The Louvre Reopens and the Art News of the Week 22 – 28 June

The Louvre Museum in Paris, will open for the first time in almost four months. Christie’s will offer seminal paintings by Adrian Ghenie and Cecily Brown as part of ONE: A Global Sale of the 20th Century on 10th July 2020. Recently, the largest ceremonial site in the UK has been discovered buried right next to Stonehenge. New York museums have been organizing digital happy hours as a way to connect with their audiences.

The Louvre reopens next week

June 26, 2020 – Via artnet.com

PARIS, FRANCE – MARCH 01: The Louvre Museum in Paris, the most visited Museum in the World, which shut today over concerns over France’s coronavirus outbreak, after staff voted not to open on March 1, 2020 in Paris, France. France has reported 100 cases of the Covid-19 virus, and in an effort to curb the spread of the virus the French government has banned all indoor gatherings of more than 5,000 people. (Photo by Kiran Ridley/Getty Images)

The world’s largest art museum will reopen on July 6. The Louvre Museum in Paris, will open for the first time in almost four months. But the experience of future visitors will be affected after the isolation caused by the Coronavirus. The institution announced this week that all guests aged 11 and older will have to wear masks and all visitors will have to book a time to enter.

Only 70 percent of the museum’s 925,000 square-foot will be open to the public. The cloakroom will be closed, signs will guide gallery visitors in a one-way direction, and suitcases and other large bags will not be allowed in.

The sections set aside for the public will be the most visited sections of the site. The list includes the areas dedicated to 19th-century French painting, the Italian, Spanish, and English painting rooms, the Greek and Roman antique galleries, and the museum’s great successes such as the Winged Victory of Samothrace and the Venus de Milo.

The Louvre’s new policies can be a boon to art viewers. For those waiting to see Leonardo’s masterpiece, there is something very attractive about this new type of museum visit. The Mona Lisa, which previously could only be seen by a large number of acquisitions, will now be open for viewing by only two visitors at a time and in 10 to 15-minute increments.

Louvre President Jean-Luc Martinez explained in an interview with the New York Times that “On average, more than 75 percent of the museum’s visitors are tourists. This figure rises to 80 percent during the high summer season. After the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, we lost 40 percent of our visitors, and it took us three years to get back on track.”

“After the 2015 terrorist attacks in France and other parts of Europe, we had another 40 percent drop, but everything was back to normal after a year. This time, we don’t know what will happen. Our worst-case scenario is that it will take us three years to return to our normal visitor levels,” Martinez told the Times.

London session ONE: A Global Sale of the 20th Century

June 22, 2020 – Via artdaily.com

Adrian Ghenie, The Arrival 3, 2015. Estimate: £3,000,000-5,000,000. Christie’s Images Ltd 2020.

Christie’s will offer seminal paintings by Adrian Ghenie and Cecily Brown as part of ONE: A Global Sale of the 20th Century on 10th July 2020. “The Arrival 3” is an outstanding large-scale painting by Adrian Ghenie, an extraordinary two-meter wide cinematic vision, dating from 2015 and priced at £3,000,000-5,000,000. Arrival represents Dr. Josef Mengele: the infamous Nazi doctor, a character that is repeated throughout the artist’s work.

While the title of this work can be seen as a reference to Mengele’s arrival in exile in South America, or more broadly, the advent of a new and dark chapter in European history, it also evokes the sense of revelation that Ghenie seeks to inspire in his viewers. Inspired by his own upbringing under the totalitarian regime, Ghenie is fascinated by the way we view the past.

“Carnival and Lent” from 2006-2008 have an estimated price of £4,000,000 – £6,000,000. this work exemplifies Cecily Brown’s mastery of oil painting. This 2.5-meter canvas with textures, wrapping colors and marbled pigment spots were inspired by Pieter Brueghel’s 1559 masterpiece The Elder ‘s “The Struggle between Carnival and Lent”.

