Raphael’s Russian Painting Removed From London Salon – Jeff Koons Loses Court Battle


One of the centerpieces of the National Galleries’ long-awaited Raphael exhibition has been pulled due to the escalating war in Ukraine. The Holy Family by Raphael, which is part of the collection of the Hermitage Museum of Russia, in Saint Petersburg, will not be exhibited.

This is a direct result of the situation that arose due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine

The National Gallery in London said: “Due to the situation which arose due to the invasion of Ukraine by Russia, The Holy Family by Raphael, in the collection of the Hermitage Museum of Saint -Petersburg, is no longer included in the Credit Suisse exhibition: Raphael.

Raphael was a painter, draftsman, architect, designer and archaeologist who captured in his art the human and the divine, love, friendship, learning and power, and who gave us quintessential images of beauty and civilization: Raphael’s life was short, his work prolific and his legacy immortal.

During his brief career, which spanned just two decades, Raffaello Santi (1483-1520) shaped the course of Western culture like few artists before or since. This exhibition examines not only his famous paintings and drawings, but also his little-known works in architecture, archeology and poetry, as well as his designs for sculpture, tapestry, prints and applied arts. The aim is to do something that no Raphaël exhibition has ever done before – explore all aspects of his multimedia activity.

With over 90 exhibitions, all by Raphael except those in the media he did not practice himself but for which he provided drawings, ‘The Credit Suisse Exhibition: Raphael’ demonstrates why the artist plays such a central role in the history of Western art. .

The National Gallery’s Raphael exhibition was due to open in October 2020 but was delayed by Covid-19. It will now run from April 9 to July 31.

Jeff Koons loses another court battle

American artist Jeff Koons lost a long court battle in Italy this week. The lawsuit centered on an eight million dollar sculpture from his 1988 Banality series depicting two snakes. The artist claimed it was a fake. However, a court in Milan concluded that it was an original by the artist.

The sculpture’s provenance was in order as it was created by Milanese producer Fidia Snc for Koons’ Banality exhibition in Cologne in 1988. The work was believed to have been lost but ended up in a railway auction of lost and found for £500. Problems arose when a dealer tried to entrust the work to Christie’s. It was removed after Koons’ legal team challenged the authenticity of the work.

The Milan court upheld a previous ruling issued in 2019 which found the sculpture to be “an authorized authentic work of art by Mr. Jeffrey Koons”. Not a prototype as later claimed by the artist. They also concluded that Koons’ lawsuit was unfounded. The case is now heading to the Italian Court of Cassation.

Metropolitan Museum to withdraw $30 million worth of Picasso bronze

Metropolitan Museum to withdraw $30 million worth of Picasso bronze

The Metropolitan Museum in New York alienates a Cubist bronze bust of Pablo Picasso. He is expected to make up to $30 million for the cash-strapped, COVID-stricken institution.

Head of a Woman (Fernande), is considered one of the first Cubist sculptures. It was donated to the Met 25 years ago by May department store heiress Florene M. Schoenborn, who died in 1995. The museum also has a second cast of the work, including cosmetics heir Leonard A. Lauder recently donated.

Alienation is a controversial practice, and many prominent institutions have been sanctioned by donors and museum visitors for selling parts of their collections. However, in this case, it is a duplicate work and the funds raised will go to other acquisitions.

“The Met works on disposals annually, after careful review focused on similar or duplicate works,” Met Director Max Hollein said in a statement. “We are extraordinarily privileged to have had two casts of Picasso’s first Cubist sculpture – a masterpiece – thanks to the generosity of great patrons past and present. In addition, the funds from this sale will allow the museum to further prioritize the acquisition of exceptional major works of art.

The work will be auctioned at Christie’s in the spring.

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