Getty Cracks the Mystery of King Tut’s Spots – For decades, visitors to King Tutankhamen’s tomb in Egypt have wondered about the brown spots covering the walls. Now, experts from the Getty Conservation Institute have solved the mystery. It turns out the spots are due to mold. The good news? The fungus is as dead as the boy pharaoh, so it won’t be getting any worse. (New York Times)

Pushback to the Obama Presidential Center Mounts – Critics of the planned Obama Presidential Center in Jackson Park, Chicago, object to the loss of green space and worry that rising rents will price poor people out of the South Side neighborhood. Even faculty members of the nearby University of Chicago, where Obama taught, are divided over the $500 million campus, which the former president says will create jobs and regenerate the area. (Washington Post)

Duchess of Cambridge Becomes V&A Patron – The Duchess of Cambridge’s museum portfolio is growing: she is now the royal patron to the Victoria & Albert Museum in London. The art history graduate recently penned wall labels for the Victorian photography show at the National Portrait Gallery, where she is also a patron. (Press release)

Ai Weiwei Has South America in His Sights – The exiled Chinese artist reveals that he has five shows lined up across South America and 25 assistants at work in Brazil. While Ai can’t be in Hong Kong for Art Basel this week, his art about the global refugee crisis is on view—and, to his surprise, works by his half brother, Ai Xuan, are, too. (The Art Newspaper)


Basquiat Canvas Could Sell for $30 Million – A 12-foot-square canvas by Basquiat could hammer for $30 million on May 16 at Sotheby’s in New York. The seller bought Flesh and Spirit for $15,000 from the late artist’s solo show at Tony Shafrazi Gallery in 1983, the same year it was painted. Not a bad profit. (Bloomberg)

Tehran Gallery Makes Art Basel Debut – The first Iranian gallery to show at an Art Basel fair, Dastan’s Basement from Tehran, is participating in Art Basel Hong Kong this week. Asian galleries are also out in force: The fair is hosting 41 galleries from Mainland China (six more than last year), plus three newcomers from India. (TAN)

Beatrix Ruf Returns to Judge Art Brussels – The former director of the Stedelijk, who left amid a storm of controversy last year, will be a judge for Art Brussels’s solo prize. Participating artists include the veteran Hong Kong performance artist Frog King, who will paint visitors’ names or messages in his signature font during the fair. (Press release) Read more