Benjamin Genocchio

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Benjamin Genocchio
Born (1969-04-28) 28 April 1969 (age 46)
Nationality Australian
Education Newington College
Occupation Art critic
Title Editor-in-chief of Artnet News
Spouse(s) Melissa Chiu

Benjamin Giorgio Genocchio (born 28 April 1969) is an Australian-born non-fiction writer, art critic and editor, now residing in the U.S. state of New York. He formerly worked for The New York Times as an art critic,[1] then as the editor-in-chief of Art+Auction magazine and Modern Painters magazine as well as the website and is currently editor-in-chief of the art world news website Artnet News. He is the author and editor of seven books.[2]


Genocchio was born in Sydney, New South Wales and attended Newington College (1981–86).[3] He studied Arts/Law at the University of Sydney and later completed a Ph.D in art history.[4]


Genocchio began his career in journalism in his native Australia, writing for Business Review Weekly, a weekly business and politics magazine. He later wrote art criticism for The Bulletin, a weekly current-affairs magazine, and The Sydney Morning Herald newspaper, before, in 1997, being appointed Sydney art critic for The Australian, Australia's national daily newspaper. He rose rapidly to become the paper's chief art critic and later National Arts Correspondent, covering art and culture in Australia and abroad. He was twice shortlisted for the Pascall Prize, Australia's premier prize for cultural criticism.

Italian government lawsuit[edit]

In April 2002, Genocchio gained international notoriety when as the art critic for The Australian newspaper he was being threatened with a $50-million lawsuit by the Italian government for his blunt front-page critique of a visiting exhibition of Italian old master paintings at the National Gallery of Australia.[5] The review prompted the Italian culture chief Vittorio Sgarbi to denounce the review and promise to sue the newspaper for defamation. No claim was ever made, nor was even legally valid, though the story generated headlines and was carried in dozens of newspapers worldwide, including The New York Times and The Times.[6]

New York Times[edit]

In late December 2002 he moved to New York to begin writing for The New York Times.[7] In 2008 Genocchio published Dollar Dreaming, an exposé of corruption and double-dealing in the $500-million trade in Aboriginal art in Australia and abroad.[8] The book received a great deal of media attention, especially in Australia.[9]

Louise Blouin Media[edit]

In early 2010, he joined New York-based Louise Blouin Media as editorial director, assuming the posts of editor-in-chief of Art+Auction magazine, Modern Painters and the website In 2011, he stepped down as editor-in-chief of Modern Painters magazine to concentrate on Art+Auction and the expansion of the website.[10]

Artnet News[edit]

In December 2013 Genocchio joined Artnet, the publicly traded German-based online price database, auction and internet services company to build and launch Artnet News, the first 24-hour global art market newswire.[11] The site was launched in February 2014 with 15 staff on three continents.[12]


  • Dollar Dreaming: The Rise of the Aboriginal Art Market[13]
  • Fiona Foley: Solitaire[14]
  • The Art of Persuassion, Australian Art Criticism
  • Simeon Nelson, Passages
  • (ed.) What is Installation?[15]
  • Asian Contemporary Art
  • (ed.) Contemporary Asian Art, A Critical Reader