Art news / 29 March – 3 April

In case you missed it, our round up of five key stories from art this week.

1. Dame Zaha Hadid, the Iraqi-British architect died on Thursday 31 March, of a heart attack while she was in hospital suffering with bronchitis in Miami, where she was developing the 1000 Museum. Hadid had created some of the most iconic architectural monuments of the modern world including the London aquatics centre built for the 2012 Olympic Games, Guangzhou Opera House and the MAXXI: Italian National Museum of 21st Century Arts in Rome. She was the first woman to win the prestigious Pritzker Prize in her own right. In her address upon receiving the Pritzker Prize in 2004 she said: “Studying the revolutionary Russian work I realized how Modern architecture built upon the breakthrough achieved by abstract art as the conquest of a previously unimaginable realm of creative freedom. Art used to be re-presentation rather than creation. Abstraction opened the possibility of unfettered invention.” (via Art Net)

2. A fascinating exhibition, Art and Child, exploring the evolution of the child in painting is running at the Marmottan Monet Museum Museum in Paris. The exhibition features works of children, and their various roles in society, from the 15th century right up to the new masters of portraiture including Matisse, Picasso, Manet and Renoir. Read more on this story here.

3. The ancient UNESCO world heritage site of Palmyra, Syria, that was captured by Isil in May 2015 and partially destroyed by the group, in the belief that it’s ancient ruins were idolatrous, was recaptured by Syrian government forces this week with the help of Russian air strikes. Though there is wide-spread damage to the ruins and many of the statues, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad was quoted as saying: “Palmyra was demolished more than once through the centuries… we will restore it anew so it will be a treasure of cultural heritage for the world.” (via The Art Newspaper)

4. Students at Columbia University have had an unexpected reaction to the donation of the abstract Henry Moore sculpture Figure Reclining. More than 1,000 students have signed a petition that states: “the sculpture in front of Butler Library will disrupt an otherwise crisp, geometric, and symmetrical landscape.” A post on an administration blog stated, “The donation of this sculpture was accepted by the Committee on Art Properties and University administration over twenty years ago, with the permanent location approved more recently.” Read more on this story here.

5. A book chronicling the friendship between the surrealist painter Salvador Dalí and the doctor that Dalí called his “guardian angel”, and credited with a cure for skin cancer, Edmund Klein, has been published. Dalí & His Doctor: The Surreal Friendship Between Salvador Dalí and Dr. Edmund Klein has been written by Paul Chimera, who met Dalí and is the former publicity director of the original Dalí Museum of Beachwood, Ohio; details Klein’s award-winning cancer research while exploring the creation, cataloguing, exhibition and sale of a collection of original drawings by Dalí as payment for Klein’s private treatment of the artist. (via Art Daily)