Rome exhibition rekindles rumors over identity of Pintoricchio’s model

Pintoricchio’s ‘Madonna with Child’ as it exists today. Image courtesy of Capitoline Museums


ROME (AP) – For centuries, Renaissance artist Pintoricchio was practically accused of blasphemy by those who contended he used Pope Alexander VI’s young lover as the model for the Madonna in a wall painting that decorated the pontiff’s private apartment.

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Kim Kardashian West purchases Jackie Kennedy’s Cartier watch for $395K

Cartier Tank watch, a gift from Prince Stanislas Radziwill and worn by Jackie Kennedy for many years. Photo by David Cairns / Stringer / Hulton Archive / Getty Images, provided by Christie’s


NEW YORK – TMZ and People magazine say the anonymous bidder who purchased Jacqueline Kennedy’s treasured gold Cartier watch at Christie’s auction on Wednesday night was reality TV personality Kim Kardashian West. The 36-year-old star of Keeping Up With The Kardashians reportedly paid $395,000 for the classic timepiece, which was often seen on the fashionable first lady’s left wrist.

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Pollock and Motherwell exhibition opens at Nelson-Atkins July 8

Jackson Pollock, ‘Mural,’ 1943. Oil and casein on canvas, 95 5/8 x 237 3/4 inches. Gift of Peggy Guggenheim, 1959.6. University of Iowa Museum of Art, Iowa City. Reproduced with permission from The University of Iowa Museum of Art. Photograph courtesy the J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles, 2014


KANSAS CITY, MO. – Two famed American artists are featured in the focus exhibition “Pollock and Motherwell: Legends of Abstract Expressionism,” which opens at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City July 8. The exhibition includes two monumental paintings, Jackson Pollock’s Mural and Robert Motherwell’s Elegy to the Spanish Republic, No. 126. Pollock’s work is freewheeling and frenzied, while Motherwell’s painting presents a rhythmic, consistent structure.

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Kandinsky & Miro Make History, Faberge Discovery at Roadshow Taping, and More Fresh News

Helena Newman, Global Co-Head of Sotheby’s Impressionist & Modern Art Department & Chairman of Sotheby’s Europe, conducting the London auction. Image courtesy of Sotheby’s


News and updates from around the arts and auction community:

  • Wassily Kandinsky and Joan Miro made history on Wednesday night at Sotheby’s London gallery. It was the first time that three paintings sold at any London auction for more than £20 million (US$25.4 million) each. [View a slideshow and read more from Sotheby’s]
  • A Faberge floral brooch could become one of the most expensive pieces of jewelry ever appraised on Britain’s Antiques Roadshow. While the program’s executive producer didn’t want to disclose all of the details about its background, as it would spoil the surprise for viewers, he revealed that it’s “one of the most significant finds” in the Antiques Roadshow’s 40-year history. [Read more from the Daily Mail]
  • An item billed as the world’s greatest antique candy jar will be on display at the 40th annual Tulsa Antique Advertising and Bottle Show this Saturday. The 3-1/2 ft. tall candy vessel is a one-of-a-kind item that was made in the 1920s as a promotional item for Chicago’s Bunte Brothers Candy Company. Amazingly, it’s still sealed, with its original contents intact. [Read more from the Tulsa World]
  • Letters written by Albert Einstein about God, Israel and physics sold for nearly $210,000 at a Jerusalem auction on Tuesday. The top seller was a missive about God’s creation of the world. Eight letters, written in English between 1951 and 1954 and signed by Einstein, were offered by the auction house, which initially estimated their combined value at $31,000-$46,000. [Read more from the Economic Times]

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Heritage Auctions nabs famous collection of mystery & detective books

Dashiell Hammett’s ‘Red Harvest’ is expected to sell for $30,000 or more. Heritage Auctions image


DALLAS – Dashiell Hammett’s Red Harvest is expected to be the leading feature in the KoKo Collection, part of the Sept. 14 Rare Books Auction at Heritage Auctions. Drawing on his experience as a Pinkerton operative, Hammett’s momentous debut novel, published in 1929, defined the archetype for the literary private investigator.

