Fine Art

As Florida Reels From Hurricane Irma, Museums Have Been Spared Its Devastating Wrath.

Early reports suggest that art institutions may have come through the storm relatively unscathed.

After battering the Caribbean and Florida last week and over the weekend, Hurricane Irma has been downgraded to a tropical storm, as it now moves inland toward parts of Georgia, Alabama, Tennessee, and the Carolinas. Despite the terrifying strength of the storm—which has reportedly killed 40 people and left millions without power—art museums and organizations in Florida seem to have escaped relatively unscathed, early reports suggest.

Irma first made landfall in the continental US on Sunday morning as a category four hurricane in the Florida Keys. Museums in the Keys include the Key West Art & Historical Society, the Ernest Hemingway Home & Museum, and the Key West outpost of Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Odditorium.

“Reports are very, very preliminary,” Key West Art & Historical Society executive director Michael F. Gieda said, noting that it was not yet safe to conduct a full inspection of the property. “Overall, the society’s museums appear to be okay and intact. Minimal damages to the buildings with the exception of some damaged windows.… Power is out so climate control is an issue.”

The storm made a second landfall later Sunday afternoon, on Marco Island, off the coast of Naples in Collier County. Irma then moved north toward Tampa, home to the Salvador Dali Museum and the Tampa Museum of Art. As of press time, neither institution had responded to artnet News’s request for comment.

Collier County Museums has announced that all local institutions, including the Marco Island Historical Society, will be closed Monday and Tuesday, instructing the public to follow the county emergency website for additional updates. Artis—Naples, home of the Baker Museum and the Naples Philharmonic, also closed in advance of the storm.

“Initial assessments are that Irma was kind to us, and we are grateful for all of the efforts made in our pre-storm preparations,” Artis—Naples CEO Kathleen van Bergen, noting that artist Arik Levy was able to personally oversee precautions taken to protect the work in his solo show, which opened September 5. “As far as we can tell after an initial assessment, the five buildings on our campus fared well. Until full power is restored, a complete inspection is not possible, nor is a return to our scheduled cultural activities.”

The storm was initially forecast to make landfall further east, which would have placed Miami directly in the path of the storm. Despite avoiding a direct hit, Miami was still subject to heavy flooding, particularly in the downtown Brickell neighborhood, where the streets became rushing rivers.

There was also flooding in the basement of the Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, a historic mansion in Coconut Grove. “The good news is there are no art collections stored” in the affected areas, museum spokesperson Luis Espinoza told the Miami Herald.

Ahead of the storm’s arrival in the US, the Bass Museum of Art, ICA Miami, the Pérez Art Museum Miami (PAMM), and the Norton Museum of Art in West Palm Beach, took precautions and closed their doors. The city and its arts institutions will play host to the international art world come December, during the annual Art Basel in Miami Beach art fair, the centerpiece of Miami Art Week.

“PAMM sustained no damage to the building, and suffered no flooding,” the museum’s associate director of marketing, Alexa Ferra, noting that all PAMM employees were safe following the storm. “The roof held well, and there was no problem with the hurricane-resistant windows.  Surge from Biscayne Bay did not reach the building, even at high tide.”

“Safety and security are top priorities at PAMM, and storm preparation is something we focus on year-round,” added CFO Mark Rosenblum. “Every spring, we fine tune our policies and procedures, and implement training so we are ready for the hurricane season.”

Down in Miami Beach, Bass director Silvia Karman Cubiñá reports that “the museum is in the process of assessing the extent of Irma’s impact. We are thankful that our staff is safe and accounted for and our thoughts are with those who are still battling the aftermath of the storm.”

Although Miami appears to have escaped the worst of the devastation—as of press time the Norton and ICA had not returned artnet News’s request for comment—the hurricane carved a path of destruction earlier in the week, striking parts of the northeast Caribbean as a category five storm, the strongest ever seen in the Atlantic.

Irma ravaged the Bahamas, where the National Art Gallery of the Bahamas plans to reopen on Tuesday after it somehow “weathered the storm without incident,” according to chief curator Holly Bynoe.

