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R.I.P.: American abstract artist Cy Twombly died this week at 83. The painter from Virginia specialized in lines, squiggles, and splatters, and was frequently misunderstood throughout his early career. The rise of neo-expressionism invigorated his reputation in the 1980s, and Twombly’s works went on to fetch over $1 million at auction. Twombly, who was gay, is displayed in tony museums and private homes worldwide, but his works were noticeably absent from the National Portrait Gallery’s landmark (and censored) queer-themed exhibit “Hide/Seek,” which closed earlier this year. Co-curator Jonathan Katz said the wealthy people and institutions who own his work were resistant to associating their collections with homosexuality. To immerse yourself in Twombly’s legacy, read the New York Times obituary and view a Twombly slideshow.
Nadir: LGBT nightclub Apex suddenly closed last weekend, taking some employees by surprise. “I was expecting we’d get some notice. We were expecting a closing party,” security and lighting technician Christian Heck told Metro Weekly. General manager Joey Oldaker told the Washington Blade he knew the club was for sale, but “none of us knew it was coming as quickly as it did.” Owner Glen Thompson did not comment. Apex opened in 1983 under the name Badlands, and closed Sunday after 28 years in business.
La Cage Aux Folles: TBD’s Sarah Godfrey reports that the large sculpture in the Phillips Collection’s Hunter Courtyard is secondarily useful as a massive bird trap.
Cuckoo Kajagoogoo: David Malitz did not enjoy the John Maus show at Black Cat on Tuesday night. “A number of questions run through your mind during a John Maus concert,” says Malitz. “What’s he saying? Is he being serious? Is he okay? Isn’t this a Kajagoogoo song?” The Ariel Pink contemporary is on tour promoting his album We Must Become The Pitiless Censors Of Ourselves.
Today on Arts Desk: It’s Thursday, so you can read some of the arts stories that are in our paper today. Like Kriston Capps’ piece about two artists planning their own arts fair as an alternative to (e)merge in September.