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  • Jun 21, 2024

Weekly News Roundup: June 21, 2024

MAUNGARONGO TE KAWA, detail of Celestial Stargate for Invisible People, 2024. Photo by Jemma Mitchell. Courtesy the artist and Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tamaki.

Auckland Art Gallery Announces New Triennial

Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki announced on June 20 that it will launch a new triennial exhibition, “Aotearoa Contemporary,” in New Zealand. The triennial will feature 27 artists and 22 projects of diverse mediums—including painting, textile, sculpture, ceramics, and photography—special commissions of four dance works, and a talks program. Gallery director Kirsten Lacy stated that “the exhibition [will provide] ongoing representation and pathways for new artistic voices, bolstering the future resilience of New Zealand art.”  The participating artists announced so far include the ceramics and performance artist Sung Hwan Bobby Park, New Zealand art collective The Killing, and the sibling and artist duo Qianye and Qianhe Lin, among others. Supported by the local Māori hapū (sub-tribe) Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei, the Auckland Art Gallery Foundation, and the independent charitable trust Chartwell, the exhibition will run from July 6 until October 20, 2024.

Portrait of JEFFREY YIN. Courtesy Artsy.

Artsy’s Jeffrey Yin Appointed as Chief Executive

On June 17, the New York-based online art brokerage Artsy announced Jeffrey Yin as the company’s new chief executive officer (CEO). Yin currently serves as Artsy’s chief financial officer and general counsel, roles that he has occupied since 2019. During Yin’s tenure, he has been responsible for strategy and operations, along with capital formation and investor relations. Working closely with current CEO Mike Steib, Yin has helped foster revenue growth and cost discipline to support over 4,000 galleries, auction houses, art fairs, and institutions in more than 100 countries. As for Steib, he will remain in an advisory role through July before venturing to be CEO of Virginia-based media company Tegna Inc. Despite his departure, Steib will continue to serve on the board of Artsy.

Exterior of Sotheby’s in New York. Courtesy Wikimedia commons.

Sotheby’s Credit Rating Downgraded

Standard and Poor’s (S&P) Global Ratings has reduced Sotheby’s credit rating, which determines risk levels for investors, from a B to B- due to declining revenues and rising costs during the first quarter of 2024. The British auction house’s revenue dropped 22 percent after implementing a new standardized fee structure that significantly lowered the traditional buyer’s premium, sellers’ fees, and commissions. Its price of bonds also fell by around eight percent the previous month, raising questions on whether the auction house will be able to repay loans that are due in 2026. Sotheby’s debt-to-EBITDA ratio also revealed higher debt than earnings for the company. If the auction house’s fiscal situation does not improve within 12 months, the S&P rating could continue to fall. 

Portrait of LISA SLADE. Photo by Sia Duff. Courtesy Art Gallery of South Australia.

University of Melbourne Names New Hugh Ramsay Chair

Lisa Slade, assistant director of artistic programs at the Art Gallery of South Australia (AGSA), has been appointed as the Hugh Ramsay Chair in Australian Art History at the University of Melbourne. The prestigious position was founded in 2014 after an endowment from Melbourne-based writer and curator Patricia Fullerton and aims to support research into Australia Art, with an emphasis on Indigenous art history. Slade joined AGSA in 2011 as a project curator , overseeing exhibitions such “Magic Object” for the 2016 Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art, and “Sappers & Shrapnel: contemporary art and the art of the trenches.” She has also worked with the South Australian government to establish the Tarnanthi festival of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art (2015), as well as managed the presentation of the Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art. The news follows AGSA director Rhana Devenport's resignation, whose tenure will end in early July. 

Installation view of ACK main venue, 2023. Photo by Moriya Yuki. Courtesy Art Collaboration Kyoto.

Art Collaboration Kyoto Reveals Participants

The fourth Art Collaboration Kyoto (ACK) has named the 69 galleries set to participate. Hailing from 19 countries and regions with 33 first-time exhibitors, the participants will exhibit at the Kyoto International Conference Center from November 1 to 3, 2024, with a preview day on October 31. The “Gallery Collaborations” section will feature 29 galleries from North and South America, Europe, and the Asia Pacific hosted by 27 Japan-based galleries in shared booths, including Tokyo’s Mitochu Koeki Co. with London’s Annely Juda Fine Art, and Kyoto's Shibunkaku with Kurimanzutto, based in Mexico City and New York. The “Kyoto Meetings” segment will feature 13 gallery presentations with thematic ties to Kyoto, including Berlin’s neugerriemschneider, the local Oscaar Mouligne, and Paris-headquartered Perrotin. ACK also unveiled details for this year’s Public Program: titled “Resilience—for your own happiness,” the exhibition will be guest-curated by Arts Collective, a Hong Kong-based curatorial platform founded by André Chan and Chin-Yin Chong. 

(Right) Poster for the upcoming Busan Biennale and (left) exterior of the Museum of Contemporary Art Busan.

Busan Biennale 2024 Announces Artist Lineup

The anarcho-pirate-themed Busan Biennale 2024, titled “Seeing in the Dark,” announced the names of 62 artists and collectives (78 individual participants in total) for the upcoming mega-exhibition in South Korea’s second-largest city. Co-curated by Vera Mey and Philippe Pirotte, “Seeing in the Dark” will feature Korean artists ranging from the late conceptualist Yiso Bahc to octagenarian female painter Yun Suknam. Among the international participants will be artists Han Mengyun and Sriwhana Spong, activist-scholars Fred Moten and Stefano Harney with Zun Lee, Okinawan photographer Mao Ishikawa, and international collectives Taring Padi and Subversive Film Collective—both of which were participants in the controversial documenta fifteen in 2022. The Biennale will make use of locations throughout the greater metropolitan area from the Busan Museum of Contemporary Art, to the Busan Modern & Contemporary History Museum, HANSUNG1918-Busan Community Cultural Center, and Choryang House.

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