Art news weekly round-up

  • 19 December 2014

The Tate Archive launches online, a Churchill painting breaks records and the Racton Man reveals his secrets – we round up the top art stories of the week.

Winston Churchill, The Goldfish Pool at Chartwell, 1950 (AP Photo/Tim Ireland)

Winston Churchill, The Goldfish Pool at Chartwell, 1950

Tate Archive goes online

52,000 letters, photographs and sketchbooks belonging to great 20th-century British artists are to be made available online by the Tate Archive. According to the Guardian items include the love letters of painter Paul Nash, the detailed sculpture records of Barbara Hepworth, and 3,000 photographs by Nigel Henderson. The Times reports that correspondence between Jacob Epstein and his daughter ​proves the sculptor's disdain for Winston Churchill's paintings.

Racton Man reveals his secrets

Twenty three years after the Bronze Age Racton Man was found, archaeologists realised his dagger was the oldest bronze object ever found in UK, a staggering 4,200 years of age according to the Independent. Dr Stuart Needham, a Bronze Age specialist who worked on the project says 'He would have been a very prominent member of society, someone of great seniority.'

Churchill auction breaks records

Following the death of Mary Soames, Winston Churchill's last surviving daughter, a Sotheby's sale of Churchill memorabilia went up for auction this week. The Daily Mail reports that his painting The Goldfish Pool at Chartwell, labelled 'extremely personal' by auctioneers, had been estimated to be worth between £400,000 and £600,000, but broke records when it sold for £1.8 million.

Relics return to Native Americans

Native Americans bid successfully for seven sacred masks at a disputed auction of tribal artefacts in Paris. The Guardian states that the masks – believed to have been used during Navajo religious and healing ceremonies in the late 19th century – are regarded by the tribe as living beings.

And finally...

The teddy on which the much-loved fictional bear Winnie the Pooh was based may come home for a brief period following news from the New York Public Library, where it is currently on display. Angela Montefinise, director of media relations for the library, told the Telegraph that curators were 'absolutely open' to letting the bear travel as long as he was taken good care of while on loan.