Monster Mash: Arts groups to fight City Hall; Shepard Fairey mural vandalized; Met picks guest conductor

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--Battle plans: Arts advocates are preparing to fight Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa’s bid to divert funding to four of his handpicked programs and a City Council proposal to end nonprofit groups’ rent-free use of city buildings. (Los Angeles Times)

--Rude welcome: Vandals in New York have spray-painted and ripped holes in a mural created by L.A. street artist Shepard Fairey in conjunction with his May show at the gallery of Jeffrey Deitch, the incoming director of the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles. (ARTINFO)

--On the podium: Fabio Luisi has been named principal guest conductor of the Metropolitan Opera, whose music director, James Levine, has been plagued by health problems. (Associated Press)

--Phony Picasso: A West Hollywood art and antiques dealer has agreed to plead guilty to federal fraud charges after she allegedly sold a fake Picasso for $2 million. (Los Angeles Times)

--End of an era: Carlson & Co., the San Fernando-based art fabricator known for producing complex contemporary pieces such as Jeff Koons’ stainless-steel ‘Balloon Dog,’ is closing -- a victim of the slumping economy. (Bloomberg)


--Oops: A street-cleaning crew in Melbourne, Australia, accidentally painted over a stencil of a parachuting rat created by British guerrilla artist Banksy. (Associated Press)

--Marquee name: The Museum of Modern Art in New York says a retrospective exhibit on filmmaker Tim Burton drew the third-highest attendance in its history. (New York Times)

--Future film? The creators of Broadway’s ‘Memphis,’ which originated at the La Jolla Playhouse, are in talks to take their show to the big screen, according to the musical’s lyricist and book writer, Joe DiPietro. (Playbill)

--Top price: A 1934 oil landscape by Egyptian painter Mahmoud Said has sold for a record $2.43 million in Dubai. (Bloomberg)

--Show will go on: The Theatre World Awards -- which have honored outstanding debut performances on and off-Broadway for more than six decades -- are in serious financial trouble, organizers say. Even so, officials still plan to hold this year’s awards ceremony in June. (Playbill)

Also in the Los Angeles Times: Theater critic Charles McNulty reviews ‘Enron’ at the Broadhurst Theatre on Broadway; Jenny Holzer, creator of art featuring ‘truisms’ and other sayings, is being honored by the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles.

-- Karen Wada