What Happened in Museums this Week?

What Happened in Museums This Week? May 25 – 31

6 Rare Andy Warhol Prints Donated to ASU Art Museum

Andy Warhol’s iconic works have taught generations about expression, experimentation and the role of commercialization in popular culture. Now, six of his works will illuminate generations to come at the ASU Art Museum.

The free installation is on display now through the end of September in the lobby of the downtown Tempe museum, and the prints will remain as a permanent addition to the ASU collection. To read more, click here.

Australian Museum Returns First Nazi-Looted Art Piece to Heirs of Original Jewish Owner

The National Gallery of Victoria, in Melbourne, Australia, agreed to return a portrait in their collection to the heirs of its original Jewish owner, marking the county’s first successful Nazi restitution claim, the BBC reported on Friday.

Two unnamed South African sisters claimed they inherited the portrait as part of the estate of Jewish industrialist Richard Semmel, whose art collection was bequeathed to their grandmother, his companion after the death of his wife. Their lawyer said they had been searching for the painting for a decade. To read more, click here.

Belgian Police Look Into Assassination Theory in Jewish Museum Killings

Belgian police are investigating whether the killing of three people, including an Israeli couple, at the Jewish museum in Brussels on Saturday was a targeted assassination or a random antisemitic attack.

On Tuesday, federal authorities quickly denied media reports that a suspect had been arrested, and the Israelis – Emmanuel and Mira Riva, who were in their 50s – were buried in Tel Aviv. The Haaretz newspaper speculated that they may have been murdered because of connections to Israel’s secret services. To read more, click here.

Detroit’s Creditors Want Entire Art Museum Collection to be Fair Game

Creditors in Detroit’s municipal bankruptcy have engineered a new appraisal aimed at putting the Detroit Institute of Arts‘ entire collection in play as a possible chip to maximize the amount the city will be obligated to ante up for debt repayment.

The Detroit News reports that, at some creditors’ behest, the city’s bankruptcy managers have begun trying to place a value on the museum’s entire 66,000-piece collection. That’s quite an escalation from a previous appraisal of only about 1,700 works that the DIA had bought with city funds. To read more, click here.

Higgins Armory Museum to Host Public Auction of Remaining Items on June 14

Worcester residents will have a chance to own a piece of the Higgins Armory Museum when an auction of items remaining in the museum is held on June 14.

“Obviously the most prized pieces in our museum have found a new home at the Worcester Art Museum,” says Suzanne Maas, interim director at Higgins in a statement. “What remains are a number of non-collection items that have great value to many people. Some are related to arms and armor, while others are simply practical pieces that may be put to good use elsewhere. However, all have a unique history in that they were once a part of the Higgins Armory Museum.” To read more, click here.

Items in 9/11 Museum Gift Shop to be Scrutinized by Victims’ Families

That cringeworthy U.S.-shaped cheese platter with hearts marking the spots where Al Qaeda terrorists crashed the hijacked planes has been yanked from the gift shop at the 9/11 museum.

And the rest of the items on sale at the National September 11 Memorial & Museum are going to be subjected to a smell test by relatives of the victims who sit on the board. To read more, click here.

Ohio Groundbreaking Set for Air Force Museum Add

Groundbreaking ceremonies are set for a new building at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force in southwestern Ohio.

Air Force Secretary Deborah Lee James is among officials planning to take part June 3 at the museum near Dayton. The ceremony isn’t open to the public. To read more, click here.

San Francisco Offers Waterfront Site to George Lucas for Museum

San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee has offered George Lucas 2.3 acres of waterfront real estate in hopes that the director will locate a proposed arts and culture museum in the city, a spokeswoman for the mayor’s office said on Friday.

The proposal, which was sent to Lucas on Thursday, heats up a competition between Chicago and San Francisco for Lucas’s planned art museum, where he will house his personal collection. To read more, click here.

The Tiananmen Square Museum That’s Shocking China’s Tourists

The staff at a new museum in Hong Kong has all the typical qualifications required of caretakers and guides, but they also need thick skin to deal with a particularly vocal breed of haranguers. The collection is a labyrinthine exhibit about the Tiananmen protests in 1989, including photographs, video footage, and a small library pertaining to the student-led campaign. And some visitors take umbrage: “What you are doing here is shameful and greedy,” a detractor said one recent Saturday morning, speaking loudly enough for everyone inside to hear her. “You are forcing the wrong message onto the public and disrupting daily life!” To read more, click here.

What headlines caught your eye this week?

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