction has been deemed the most Instagrammed museum in the world, with a ginormous 7.4 million visitors lining up to snap a selfie with the Mona Lisa alone. The New York Metropolitan and MoMA came in second and third place. It was also revealed that “art” was the fifth most popular hashtag on the whole social media platform this year—though, we imagine most images linked with said hashtag wouldn’t make it into the Louvre…

Some top-notch painting shows have opened in the UK this week, with the much-snapped Rose Wiley show at the Serpentine in London and Nicolas Party (best family name ever) opening a trippy installation in Oxford—keep an eye on Elephant early next week for pieces about both.

This week the British laid their half-hearted anti-monarchist tendencies to one side and went totally wild for the engagement of young Prince Haz and Meghan Markle. The engagement was perfectly timed considering the release of the second season of much-loved Netflix series The Crown next week—are their PR teams in cahoots? The couple decided that Nottingham—aka the Queen of the Midlands—would be the ideal spot for their first official stroll around, visiting the city’s Nottingham Contemporary for the Terrance Higgins Trust World Aids Day charity fair. We’ve already spotted at least ten over-subscribed event invites on Facebook to Harry’s stag do. Fancy dress we presume? What could possibly go wrong…

Image: Nicolas Party, Speakers, 2017. Courtesy the artist and The Modern Institute/Tony Webster Ltd, Glasgow. Photo by Ben Westoby
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