Gene Simmons: ‘My eyesight’s good. My schmeckle works. What else do you want?’

Gene Simmons: ‘My eyesight’s good. My schmeckle works. What else do you want?’

ART WORLD NEWS
In an anonymous building somewhere in North Hollywood, a handful of roadies stride about tuning guitars in front of an elaborate drum kit bearing the legendary logo: “KISS.” The instruments fall silent in unison to announce the entrance of the band’s hulking 6ft 2in bassist Gene Simmons. The 72-year-old wears leather trousers, an embroidered denim shirt, dark sunglasses and a black baseball cap illustrated with a cartoon dollar bag. His most recognisable appendage, that famous seven-inch reptilian tongue, is hidden completely behind a square of black cotton. Forget Frank Sinatra with a cold: Gene Simmons is wearing a face mask.Simmons is taking pandemic precautions seriously, and with good reason. Within a week of our meeting, Kiss frontman Paul Stanley, the band’s only other original member, will test positive for Covid,…
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David Ross and the Royal Opera House’s Hockney sale

David Ross and the Royal Opera House’s Hockney sale

ART WORLD NEWS
When Carphone Warehouse billionaire and major Tory donor David Ross suddenly quit as chair of the Royal Opera House in May, just months into a four-year role, industry insiders were stunned. Now The Independent can reveal the story behind the scenes, with some Royal Opera House board members said to be “furious” at what they believe to be “disgraceful behaviour by Mr Ross” in which the 56-year-old allegedly secretly sought favourable payment terms at the expense of the public organisation he was meant to be steering towards financial recovery. It began in July 2020 when the announcement was made that the new chair of the board of trustees would be Mr Ross, who had controversially facilitated accommodation for Boris Johnson during a £15,000 holiday on the island of Mustique over…
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‘These are the traces of this tumult’: The precious artworks looted by the Nazis

‘These are the traces of this tumult’: The precious artworks looted by the Nazis

ART WORLD NEWS
In 1940, Jewish art dealer Paul Rosenberg fled Nazi-occupied Paris for America. Before he departed, he stored his most valuable paintings in a bank vault in Libourne, France.His art collection, which included Henri Matisse paintings, was seized by the Nazis. They took the paintings and stored them at the Jeu de Paume in Paris, a Nazi storage depot. Then, they broke into Rosenberg’s Paris art gallery and turned it into the Study of the Jewish Question – only to host anti-Semitic exhibitions.The artworks were finally returned to Rosenberg’s heirs in 2015. But this is just one example of how the artworks were stolen and traveled through Nazi-occupied Europe before being recovered by collectors and historians both during and after the war.Afterlives: Recovering the Lost Stories of Looted Art, a new…
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Sold to Hitler: What constitutes art sales under duress?

Sold to Hitler: What constitutes art sales under duress?

ART WORLD NEWS
In 1938, Jewish department-store magnate Max Emden, who left Germany before the Nazis took power, sold three city views by 18th-century painter Bernardo Bellotto to an art buyer for Hitler.The works, which were with Emden in Switzerland, were destined for the “Führermuseum” that Hitler planned for Linz, Austria, but never built.During the Second World War, the paintings were hidden in an Austrian salt mine. Officers of the Allied Monuments, Fine Arts and Archives Unit — known as the Monuments Men — recovered them at the end of the war, and two of the Bellottos were returned to the German government. The third, The Marketplace at Pirna, was mistakenly sent to the Netherlands.In 2019, Germany returned those two works to Emden’s heirs after the government’s advisory commission on Nazi-looted art determined…
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Essex council hires security to guard Banksy-style mural

Essex council hires security to guard Banksy-style mural

ART WORLD NEWS
A council in Essex has put security at the site of a new artwork it suspects is by the mysterious artist Banksy.The street art, which features a boy holding a fishing rod with a blue face mask attached to it, was first spotted early on Wednesday (18 August) on the sea wall at Stone Pier in Harwich.A spokesman for Tendring District Council said: “We immediately put security in place and are taking further steps to protect this artwork as we await confirmation that it is indeed the latest piece of the artist’s ‘Spraycation’ in East Anglia.”Throughout August, 10 different murals by Banksy have appeared in various locations across Norfolk and Suffolk, in what the artist has called “A Great British Spraycation”.Banksy, who remains anonymous, is yet to claim the new…
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Banksy mural covered up over insensitivity fears after child’s trampoline death

