Red Hook, Brooklyn-based Pier Glass, reopened in April of this year after the devastation of Hurricane Sandy, but some essentials such as the furnace and glory holes are still in need of replacing, and the cold shop is still in partial commission. …
Viewing: Art Market
With the highest attendance numbers since the pre-recession expo in 2007, the 20th anniversary of SOFA CHICAGO looks to have been an encouraging sign for the much-discussed future of the art market for work in glass. The official attendance figure was 34,000, a 2,000-person increase over 2012, and chats with some dealers indicated that many of those who came were there to buy. The show felt busy from the opening Thursday night cocktail party to the surprisingly crowded Sunday afternoon. This year's fair was also more filled with exhibitors, with 65 dealers, including many international galleries. With new owners taking over the well-established SOFA brand name (The Atlanta-based show management company Urban Expositions purchased the show earlier this year), many were nervous about the transition, but with founder Marc Lyman staying on as a consultant (though less visible during the show than in years past) and Donna Davies maintaining her role as fair director, it seems to have been a smooth changing of hands, with several dealers offering the GLASS Quarterly Hot Sheet very positive feedback on logistics this year.
Since 2007, when William Morris retired with great fanfare at the peak of his glass-artist career, he’s been spending his time perfecting his stone-carving technique in Hawaii. Meanwhile, his unique body of work in sculpted and blown glass that channels non-European ancient artifacts continues to attract the attention of collectors, and fetch record prices. One large installation, however, has not sold. Mazorca, originally displayed as part of his 2005 mid-career retrospective at the Museum of Glass in Tacoma has not found a buyer. The more-than-8-foot-tall cornucopia of dangling glass objects that look like earthenware, shells, carved bone, and wood, will be restrung in smaller compositions, according to Lewis Wexler, who will be showing these works at the Sculptural Objects Functional Art Fair in Chicago this November. Morris’s brief return to the glass art studio was confirmed by his studio manager, Holly Lyman in an email exchange.
Possibly a student work made while Chihuly was making the “Navajo Blanket Cylinder” series, this work was quickly discredited as an authentic Chihuly by Kate Elliott, who was one of the artists involved in the authentic groundbreaking series.
On June 19th, a 35-year-old Renton, Washington, resident named Michael Little plead guilty in federal court to wire fraud in connection with “his scheme to advertise and sell fake Chihuly artwork,” according to U.S. Attorney Jenny A. Durkan in an F.B.I. announcement. Little admitted he bought “generic glasswork and artwork over the Internet” and resold it, claiming that it was authentic Dale Chihuly, and making “at least $40,000” for counterfeit sales between 2011 and 2013, according to the release. Citing the October 4, 2013 sentencing date, investigators in the case declined to comment on details until after the legal proceedings were complete, but the appraiser who helped identify the works as fakes has shared some of the story with The GLASS Quarterly Hot Sheet to help alert others to the market in counterfeit glass artwork.
A work by William Morris entitled Sable Antelope from the “Canopic Jar” series set a new record for the artist’s work when the bidding ended at $290,500 (the price includes the buyer’s premium). The setting was the 20th Century Decorative Arts auction at Bonhams in New York City on June 14, 2013. The jar, created by Morris in 1995, sold for more than triple its pre-auction estimate, and was the standout work of the event, which also saw successful sales of Studio Glass work by Harvey Littleton ($18,750), Michael Glancy ($15,000), Paul Stankard ($22,500), Toots Zynsky ($9,375), and Stephen Rolfe Powell ($8,125) alongside decorative glass works by Gallé, Daum Nancy, Lalique, and Tiffany.
Lino Tagliapietra will receive the Visionary Award on Friday, January 25th, at the Art Palm Beach art fair. courtesy: schantz galleries, stockbridge, massachusetts
Art Palm Beach, which runs from January 24th through the 28th at the Palm Beach Convention Center in West Palm Beach, Florida, will present Lino Tagliapietra with its Visionary Award during a ceremony on Friday, January 25th. The award presentation will be followed by a public presentation and interview with Scott Indrisek, senior executive editor of Modern Painters magazine.
More than 250 works in glass will be going up for auction on Friday, October 12th, at the Westin Seattle as part of a black-tie fund-raising event that will support the educational and artistic programs at The Pilchuck Glass School for the 34th year running. In addition to the work up for live and silent bidding, there will be table centerpieces designed by Neils Cosman, who, alongside a team of 24 volunteer artists, created elegantly draped vessels that conjure up both ancient Roman glassware and the West Coast Funk movement that was a major influence in the early days of Studio Glass.
The Cini Foundation, long established as a privately-funded nonprofit research center in Venice for scholarship in art, history, and music, is expanding its purview to include Venetian glassmaking. The organization embarked on a cultural project in collaboration with Swiss-based foundation Pentagram Stiftung to promote 20th-century Venetian glass. The foundation recruited New York-based firm Selldorf Architects to refurbish the wing of a former boarding school on the CF’s San Giorgio Maggiore island headquarters, which will be home to the foundation’s new glass-only exhibition space, Le Stanze del Vetro (In English: “Rooms for Glass”). This new wing will house year-long exhibits with a focus on quality pieces that highlight significant moments in the history of Venetian glass art, and will be opening its first-ever exhibit “Carlo Scarpa. Venini 1932 – 1947“ at the end of August.
The museum world is a bastion of visual culture, and, for the most part, ethics. A sanctuary far removed from the crass commerce of the marketplace, this is where the most important artwork is bequeathed for the greater public good, where it will be available to enrich the lives of generations of citizens for years to come. Of course, museums don’t always behave according to the rules, and the work doesn’t always stay in one place. In 2010, the Guggenheim Museum in New York auctioned off the majority of an exhibition that had been on view for only two months, stirring controversy. Another breach of the wall between the gallery and museum worlds took place when high-profile art dealer Jeffrey Deitch was appointed director of the Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art (though only after he agreed to close his wildly successful New York City gallery). Which brings us to the National Liberty Museum in Philadelphia, which has raised the ire of several glass dealers with their selling of a collection the museum recently acquired from a couple from Atlanta. The Burke collection has ended up at the Liberty Museum either by purchase, by donation, or by some combination of the two—exact details are hard to come by. Reached by telephone, collector Wayne Burke would confirm to the GLASS Quarterly Hot Sheet only that his former glass art collection was now at the Liberty Museum. He declined to offer any details or comment further. Scott Patria, an art dealer currently serving as director of glass at the Liberty Museum, responded to a series of questions from the GLASS Quarterly Hot Sheet by declining to comment out of respect for the collectors’ privacy. Instead, he sent a reiteration of the museum’s mission statement and said that, “The Museum’s relationship to glass art has been and will continue to remain strong. Many collectors (and galleries) are aware of this and often will donate pieces from their collection to the Museum.” Arlene Silvers, chief operating officer of the Liberty Museum, did not respond to repeated telephone messages seeking clarification about the sale of the Burke collection.