News from Around the Art World: December 26, 2017

The Clock Is Ticking: Reward for Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum Heist on Dec 31: $10 million. On January 1: $5 million

As midnight approaches on New Year’s Eve, when much of the country will be glued to the broadcasts from Times Square, Anthony Amore will be waiting for his phone to ring.

He is no lovelorn teen: Mr. Amore, director of security at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, is a detective of sorts on the trail of the world’s largest unsolved art heist, in which thieves purloined 13 items, valued at half a billion dollars, from the museum in 1990. They stole works by Rembrandt, Vermeer, Degas and others.

The museum is offering a head-spinning reward of $10 million for information leading to their recovery, an amount it says is the largest private reward ever offered for stolen property. The offer expires on Jan. 1, when it reverts to $5 million.

--Via New York Times

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Architecture Sleuths Solve Mystery of World's Fair House in Wilmette

A Chicago architect has solved the mystery surrounding a Wilmette house's possible origin as a demonstration home built for the Century of Progress World's Fair in 1933. 

Crain's reported this month that a family of homebuilders unwittingly purchased a lost landmark when it was marketed as vacant land. The Kruszewskis, a father and son who run MJK Homes, paid $915,000 for two-fifths of an acre on Chestnut Avenue, only later finding out from village officials that the squarish house might have been a model home from the fair and was moved up afterward from the Northerly Island fairgrounds.

--Via Dennis Rodkin, Crains's

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An Interactive Selfie Museum is Opening in Los Angeles

Get your selfie sticks out because a museum dedicated to selfies is opening in Los Angeles in January.

The Selfie Museum will showcase selfie-inspired art and provide a number of spaces to take selfies for museum-goers. Many of the exhibits will play to staples of social media like food and bathroom mirror pictures, Mashable reported.

Lisa Marie Segarra, Travel + Leisure 

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22 Photos That Capture Christmas In The US

For many Americans, Christmas is a time for joy and acts of kindness. For others, it's a time for intense, over-the-top Christmas displays, excessive holiday shopping, and fire hazards around every corner. For the last 7 years, photographer Jesse Rieser has focused his camera on aspects of the holiday season that might appear a bit odd to those unfamiliar with Christmas traditions in the US.

In a statement on the artist's website for his ongoing project Christmas in America: Happy Birthday, Jesus, Rieser describes his pictures not as poking fun at these traditions, but rather a sincere exploration of the things that make this holiday unique for so many Americans.

--Via Gabriel H. Sanchez, Buzzfeed

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Top image: An empty frame marks the spot where Rembrandt’s “The Storm on the Sea of Galilee” once hung in the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston. Credit M. Scott Brauer for The New York Times