In a turn of good fortune, the storm’s eye ultimately bypassed museum’s New Providence location, sparing it the worst. “Our national collection and all of our assets are in good order and good standing,” Bynoe wrote. “I am hoping that other institutions in the Dominican Republic, Cuba and Florida, fared as well as we did.”

Others local institutions include the Antiquities, Monuments and Museum Corporation National Museum of the Bahamas, the Heritage Museum of the Bahamas, and the Junkanoo World Museum & Arts Centre Ltd. Whether they fared as well as NAGB is still uncertain. Two of the museums could not be reached for comment, and the third did not immediately respond.

Beyond the Bahamas, Hurricane Irma also barreled through Puerto Rico, home of the Museo de Arte de Puerto Rico in Santurce, and through Cuba, home of the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes in Havana. Earlier in the week, at its most violent, the storm plowed through Antigua and Barbuda, St. Martin and Saint Barthélemy, Anguilla, the Leeward Islands, Turks and Caicos, the Dominican Republic and Haiti, and the Virgin Islands, leaving devastation in its wake.

Irma marked the second category four hurricane to make landfall in the continental US this year, following Hurricane Harvey, which caused severe flooding in Texas in late August. It is the first recorded instance that two storms of such magnitude have descended on the country in a single hurricane season.


Source: Sarah Cascone, 

Happy Labor Day Weekend

Gallery Art Wishes You a Happy Labor Day Weekend

Fake City Workers Steal Paris Art Caught on Camera

Parisian thieves donning city worker outfits remove Invader pieces from city walls in an attempt to sell them on the art market.

Parisian thieves donning city worker outfits remove Invader pieces from city walls in an attempt to sell them on the art market. Photos from Twitter.

Welcome to the world of street art. Intrigue. Arrests. And invaders from space.

The street artist, Invader, has a mission. He calls it his “Space Invasion”. His mission is simple: To release art from the institutions of museums and galleries while racking up points in the process.

Each piece he puts up in a city gives him points in his artistic invasion. He increases his score by revisiting cities and finding more locations to install his artwork. He currently has over 3520 invaders in 74 cities across the globe. He chose the characters of the game Space Invaders because they symbolize our present age of computers and digital technology. While police don’t always give him issues, there are some countries he can not enter because he is a wanted man.

Lately his work has been making a big impact on the auction scene—one piece recently sold for $250,000—and thieves are getting bold about hunting down his work and removing it from walls. Just last week two Parisian thieves boldly donned city worker uniforms and pulled 15 of his installations from the streets of Paris. Angry citizens who know and love Invader’s work, captured them with camera phones and social media posts, not believing their ridiculous story about being city workers, especially since they were traveling around in a Mercedes Benz—evidence that they must have already cashed in on some of their pilfered street art.

If you’d like to own an Invader work of art and don’t want to don a fake city worker’s outfit to get one, then check out this piece in our gallery.

If you’d like to see a really cool video of Invader’s artwork being launched into space and majestically falling into the Everglades near Miami check out this video. Sorry, it’s in French!


“Max Agents Stole Millions!” Daughter Alleges

Peter Max, Umbrella Man At Sea

Peter Max, Umbrella Man At Sea

The daughter of ailing psychedelic painter Peter Max claims her dad’s agents have taken over his art company — with one stealing $3 million in insurance payments and the other ensconcing himself at the artist’s St. John’s vacation home, according to a new lawsuit.

Libra Max owns 40 percent of her dad’s art company, ALB. Her older brother, Adam Max controls another 40 percent and their father Peter has the remaining share.

The 79-year-old artist​ ​– whose works hang in the Whitney Museum of American Art and The Museum of Modern Art​ ​– has Alzheimer’s Disease, his daughter says in the suit against her brother.

Libra, 50, claims Adam, 52, has allowed their father’s agent Larry Moskowitz and an accountant named Robert Frank to “enrich themselves at the expense of ALP and the Max family.” ​​

First, from 2012 to 2014 Moskowitz allegedly gave Frank $3 million from $15 million in insurance payments over artwork damaged in Hurricane Sandy.

Then at the end of 2015 Moskowitz “unleashed a tirade of threats at Libra Max when she asked him to temporarily vacate Peter Max’s Virgin Island home (where, apparently, he had taken up residence) so that she and her father could spend Christmas and New Years there,” according to the Manhattan Supreme Court suit.