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Cristóbal de Villalpando paintings make US debut at Met Museum

Cristóbal de Villalpando (c. 1649-1714), ‘Moses and the Brazen Serpent and the Transfiguration of Jesus’ (detail), 1683, oil on Canvas. Col. Propiedad de la Nación Mexicana, Secretaría de Cultura, Dirección General de Sitios y Monumentos del Patrimonio Cultural Acervo de la Catedral de Nuestra Señora de la Inmaculada Concepción, Puebla, Mexico


NEW YORK – Cristóbal de Villalpando (c. 1649–1714) emerged in the 1680s not only as the leading painter in viceregal Mexico, but also as one of the most innovative and accomplished artists in the entire Spanish world. Opening July 25 at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the exhibition “Cristóbal de Villalpando: Mexican Painter of the Baroque” features his earliest masterpiece, a monumental painting depicting the biblical accounts of Moses and the brazen serpent and the Transfiguration of Jesus, which was painted in 1683 for a chapel in Puebla Cathedral.

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Michael Jordan 1984 Olympics jersey auctioned for record $274K

Jersey worn at the 1984 Olympics (LA) by then-Team USA member Michael Jordan. Sold by Grey Flannel Auctions on June 22, 2017 for $294,000. Courtesy Grey Flannel Auctions


SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. – A Michael Jordan Team USA jersey worn by the basketball legend in the 1984 Olympics has sold for a world-record auction price of $273,904. The jersey was the headline item in Grey Flannel Auctions’ 2017 Summer Games Auction, which closed for bidding in the early hours of June 22.

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Purported Jackson Pollock painting withdrawn from auction

Jackson Pollock (American, 1912-1956), Untitled Gouache, 22 1/2 x 30 in., est. $10 million – $15 million. Image courtesy of J. Levine Auction & Appraisal


PHOENIX, Ariz. – The highly anticipated auction of a painting billed as a Jackson Pollock original was withdrawn shortly before it was to go up for bids on Tuesday, reports the Arizona Republic newspaper.

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$25K reward offered for antique clock stolen at Chicago antique show

The front of the jewel-encrusted Asprey Mystery Clock. Image courtesy of M.S. Rau Antiques


CHICAGO — A $25,000 reward is being offered for the return of an antique clock stolen last month from an antique show at the Merchandise Mart.

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Folk Art Baseballs, Damien Hirst Forgery Ring, and More Fresh News

Ernie Banks, baseball art by George Sosnak, 1989, India ink on manufactured baseball. Photo by Ed Pollard, courtesy of Chrysler Museum of Art


News and updates from around the arts and auction community:

  • George Sosnak spent decades as a baseball umpire. But in 1956 his talent as an amateur painter launched a second career, creating baseball-theme art on what else? Baseballs! A summer exhibition of Sosnak’s uniquely American folk art will open at the Chrysler Museum of Art in Norfolk, Va., on July 6. [Read more from the CMA]
  • New York prosecutors unveiled charges Monday against three men accused of manufacturing and selling $400,000 in fake Damien Hirst prints to art buyers around the world. One defendant appeared in court on Monday, 15 days after being released from prison for previously selling knock-off Hirst works online, prosecutors said. [Read more from AFP/Art Daily]
  • An 1,800-year-old Roman sculpture has sold for nearly one million dollars at auction. A striking artwork, the sculpture depicts a 2nd century A.D. Roman military officer, possibly a senator.  [Read more from LiveScience]
  • The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) gold plaque awarded to Pink Floyd founding member/keyboardist Richard Wright (1943-2008) denoting one million dollars in sales of the band’s The Dark Side of the Moon is headed to auction. Bidding will open at $20,000. [Read more from Rolling Stone]

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