Uffizi Plots Bold Art-Sharing Program, Boy Scouts to Sell Norman Rockwells, and More: Morning Links from March 3, 2021

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The Headlines

‘ART CAN’T SURVIVE ON BIG GALLERIES ALONE,’ Eike Schmidt, the director of Florence’s Uffizi Gallery, told CNN. He’s pursuing a plan for the Italian museum to send some of its works to smaller museums and exhibition sites in the surrounding region of Tuscany, to create jobs, draw attention to lesser-known areas, and relieve a potential tourist crunch once travel resumes. The project is called Uffizi Diffusi—“scattered Uffizi”—and will include at least 60 sites. Livorno Today reports that one project could involve Napoleon-related works being installed at the Forte Falcone on the island of Elba, to which the French leader was briefly exiled. The Uffizi also recently launched a cooking show, which asks Tuscan chefs to cook based on a work in its collection. Dario Cecchini, for one, made a gargantuan steak in a tribute to a Jacopo Chimenti still life. The crisply edited episodes “succeed in satisfying, however fleetingly, the desire to escape over the Alps,” Thomas Marks writes in Apollo.

THE BOY SCOUTS OF AMERICA HAS PROPOSED SELLING ITS COLLECTION of Norman Rockwell works to help establish a $300 million fund to compensate victims of sexual abuse, according to the Guardian, which reports that more than 85,000 onetime scouts have filed claims against the group. The plan was made public in a bankruptcy filing. The BSA owns more than 50 Rockwells, many of which appeared on the cover of its Boys Life magazine. The Rockwell market has been booming in recent years, with his 1951 Saying Grace going for $46 million at Sotheby’s in 2013 to George Lucas, an auction record for the artist. Some involved in litigation against the Boy Scouts have said that the group’s compensation efforts do not go far enough. “Considering the enormity of the problem, are they taking care of survivors as they should?” one lawyer told the Los Angeles Times. “I don’t think so.”

The Digest

Alan Bowness, who led the Tate Gallery in London from 1980 to 1988 and helped create the Turner Prize for contemporary art, died at the age of 93. [ARTnews]

After more than 20 years at the helm of the Museum of Contemporary Art Australia in Sydney, its director, Elizabeth Ann Macgregor, will depart. [The Sydney Morning Herald]

A striking (and rarely seen) portrait from about 1932 by the Hungarian-Indian artist Amrita Sher-Gil will be offered later this month at Christie’s, where it’s pegged to bring in $2.8 million. Sher-Gil currently holds the record for an Indian woman artist at auction: $2.92 million. [The Art Newspaper]

Photographer LaToya Ruby Frazier, who trains an unflinching eye on inequality, was profiled by Zoë Lescaze. “I am showing these dark things about America because I love my country and countrymen,” Frazier said. “When you love somebody, you tell them the truth. Even if it hurts.” [T: The New York Times Style Magazine]

Forget Gamestop stock. James Tarmy points out that the best way to understand the sudden boom in NFT artworks may be the photography market, where images that can be endlessly reproduced are sold in limited editions. [Bloomberg]

The curator Valentina Guidi Ottobri has transformed her home in Grasse in the south of France into an artist’s residency and exhibition space, displaying work by Hassan Hajjaj, Hannah Simpson, and many more. [T: The New York Times Style Magazine]

A new computer game, The Architect: Paris, lets users redesign the French capital city in intricate detail. [Rock Paper Shotgun]

Naomi Fry came out swinging in support of Juergen Teller’s hotly debated recent photographs of celebrities for W magazine. The images are “disrespectful to the very notion of stardom,” Fry writes, arguing that “these weren’t the kind of photos that you’d post on Instagram; they were the kind of pictures that a friend might take of you, upload to their story, and then tag you in.” [The New Yorker]

The Kicker

THE ROW, THE FASHION LABEL STARTED BY ACTRESSES and designers Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen, has a new store in London designed by Annabelle Selldorf, the architect of numerous blue-chip galleries, New York reports in an in-depth story on the brand. But that is not their only art connection. For a runway show one season, they borrowed 13 sculptures from the Noguchi Museum in New York. “We’re still benefiting or suffering from it, depending on your point of view,” Dakin Hart , the museum’s senior curator, said. “The museum still has people coming through staging ad hoc fashion shoots with friends and a few costume changes—those are challenging sometimes.” On the plus side, “It relit the pilot light of interest in Noguchi in the fashion industry,” he told Matthew Schneier[The Cut/New York].

Thank you for reading. We’ll see you tomorrow.

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