Flag With Heart

“Because of the ferocity of the threats and invective leveled against her by Moskowitz and Frank, Libra Max did not take her father to his own home in St. John,” she says in court papers.

Libra’s suing her brother for access to the company’s books and records and to regain control of the business.

But her brother’s attorney, Eric Hellige, said​,​ “Adam has been cooperating with Libra and has provided her much of the information that she’s asked for already and will continue to cooperate to provide her whatever additional information she’s looking for.”

Moskowitz’s lawyer, Michael C. Barrows, called the allegations “incendiary” and “not true.”

“Mr. Moskowitz with the help of Adam Max has done wonderful things for the company,” Barrows said.

Frank called the suit “ridiculous.” He said the $3 million in insurance proceeds were to cover outstanding payments for his accounting work.

The Max family has a history of legal drama. Peter’s decades-younger second wife Mary sued her stepson Adam in 2015 claiming he stole $4.3 million worth of paintings from her.

Mary filed suit after Adam lost a bid to have his dad removed from the couple’s Riverside Drive home where the son claimed his stepmom was trying to kill her husband. Both sides denied the allegations.

Peter Max is a world renowned artist that has touched the hearts and lives of millions. Here at Gallery Art we are honored to be able to show multiple Peter Max works, starting from the 1970’s until today. 


Artist: Peter Max                               Title: Grammy

Medium: Acrylic on Canvas            Size: 48″ x 36″

 Edition: Original                           Year: 2002

Description: Hand signed on front by the artist. Studio stamp on verso. Artwork is in excellent condition. Certificate of Authenticity included.


ashley-botTo view these pieces, more of our Peter Max collection, and the rest of our Fine Art Collections, please visit



Source:  Julia Marsh

A Quick Look at Ten of Our Featured Artists

Dealer Finds $100 Million Stolen DeKooning. Gives it back.

“Woman-Ochre,” a painting by abstract expressionist Willem de Kooning, has been returned to the University of Arizona Museum of Art. (Photo: Bob Demers/UANews)

Let’s imagine for a second that you are an antiques dealer. You get calls all the time about liquidating estates and you were just on one of those calls. You see some average stuff but you also see a wrinkled old canvas behind a closet door that you think looks pretty cool. It has some nice colors and an interesting abstract composition. It kind of looks like the owner of the estate must have been a painter and, he wasn’t half bad. So you say “What the heck,” and put $2000 into the investment and maybe you’ll make a little profit from some of the baubles and trinkets you just bought but you’ll get a cool painting in the deal— and isn’t that what it’s all about? So you go to your shop, unload your truck, put the wrinkled canvas into a corner and hope some people come in to check out your stuff. A few people do come in and when you show them the canvas, more than one casually mentions that the painting looks an awful lot like a Willem de Kooning.

The idea of it seems cool enough but, really guys, c’mon. You continue about your day, dusting off your books and leather bound chairs when something really strange happens. One of your customers comes back a few hours later and, with a serious look on his face, offers you $200,000 for the wrinkled canvas. He can get the cash by the end of the day. Now you’re wondering. So you go online, find an article about a Willem de Kooning that way, way back in 1985 was stolen from the University of Arizona Museum of Art and holy Ravioli!, it looks exactly like the one you just bought. And not just that! Its estimated value is, oh, about $100,000,000. Yeah, thats right. EIGHT zeros!

A tingle goes down your spine.

You can hear the distant sound of cars on the street outside. The birds are chirping, the sun is shining, the sky is blue and there you are, all alone, with a painting you just discovered is absolutely worth $100 million and is also absolutely stolen. Maybe you start to wonder how many people know you have it? Who did you tell? Where can you go to disappear so no one will ever trace the sale of a stolen painting back to you?” And then you stop yourself and vigorously shake your head. You have a stolen Willem de Kooning painting worth $100,000,000 and you know that the only right thing to do is give it back.