André Zlattinger, Deputy Chairman, Post-War and Contemporary Art Europe, said it about the Global Sale: “Christie’s is thrilled to offer these exceptional paintings by two artists who represent the gamut of painting in the 21st century. Cecily Brown was recently included in the Whitechapel Gallery’s group exhibition ‘Radical Figures’ which focused on those pushing the boundaries of representation. Her sources are hugely varied and Carnival and Lent place her work in dialogue with Old Masters. Adrian Ghenie’s paintings explore moments of significant change in history using figures the viewer may not want to confront but is suddenly compelled to do so. Presenting these two innovative painters in our new relay-format auction provides a global context within which their work can be viewed.

Holehenge, the ceremonial site discovered buried next to Stonehenge

June 26, 2020 – Via artnet.com

Stonehenge – via visitbritain.com

Recently, the largest ceremonial site in the UK has been discovered buried right next to Stonehenge. This site surrounds the walls of Durrington and has been called “Holehenge”. The ancient stone rings at Stonehenge remain a great mystery even today. But now it’s joined by a new mystery very close to its walls. Now archaeologists have found an even bigger prehistoric ring of wells 16 feet deep and 33 feet wide just two miles from Stonehenge.

The discovery of such a find has been made possible by a group of experts in non-invasive geophysical surveys and remote sensing with specialists in British prehistory and landscape archaeology, who have worked in collaboration with archaeologists from the University of Bradford in West Yorkshire, England.

Vince Gaffney, president of the School of Archaeological and Forensic Sciences of the university’s Faculty of Life Sciences, said in a declaration “The area around Stonehenge is among the most studied archaeological landscapes on earth and it is remarkable that the application of new technology can still lead to the discovery of a prehistoric structure so massive that it is now significantly larger than any comparative prehistoric monument we know of in Britain, at least.

To carry out this work, the group worked in the empty spaces around Stonehenge and used remote sensing technology to carry out the studies to finally find about 20 prehistoric wells. The work is still in progress and the experts believe that the number of wells to be discovered may increase to 30.

The purpose of the site is still mysterious and the dating of the surrounding sediment by radiocarbon using precision cores suggests that the wells were dug around 2500 BC. The team has published its findings in the Internet journal Archaeology.

“It demonstrates the importance of Durrington Walls Henge, the complexity of the monumental structures within the Stonehenge landscape and the ability and desire of the Neolithic communities to record their cosmological belief systems in ways and at a scale that we had never previously anticipated,” Gaffney said.

Museum Cocktails, art-inspired libations to make at home

June 26, 2020 – Via artnews.com

Joseph Mallord William Turner, Harbor of Dieppe: Changement de Domicile, 1826 HENRY CLAY FRICK BEQUEST

After the long closure caused by the coronavirus, there are still many museums that are closed and others that are starting to announce reopening dates. New York museums have been organizing digital happy hours as a way to connect with their audiences. According to some museum officials, a cocktail party can offer a deeper understanding of a work of art.

Some museum officials have even been encouraged to invent new cocktails inspired by the works in their collections and looking at the bartender’s books for drinks to complement the art in question. The museum that takes its bartending art seriously is the Frick Collection in New York.

Their Friday night YouTube program, “Cocktails with a Curator” is a 15-minute look at a single work from the museum’s collection, paired with a thematically relevant, often little-known libation. They add to this, too, a non-alcoholic variation, for those who are not alcoholic beverage lovers.

The cocktail paired with J. M. W. Turner’s Harbor in Dieppe is a lethal concoction, supposedly administered to the women of Dieppe, France, whose husbands had been lost at sea. This was known as Widow’s Kiss (reproduced above).

Widow’s Kiss – The Frick Collection, New York

1½ oz. Calvados
½ oz. Bénédictine D.O.M. liqueur
½ oz. Yellow Chartreuse liqueur
2 dashes Angostura bitters
1 mint leaf

Combine the ingredients with ice and stir.
Strain into a chilled champagne coupe.

Mocktail recipe available here.

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