Damien Hirst's Demon With Bowl (Exhibition Enlargement), a 60-foot-tall work in his new show in Venice.COURTESY DAMIEN HIRST AND SCIENCE LTD.

Damien Hirst’s Demon With Bowl (Exhibition Enlargement), a 60-foot-tall work in his new show in Venice.

COURTESY DAMIEN HIRST AND SCIENCE LTD.

‘Treasures from the Wreck of the Unbelievable’

Damien Hirst’s humongous spectacle of a show has opened at Francois Pinault’s two Venice spaces, the Punta della Dogana and the Palazzo Grassi, and the first reviews are in. It seems like a love-it-or-hate-it type of thing. Matthew Collings, writing in the London Evening Standard, claims to be a fan—he calls it a “triumphant return.” “It’s a great series of reflections on fakery, belief, truth and absolutes,” he wrote. [London Evening Standard]

Jan Dalley, writing in the Financial Times, isn’t quite as convinced. She compares the hubris of it all to Fitzcarraldo, the Werner Herzog film about a man’s futile attempt to build an opera house in the middle of the jungle. [The Financial Times]

On the negative end of things: Alastair Sooke thinks “this spectacular failure could be the shipwreck of his career.” [The Telegraph]

Will Harrison’s take is more of a critical overview of Hirst’s career rather than a review of the the new show, but it’s an insightful look into what the writer perceives to be the artist’s sense of “moral hazard.” [The Baffler]

There are rumors that the show cost £50 million ($61.9 million) to produce, leading one observer to comment that “this is quite probably the most expensive single art show ever put on by a contemporary artist.” [CNN]

Meanwhile, Hirst himself was out in Venice making sketches for Hans Ulrich Obrist’s Instagram account. [Hans Ulrich Obrist Instagram]

And the Red Hot Chili Peppers played the after-party. Hirst designed the cover of their 2011 album, “I’m With You.” [Matt Carey-Williams Instagram]

Matters of the Market

Scott Reyburn checks in on the stability of the global art trade routes, and finds that the markets for work by established, brand name artists are relatively safe, while speculation on young artists is now considered “risky.” [The New York Times]

There’s unrest among the middle-class galleries in London, causing some to move or shut down. [Artsy]

But at least Christie’s has finished locking down the consignments for its postwar and contemporary evening sale that will take place in New York in May. [Loic Gouzer Instagram]

Arthena founder Madelaine D’Angelo discussed the automation of the art market, in which robots use tens of thousands of data points to speculate on the future value of a work. [The Huffington Post]

Documenta 14

The Athens branch of Documenta opened late last week. Jason Farago has an early review: He’s tepidly into it, with some hesitation. “If the exhibition falls short (far short, in places) of the great editions of 1972 and 2002, Mr. Szymczyk’s decision to uproot Documenta was the right one,” Farago writes. “This Hellenized Documenta is sometimes forceful, often obscure, and in places exhaustingly proud of itself. Parts reminded me of the apartment rental app Airbnb, which allows young cosmopolitans to ‘go local’ on the cheap.” [The New York Times]

The presidents of Greece and Germany were both on hand for the festivities. [Deutsche Welle]

And here’s a map of independent projects that have programming in Athens during Documenta. [e-flux]

On View

Jenny Uglow reviews the Howard Hodgkin show at the National Portrait Gallery. [The New York Review of Books]

Two paintings by Paolo Veronese that have never before been seen outside of a tiny church not far from Venice will travel to the Frick in October. [The New York Times]

A year ago, seven Andy Warhol soup can prints were stolen from the Springfield Art Museum in Springfield, Missouri. Authorities still don’t have a single lead on the culprits. [KY3]

PSA: You can smoke cigarettes inside at Tam Ochiai’s new show at Team Gallery in New York’s SoHo. The sculptures include found ashtrays, and the act of smoking inside activates the work. [Team Gallery Instagram]

Texas Forever

The Dallas Art Fair was held this weekend, and the local paper took a look at the exhibitions that were put on around town to take advantage of all out-of-town collectors and dealers. [Dallas News]

Just as exciting: the 30th annual Art Car Parade in Houston! [KHOU]

Baylor students and local art fans flocked to the Art on Elm event in East Waco, Texas. [Waco Tribune-Herald]

Patsy Cline

The Patsy Cline Museum had its grand opening in Nashville this weekend, and it looks like a real gem. [RFD-TV]