Year In Review: 2016 Art News

We’d like to take a moment to reflect on 2016 as we enter the new year. Here are 2016’s most compelling stories.

The Knoedler forgery scandal rocked the art world in 2011 and went to trial in January 2016

What We Learned From the Knoedler Trial and Scandal: A Post-Mortem

Paintings looked wrong, experts hesitated about accepting them as authentic, Knoedler tried to suppress scientific research that raised serious questions, ever-changing provenances seemed wildly dubious and Jackson Pollock’s signature was written “Pollok” on one canvas. Take a look at some of the lessons learned in this case after looking back at some major red flags.

London’s annual Frieze art fair © Charlie Bibby

Art Collecting: Young Money, Old Masters

The younger generation is less interested in classifications and more interested in the story.

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA — JUNE 13: A man touches the ground next to rainbow flags during a candlelight vigil for the victims of the Pulse Nightclub shooting in Orlando, Florida, at Newtown Neighbourhood Centre on June 13, 2016 in Sydney, Australia. 50 people were killed and 53 injured after a gunman opened fire on people in a gay nightclub in Florida. It is the deadliest mass shooting in US history. (Photo by Daniel Munoz/Getty Images)

The Art World Responds to the Devastating Orlando Nightclub Shooting

The deadliest mass shooting to take place on American soil left 50 people dead, including gunman Omar Mateen, at Pulse, a gay night club in Orlando. The world reacted to the senseless tragedy with shock and grief, holding vigils and offering artistic tributes to the victims.

Alberto Giacometti at the 1962 Venice Biennale. Photo from Fondo Paolo Monti via Wikimedia Commons.

Trove of Rare Giacometti Drawings and Photographs Seized in Swiss Museum

Swiss prosecutors seized a trove of Alberto Giacometti drawings which were kept in storage in the Grisons Museum of Fine Arts in Chur, Switzerland, for over two years as a result of a bitter ownership dispute. The Alberto and Annette Giacometti Foundation in Paris claimed the trove was stolen decades ago.

Picasso’s 1955 “Women of Algiers (Version ‘O’),” from the collection of Victor and Sally Ganz, sold for $31.9 million in 1997, and sold at Christie’s last year for $179.4 million. Credit Darren Ornitz/Reuters

What the Panama Papers Reveal About the Art Market

There were about 11.5 million documents culled from the Mossack Fonseca law firm in Panama. They detailed off-shore dealings of many individuals across the globe. Many use art as part of their asset storage schemes, mostly through shell companies.

Specialists Speak: Brexit & the Future of the Fine Art Market

When the UK voted to leave the European Union on June 23rd, the historic vote caught the world by surprise. As voting results flooded in, the pound sterling dropped against the dollar, stocks plummeted, and concerns rose over how effects would ripple across stakeholding nations. As the wider financial implications play out, the question of how the Brexit decision affects the current and future art market looms. Overall views on long-term effects on the market are optimistic.

Installation view of Capitain Petzel’s booth at Art Cologne, 2016. Photo courtesy of Art Cologne.

Germany’s Onerous New Art Export Law, Explained

The law imposes restrictions on what artworks can be exported from the country without a license. Artworks valued at more than €150,000 and greater than 50 years of age to be sold outside of the E.U. require government approval, while artworks being moved or sold inside of the E.U. require an export license if they are valued above €300,000 and are over 75 years old.

David Bowie’s Art Captivates Collectors

The sale of David Bowie’s art collection drew bidders to a packed saleroom, and attracted more than a thousand online bidders, for three highly-anticipated auctions of works amassed by the legendary musician. A total of 59 new records for artists were set over the course of two days with an overall sale total of £32.9 million.

Rendering of the Rubell Family Collection new museum, set to open in 2018

Art & Money: The Impact of Private Museums

Major collectors are taking their collections out of their homes and storage to establish private museums and institutions that make their art more accessible to the public.

Julia Greenway

In 2016, Women Artists Led the Way in New Media

Female artists — The search for new names and the best works continues to grow. The high prices for female artists who have written the history of art in their own time will be central to future museum exhibitions. This will have lasting impact in the art market.

Seven Fascinating Discoveries Israeli Archaeologists Made in 2016

This year saw several significant archaeological finds that established the facts of the historical Jewish connection to Israel and Jerusalem.