In 1985, a man and a woman, on a cool winter day in Arizona, strolled into the University of Arizona Museum of Art and, while the attractive middle-aged lady chatted up the security guard, her younger male partner went to the Museum’s second floor, sliced a Willem de Kooning painting out of it’s frame, rejoined his partner and they departed. The painting was missing for 31 years.

Just two weeks ago,“Woman-Ochre,” by Willem de Kooning was returned to the University of Arizona Museum of Art by an antiques dealer from New Mexico who happened upon it at an estate sale.

If you enjoy abstract paintings like our honest antiques dealer, then check out our gallery.

For a more factual account of this story, go here.

‘We found it rolled up in a tube’: Alice Cooper discovers Warhol classic after 40 years


Rock star Alice Cooper has found an Andy Warhol masterpiece that could be worth millions “rolled up in a tube” in a storage locker, where it lay forgotten for more than 40 years.

The work in question is a red Little Electric Chair silkscreen, from Warhol’s Death and Disaster series. Never stretched on a frame, it sat in storage alongside touring artifacts including an electric chair that Cooper used in the early 70’s as part of his ghoulish stage show.

According to Shep Gordon, the singer’s longtime manager, Cooper and Warhol became friends at the famous Max’s Kansas City venue in New York City.

“It was back in 72 and Alice had moved to New York with his girlfriend Cindy Lang,” Gordon stated, “Andy was kind of a groupie, and so was Alice. They loved famous people. So they started a relationship, and they loved to hang out.”

Warhol went to see a concert in which Cooper feigned electrocution in a chair identical to the one in Warhol’s print. The image is based on a press photograph from 13 January 1953 of the death chamber at Sing Sing prison. 

Lang, a model and Interview magazine cover star who died in January at the age of 67, had the idea to approach the artist’s studio and purchase one of the 1964 canvases.

“Alice says he remembers having a conversation with Warhol about the picture. He thinks the conversation was real, but he couldn’t put his hand on a Bible and say that it was.”

The artwork entered Cooper’s touring equipment collection, and disappeared. Then, four years ago, Gordon was having dinner with a Los Angeles art dealer. She mentioned how much a Warhol had recently fetched at auction. Gordon mentioned that Cooper had had a Little Electric Chair. Bloom advised him to find it.

“Alice’s mother remembered it going into storage,” he said. “So we went and found it rolled up in a tube.”

the top price paid for a Little Electric Chair is $11.6m, at Christie’s in November 2015 for a green version dated 1964, and he didn’t want anything of such value in the house. So it went back into storage.

Without authentication – it is unsigned – Cooper’s Warhol is unlikely to make quite so much should it ever come to auction. The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts stopped authenticating work in 2011, after a protracted legal dispute over a self-portrait owned by a British collector, that the authentication panel refused to endorse, rendering it valueless.

Gordon took Cooper’s small canvas, which measures 22 x 28in, to a Warhol expert. He believes the provenance of the silkscreen checks out and has dated it to 1964 or 1965.  “It looks right, and the story just makes too much sense. It’s hard to appreciate how little Warhol’s art was worth at the time. Twenty-five hundred was the going rate at the time. Why would Andy give him a fake?”

Gordon said the singer had changed his mind and was now considering hanging his Little Electric Chair in his home, when he comes off tour at the end of the year.


To view more Andy Warhol and other in our Fine Art Collections please visit GallArt.comashley-bot


Artist: Andy Warhol

Title: Conspiracy Means To Breathe Together

Medium: Offset Lithograph

Size: 34″ x 22″

Year: 1969

Description: Warhol created his first screenprint of an electric chair in 1963. Later in the sixties he returned to the imagery for a series of ‘Little Electric Chairs’, to which this image belongs. The source photograph was published in 1953 and shows the chair in New York State’s Sing Sing prison. Used for the final time in 1963, Warhol remarked that it seemed like a typically American way to go. The title of this group exhibition for charity at LoGuidice Gallery works especially well with Warhol’s image. Conspiracy derives from the Latin word ‘conspirare’, which literally means to breathe together. The exhibition organisers refer to the fact that this chair was used to execute American communists Ethel and Julius Rosenberg for conspiracy to commit espionage in 1953. Artwork is in excellent condition. Certificate of Authenticity included.



Article Source: Edward Helmore

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