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Bansky's mural on the wall of

‘Never Demolish’ Architects Win Pritzker, Cops Hunt Oxford Thieves, and More: Morning Links from March 17, 2021

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The Headlines

ARCHITECTURE’S TOP AWARD, THE PRITZKER PRIZE, has been awarded to the French architects Anne Lacaton and Jean-Philippe Vassal, who have won renown for their restrained, subtle approach, which is encapsulated in an often-quoted line of their 2004 “Plus” manifesto: “Never demolish, never remove or replace, always add, transform, and reuse!” Their art credits include expansions of the Palais de Tokyo in Paris and FRAC Dunkerque in northern France. “There are too many demolitions of existing buildings which are not old, which still have a life in front of them, which are not out of use,” Lacaton told Robin Pogrebin in the New York Times. Lacaton is now the sixth woman to receive the annual award, which began in 1979.

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Bansky's mural on the wall of

A YEAR AFTER THREE PRIZED PAINTINGS WERE STOLEN from Christ Church Picture Gallery in Oxford, England, police are calling on the public for help, ITV reports. “It may be that you’ve rented a storage unit to someone who you’re suspicious about,” a detective told the station, while listing the kinds of tips they’re looking for. The authorities have released closed-circuit video footage of the crime, which saw works by Anthony van DyckAnnibale Carracci, and Salvatore Rosa vanish into the night that are estimated at £10 million (about $13.9 million). Should museums publicly report the theft of objects in their care? In the New York TimesJenny Gross spoke with experts about the intricacies of searching for stolen art.

The Digest

Here it comes! Powerhouse blue-chip gallery Almine Rech is throwing its hat into the NFT ring, minting limited-edition tokens with artist César Piette. Prices range from $250 to $799. [Flash Art]

Collectors Adrian Cheng and John Dodelande have a new book coming out with the tantalizing title Chinese Art: The Impossible Collection, featuring works that they admire. It’s being published by Assouline, which also released Franck Giraud and Philippe Ségalot’s 2009 The Impossible Collection: The 100 Most Coveted Artworks of the Modern Era. [Hong Kong Tatler]

Bonhams is set to sell 11 Yayoi Kusama pieces that the famed Japanese artist gave to her doctor Teruo Hirose as payment for medical treatment. Hirose died in 2019, aged 93. [Artnet News]

Members of the Association of Art Museum Directors voted 91 to 88 against extending a relaxation of its rules that allows institutions to use some funds from deaccessioned work to cover care of their collections. The policy easing is set to expire in about a year. Forty-two members did not vote. [The Art Newspaper]

Marina Abramovic is teaming up with file-sharing service WeTransfer to bring her Abramovic Method into the digital realm. Five other artists, including Ana Prvacki and Terence Koh, will be involved in the project. [The Art Newspaper]

Artist Judy Chicago is concerned that the cancellation of her smoke sculpture at Desert X may lead to the scuttling of another smoke piece she has planned for the de Young museum in San Francisco. The city’s parks department is currently considering whether to grant a permit for the display. [Los Angeles Times]

The Banksy that appeared on a wall outside Reading Prison in the United Kingdom has been partially obscured by the tag of the street artist’s late rival, King Robbo. [Reading Live]

The Kicker

A PAINTING BY SUPERSTAR SINGER ED SHEERAN raffled to support the Cancer Campaign in Suffolk in the United Kingdom has raised £51,000 (about $70,800). The lucky winner of the work—which has a not unimpressive Jackson Pollock vibe to it—is a Vermont woman named Claire Faynor, 22. She is pretty excited about her new piece, which is titled Splash Planet, and told BBC News that she wants to dedicate a room in her home to the singer of “Shape of You” (5.22 billion views and counting!). “I was trying to push that through with my roommates in the first place, and now I have even more reason,” she said. She has a point. [BBC News]

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

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