VOLTA’s New Artistic Director Shares His Vision, and Other News

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Galerie Heike Strelow’s booth at VOLTA 2023. Image courtesy of VOLTA

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VOLTA’s New Artistic Director Shares His Vision

Change is afoot at VOLTA, the globally recognized art fair focused on providing a platform for younger and middle-market galleries. The fair recently named curator and contemporary art specialist Lee Cavaliere as its new artistic director. He brings a wealth of experience from the gallery and institutional sector, where he worked with Tate’s Collection displays, delivered contemporary exhibitions at Max Wigram Gallery and the Fine Art Society, and served as head of sales at the London Art Fair, where he developed the VIP program. Additionally, he founded and directed VOMA, the world’s first online art museum, founded arts education charity The Sixteen Trust, and works with numerous charitable projects internationally.

For VOLTA, his focus lies in furthering the fair’s commitment to cutting-edge curation. In addition to strengthening relationships with existing galleries, he aims to introduce a fellowship program encouraging new galleries to curate presentations that boldly present the unique perspectives of their artists to the emerging market. “We’re living in a different world than just a few years ago,” Cavaliere says. “People are more discerning and mindful of engaging with socially conscious art. Like the wider arts industries, VOLTA needs to transform to align with the future and provide more access to emerging and diverse artistic voices.” 

In one of Cavaliere’s first moves, he named a group of international Board Members to enhance the 2024 edition of VOLTA Basel, which is returning to the city’s blusting Klybeck district. The advisory board aims to support the fair’s influence locally, regionally, and internationally, with a major focus in the Middle East, North Africa, and European regions to complement Cavaliere’s experience in the Asian market. This esteemed cohort includes Sheila Arora, vice-chair of the Europe-Asia Center; Art Talk Magazine founders Carolina Conforti and Francois Laurent Renet; Swiss lawyer Patrick Petermann; Düsseldorf-based gallerist Christian Marx; art historian and gallerist Julia Lechbinska; designer and art director Pamela Hraoui; and MENA Global Group chairman William Kaafarni.

Image courtesy of Skims

Skims will drop a range of ready-to-wear garments adorned with Swarovski crystals.

Skims shows no signs of slowing down. Following the recent launch of its men’s underwear and baselayer sport collection with Neymar Júnior, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, and Nick Bosa, and becoming the official underwear partner of the NBA and WNBA, Kim Kardashian’s shapewear brand has unveiled a new collaboration with Swarovski. This partnership offers a range of shimmery ready-to-wear garments, intimates, and body jewelry in natural body-toned hues and classic black. The collection includes dresses, bodysuits, chokers, necklaces, and bracelets, aiming to bring more glamour into daily dressing. The collaboration will launch globally on November 7 at Swarovski’s Fifth Avenue flagship store and online.

Marilyn and Larry Fields make a “landmark” donation of 79 works to MCA Chicago.

Marilyn and Larry Fields, Chicago philanthropists and art collectors, have donated 79 artworks from their collection to the Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA) in Chicago. This significant gift marks a longstanding relationship, dating back to 1998, when Marilyn Fields joined the Women’s Board at the museum, with Larry Fields later becoming a trustee in 2005. The transformative gift addresses collection gaps and recognizes the growing demographic diversity in the art world, with nearly 80 percent of the donated works coming from woman-identifying artists and artists of color. The donation includes pieces by notables such as Huma Bhabha, Amanda Ross-Ho, Adrian Piper, Kehinde Wiley, and more, expanding the museum’s existing holdings and highlighting local artists.

Rendering of the planned museum to memorialize Pulse victims. Image courtesy of Coldefy & Associés with RDAI/onePULSE Foundation

Plans for a museum honoring victims of the Pulse nightclub shooting are scrapped.

The onePulse Foundation, a nonprofit dedicated to honoring the victims of the Pulse nightclub shooting, has abandoned its plans to build a museum in Orlando due to rising construction costs. The foundation met with Mayor Jerry Demings of Orange County to convey that the project’s projected cost had become unfeasible. In response, the foundation will transfer the property it had acquired for the museum to the county. The museum, which was to be located near the former club, was part of a combined $45 million project, and the city of Orlando is now focused on creating a memorial at the Pulse site.

Buckminster Fuller’s geodesic home will get a visitor center clad in 3D-printed panels.

Buckminster Fuller introduced his geodesic dome concept at the 1954 Milan Triennale with a cardboard model, setting off a lifelong exploration of spherical housing and energy-efficient construction. He eventually lived in one of his designs. Now, R. Buckminster Fuller Dome Home Not-For-Profit, the organization overseeing his former residence, plans to build a 2,400-square-foot visitor center and museum on the site. The project will incorporate 3D printing and prefab construction methods, echoing Fuller’s principle of doing more with less, while paying tribute to his enduring influence on architectural innovation and sustainability.

Nil Yalter and Anna Maria Maiolino receive the Venice Biennale’s Golden Lion Awards.

The 2024 Venice Biennale has awarded Golden Lions for Lifetime Achievement to artists Anna Maria Maiolino and Nil Yalter ahead of its spring opening. The decision to honor them aligns with the theme of the main exhibition, “Stranieri Ovunque—Foreigners Everywhere,” curated by Adriano Pedrosa, which focuses on artists who have moved between the Global North and South. Maiolino, born in Italy, raised in Venezuela, and based in Brazil, is known for her conceptual artworks and films, including the renowned Mental Maps series. Yalter, born in Egypt, educated in Turkey, and residing in France, has challenged gender norms and explored identity through her films and installations. Both artists will debut new works at the Biennale, marking their first participation in the event.

Image courtesy of Bargello Museums, Florence

Today’s attractive distractions:

A forgotten vault where Michelangelo once sketched finally opens to the public.

China’s wealthiest person made billions by extracting and bottling pristine water.

The NBA unveils 30 “City Edition” jerseys to match the league’s painted courts.

Joshua Frankel’s public art at Moynihan Train Hall just blends in with other ads.

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