Banksy mural covered up over insensitivity fears after child’s trampoline death

ART WORLD NEWS
A mural designed by street artist Banksy has been covered up amid fears it could be seen as insensitive following the death of a child nearby.The artwork, which was left on a wall near Norfolk’s Gorleston beach, depicts two children on an inflatable dingy being launched into the air.In 2018, three-year-old Ava-May Littleboy died on the beach after an inflatable trampoline she was riding on burst.Great Yarmouth Borough council said it a statement that the decision to cover up the mural was “the right decision, respecting local people and feelings”.However, it thanked Banksy for the artwork added that the council “fully appreciate these circumstances would not have been known by the artist”.According to the council, it will be possible to restore the mural at a later date and relocate it…
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Banksy: Locals ‘appalled’ after new artwork defaced within days of appearing in Suffolk town

Banksy: Locals ‘appalled’ after new artwork defaced within days of appearing in Suffolk town

ART WORLD NEWS
Residents in the Suffolk town of Lowestoft have discovered that a new Banksy artwork has already been defaced. The mysterious graffiti artist recently confirmed he was behind new street art that appeared around England’s east coast.However, East Suffolk Council has now been forced to issue a statement after locals discovered the Lowestoft artwork, which shows a rat sitting on a deckchair, had been daubed with white paint overnight. “We are naturally appalled that someone has chosen to behave in such a selfish and mindless way, given how excited we all are by the appearance of these works here on the east coast,” the statement said.“We are, however, hopeful that this particular work can be restored, and are engaging with specialists.”The council said that prior to the rat art being confirmed…
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Banksy confirms he is behind street art along England’s east coast

Banksy confirms he is behind street art along England’s east coast

ART WORLD NEWS
Banksy has confirmed he is behind the 10 pieces of art that have appeared in towns along the east coast of England.There has been much speculation surrounding the murals which began appearing last week in Great Yarmouth, Gorleston and Crome, Norfolk, and Lowestoft and Oulton Broad in Suffolk.The first of the murals featured a couple appearing to dance on a bus shelter accompanied by a man playing the accordion, and appeared in Great Yarmouth on Friday.It was followed by an arcade claw-machine hanging over a bench in Gorleston, and a child holding a crowbar against a wall in Lowestoft.Banksy claimed responsibility for the artwork he titled A Great British Spraycation on his Instagram page, with a video showing a behind-the-scenes look at their creation.Other pieces included a scavenging seagull hovering…
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Sherlock’s Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman painted by co-star Una Stubbs | The Independent

Sherlock’s Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman painted by co-star Una Stubbs | The Independent

ART WORLD NEWS
Sherlock leads Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman are appearing at the Royal Academy’s Summer Exhibition, as watercolour portraits.The popular actors, who play Holmes and John Watson respectively, were painted by their co-star Una Stubbs, with particular attention paid to Cumberbatch's striking blue eyes and curly mop of hair.Stubbs, 77, plays Mrs Hudson in the BBC detective drama and calls Cumberbatch and Freeman, who star as Holmes and John Watson respectively, “my boys”.She has had her work selected for the celebrated annual display in London after submitting the two pieces digitally along with 12,000 entries.The English actress has spoken in the past of her love for art, saying in an interview that she would like to have been a figurative painter had she not pursued acting as a career.“I would love…
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Banksy: Where have potential new artworks been spotted?

Banksy: Where have potential new artworks been spotted?

ART WORLD NEWS
A series of artworks that seemingly have been created by Banksy appeared on the east coast of England over the weekend.Spotted a short drive away from each other in Great Yarmouth, Lowestoft and Gorleston between Friday (6 August) and Sunday (8 August), the works are created in Banksy’s trademark style and are signed with his name.However, the elusive artist is yet to lay claim to any of the works. If they are, in fact, done by him, he will likely share them on his Instagram page.LowestoftOn Friday, four murals were discovered in Lowestoft in Banksy’s style.The artwork, painted on a wall over a bridge in Nicholas Everitt Park, shows three children standing in a boat that appears to have been made out of a piece of scrap metal.A child inspects…
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