Pussy Riot Protests Putin’s Palace – Swiss Authorities Drop Dmitry Rybolovlev Case – Giuseppe Penone Donates 200 More Works 




Three members of the Art/Punk/Activist band Pussy Riot have been arrested in Russia. On 23rd January nationwide demonstrations calling for the release of jailed opposition leader Aleksei Navalny, who was poisoned by Vladimir Putin on a flight from Siberia turned violent when police attacked the crowd.

Pussy Riot’s Masha Alekhina, Viktoria Naraxsa, and Lucy Shteyn were included in a list of artists/protesters removed by police in Moscow. Both Narakhsa and Shteyn were given a 10-day jail sentence and authorities fined and released Alekhina on 30,000 rubles $400.

Revelations that Putin has built a lavish Versailles-style palace on the Black Sea with rooms for pole dancing and spa-style facilities have reverberated throughout Russia sparking some of the unrest.

Dmitry Rybolovlev

Dmitry Rybolovlev

Swiss Authorities Drop Dmitry Rybolovlev Case 

Swiss prosecutors have dropped the case brought by Russian oligarch Dmitry Rybolovlev, the seller of the $450m Salvator Mundi. He was suing the art dealer Yves Bouvier for hundreds of millions of dollars.

Bouvier worked with Rybolovlev as an adviser to help build an art collection that included works by Picasso, Monet, Van Gogh, Modigliani Rodin, Matisse, and Leonardo da Vinci’s “Salvator Mundi”.

Cases in Monaco, Singapore, and Switzerland have been ongoing. Geneva’s top prosecutor Yves Bertossa dropped the Swiss case, after Rybolovlev lost his Monaco appeal in December. Bertossa’s office announced to the parties that they were going to close the case”.

The parties have until January 30 to oppose the closure of the case.

Rybolovlev and Bouvier’s relationship soured when Rybolovlev accused Bouvier of overcharging him. The Russian put the da Vinci in an auction in 2017 which sold for a record $450 million. He had paid just $120m for the artwork. So who is the loser here???

He amassed his money in the fertilizer industry after the collapse of the Soviet Union. Forbes business magazine ranks him number 224 on its list of the world’s richest people for 2020, with a net worth of $6.7 billion.

Giuseppe Penone FOLLOW Spine d'acacia - contatto, marzo 2005, 2005

Giuseppe Penone
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Spine d’acacia – contatto, marzo 2005, 2005

Giuseppe Penone Arte Povera sculptor Donates 200 More Works 

Giuseppe Penone the noted Arte Povera artist has donated more than 200 works on paper to the Castello di Rivoli art centre in Italy’s Piedmont area where he was born.

Throughout his fifty-year career, Giuseppe Penone employed a wide range of materials and forms in an exploration of the fundamental language of sculpture. A protagonist of Arte Povera, Penone explores respiration, growth, and aging—among other involuntary processes—to create an expansive body of work including sculpture, performance, works on paper, and photography.

In 1969 Penone created the first of his Alberi (Trees): “stripped” trees made by carving into mature timbers and removing the wood along the outer growth rings to reveal the memory of a sapling at the core of the trunk. This ongoing series has taken on various permutations as Penone refines his techniques and experiments with different sizes and installations. In 1970 he even carved an Albero in the presence of an audience, merging sculpture and performance. This same year he made the Rovesciare i propri occhi (Reversing One’s Eyes) works, in which he wore custom-made mirrored contact lenses and had himself photographed. The lenses, though they deprived the artist of his own gaze, allowed him to objectively record images, literally reflecting his surroundings.

In Penone’s work, sculptural transformations draw the viewer’s attention to details that have long existed but are easily overlooked. By bringing the grandeur—as well as the modesty and intimacy—of raw but also cultural material into various settings, Penone raises questions about sculpture and its essence.

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