The Museum of Modern Art has acquired 23 photographs
by eight Chinese artists, including Rong Rong, Huang Yan, and Ai Weiwei,
The acquisition has "ruffled some art-world
feathers because the seller was not the usual dealer but Larry Warsh,"
the former owner of Museums magazine (now owned by ARTINFO parent
company Louise Blouin Media), according to Bloomberg. Warsh began
collecting Chinese art with the help of Beijing-based art historian and
curator Karen Smith in 2002, often buying in bulk, snatching up studio
contents for bargain-basement prices. He now owns "500-plus"
photographs, he says, plus a valuable collection of paintings and
Warsh invited MoMA's curators to sift through images stored at his New
York warehouse, and says he sold them the works at 30 to 40 percent
below market value and donated images by Weng Fen, Zhang Dali, and Zheng
Guogu. MoMA declined to comment on the price.