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Matta. Morphologie Psyhologique

The demolition of the Bamiyan Buddhas in 2001 was the most dramatic example of a wave of iconoclasm in Afghanistan that left no museum immune from looting. Today, with ISIS targeting and destroying ancient cultural sites in Syria and Iraq, it may be that views of these historic structures will survive only in photographs. The Getty Research Institute recently announced its acquisition of a suite of photographs that offer rare glimpses of …

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It’s been a lively couple of weeks for art related protest. In Versailles, Anish Kapoor’s sculpture has been the focus of a three-way argument that takes in neo-Nazi graffiti artists, local councillors and the artist himself. In London, protestors have ‘occupied’ the British Museum and Tate Modern’s Turbine Hall to call for an end to their relationship with BP. In Moscow, we’ve seen outraged thugs attacking contemporary art for its supposedly…

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People instinctively like record breakers: fastest man, tallest building or longest winning streak. Records provide us with a frame of reference and a benchmark by which to judge what has gone before as well as what lies ahead. Records, we are often told, are there to be broken: they can inspire greater performances and provide a target to aim for. “Les Femmes d’Alger”, sold last May at $ 179 million by Christie’s, set a new world record price for a work of art sold at auction. Prior to this sale, the previous record (after inflation) was a picture that had sold 25 years previously: Van Gogh’s “Portrait of Dr Gachet” (1890), that made $82.5 million… read more

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