Ebay Art Scam Broken Up In Chicago

March 20, 2008 · Print This Article

Pablo Picasso, Marc Chagall and Andy Warhol were among artists whose works were counterfeited by seven people indicted for two art-fraud schemes that reaped a combined $5 million.

Those charged include three Europeans and residents of New York, Florida and Illinois, Chicago U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald said today in a statement. They sold thousands of fake prints in the U.S., Canada, Australia, Japan and Europe, he alleged.

“Most of us have never owned a work of art signed by Picasso,” Fitzgerald said today at a press conference. Some people who believed they did, he added, “bought fakes.”

Some of the prints in the scam were sold on EBay Inc., the world’s largest online auctioneer, Fitzgerald alleged. Others were funneled through two art dealers in Northbrook, Illinois, prosecutors claimed. Read more

Iraq Breakdown by Key Indices

March 20, 2008 · Print This Article

Here is a visual breakdown (view image full size) of key indices in relation to the state of violence, oil production, death rate, phone subscriptions, prison population & most interestingly the electricity production.

The most interesting measurement is when you compare to pre-war states, especially the electricity output.

Read more here

Iraq Breakdown Graph

Buddha sells for $14.3mil, Breaks Japansese Art Record

March 19, 2008 · Print This Article

Buddha Art Record
A newly discovered wooden sculpture of a Buddha that had religious objects sealed in its torso for 800 years sold for $14.3 million, setting a world record for any Japanese work of art, Christie’s auction house said.

The seated figure of Dainichi Nyorai, or the supreme Buddha, is attributed to Unkei, considered one of the two best sculptors of the early Kamakura period in the 1190s, when the most highly regarded Buddhist art was produced.

It was purchased at auction Tuesday by Mitsukoshi Ltd., one of Japan’s major department stores. Its presale estimate was $1.5 million to $2 million.

The Buddha, made of Cyprus wood, sits in a lotus position wearing princely attire, a crown and jewelry, and hair in a topknot. It is believed to have come from a temple during the Meiji period (1868-1911) when Shinto was adopted as the state religion of Japan, Christie’s said. Read more

Cosmetics head Lauder and Chairman to Whitney board donates $131 million to the Whitney Museum

March 19, 2008 · Print This Article

Chairman of the cosmetics company Estee Lauder; Leonard A. Lauder is giving $131 million US to the Whitney Museum of American Art.

The gift is the largest donation in the institution’s history, with about $125 million going towards the New York museum’s endowment, according to a Wednesday report in the New York Times.

The 75-year-old billionaire hopes the donation would spur others to give generously to the Whitney.

Stating that his intention was to help the Whitney retain its Marcel Breuer building on Madison Avenue at 75th Street.

“I believe the Whitney and the Breuer building are one,” Lauder told the Times. Read more

LoL Susan Sontag

March 18, 2008 · Print This Article