An estimated $500 million to $1 billion in art will go on sale at TEFAF Maastricht, otherwise known as the European Fine Art Fair in Maastricht, the Netherlands, from today until March 14, 2004. Some 200 dealers from 14 countries, 75 percent from outside Holland, are set up in the Maastricht Exhibition and Congress Centre (MECC), a 27,000-square-meter space (the size of four soccer fields) that is roughly divided into four quadrants, with half the area devoted to galleries specializing in antiques and works of art, a quarter given over to dealers in paintings, drawings and prints and a quarter reserved for modern art. Daily admission to the fair is 30 euros, including the catalogue, and there is an impressive “virtual tour”. The galleries include London’s Richard Green Gallery, which deals paintings; Paris’s B.B. Steinitz, focused on 17th and 18th century furniture and Maastricht’s own Noortman Master Paintings, devoted to Dutch Old Masters. The works on display will range from 10th century Byzantine artifacts to Russian crown jewels, Egyptian art, illuminated manuscripts and Old Master to Pop Art and Minimalist paintings.
Art Basel will be held for the 35th time from June 16 to 21, 2004. It is the world’s largest and most important fair for modern and contemporary art and the annual meeting place of the international art world including collectors, gallery owners, artists, curators and art enthusiasts from all over the world. 270 galleries from all five continents will participate, selected by the «Art Committee» from 850 applications. Every form of artistic expression will be represented at Art 35 Basel, showing works by over 1,500 artists of the XX and XXI century. The repertoire ranges from paintings, drawings and editions through sculptures and installations to performances, internet and video art. The outstanding reputation of Art Basel is based on the high quality and unique variety of the works of art and on the international composition of its visitors. Around 50,000 visitors and almost 1,500 representatives of the media from all over the world are expected to take part in the event.
Sotheby’s announced last week that the Forbes Collection of FabergК, which had been scheduled for sale at auction in New York in April, has been sold by private treaty to a prominent Russian industrialist.
The sale immediately follows the Russian government’s decision to axe a debilitating tax previously levied on art and antiques imports.
In what Sotheby’s CEO Bill Ruprecht called “an unanticipated and exceptional outcome” the Forbes family and Sotheby’s (who had guaranteed the sale) accepted a “remarkable offer” from Victor Vekselberg, the chief operating officer of Russia’s third largest oil and gas company TNK-BP.
Cheffins of Cambridge are celebrating what must rank as one of the most dramatic – and certainly one of the highest – prices ever recorded in the UK provinces after their February 11-12 sale that included a pair of white marble seated figures by Sir Henry Cheere (1703-81).
Although works by Cheere are not often seen on the market, Sotheby’s had sold his 10ft 6in (3.2m) marble monument to Sir George Cooke, that had previously stood in Sir Elton John’s garden, for a low-estimate J250,000 in their December 12 Bond Street sale. According to Cheffins auctioneer Jonathan Law, this was taken into account when Cheffins consulted outside expertise to assess this seated pair of Vulcan and Venus that stand 201/2in (52cm) and 211/2in (55cm) high respectively.
The only one study that exists on the money that turns around the art in Spain was published by the Union of Associations of Galleries. Between 2002 and 2005 721 million euros were handled. The experts maintain that the 10 percent of the painting that is sold in Spain is false. In the artistic jargon he receives the name of fakes. This valuation becomes from samples gathered of the police seizures, by denunciations of buyers and the inestimable collaboration of dedicated historians to authenticate works.
The Third Berlin Biennial for Contemporary Art opens today and will be on view through April 18 in Berlin. The founding of the berlin biennial for contemporary art in 1998 institutionalized an international biennial unique to Germany. The heterogeneity of Berlin which derives from the myth of its past, from the alternative, subcultural and critical practice of the 1980s and early 1990s as well as from politically and economically motivated redefinitions and shifts caused by its role as the ‘New Capital’‚ is the reference point fort he 3rd berlin biennial.
The National Gallery and The Duke of Northumberland are delighted to announce they have reached agreement on the sale of Raphael’s ’‘The Madonna of the Pinks’ to the National Gallery. The parties are pleased with this result which will enable this extraordinary painting to be held in perpetuity for the British people. At the same time it allows the Northumberland Estates to help finance extensive heritage restoration, landscape, farming, forestry and rural regeneration work in the North East of England.
Sotheby’s has recently installed eleven pieces of artwork at the exclusive Isleworth Country Club in a showing that it has titled, “Monumental Masterpieces of Modern Sculpture.” This private exhibition is unprecedented for Sotheby’s, and puts on display an extraordinary collection of sculpture, featuring pieces by Auguste Rodin, Henry Moore, Jean DuBuffet, Salvador Dali and Joan Miro, among others. The total value of the offering is more than $20 million. These works of art will also be available for private sale.
Marking 100 years since the birth of Salvador Dali, Christie’s fourth annual sale dedicated to The Art of the Surreal took place last night. The sale was highlighted by one of the artist’s ’white paintings’, L’echo du vide (The Echo of the Void), painted in 1935 and inspired by the coastal landscape around Cadaques, where the artist grew up. The work incorporates several of the most recurring themes of Dali’s art in those years, blending them into a semi-abstract image of a netherworld in which a lone figure walks across a landscape dominated by a cypress tree, an archetypal Mediterranean symbol of death. Another magnificent work was Rene Magritte’s Le retour, a gouache on paper executed in 1950, depicting a bird painted sky blue with clouds above a night-time seascape. Although the sky-bird was not used extensively in Magritte’s work, the image is immediately associated with the artist.
Christie’s Impressionist & Modern Art evening sale took place last night. It was rich in works central to the modern movement of the early 20th century and, together with the fact that such a high proportion of works were totally fresh to the market, demand was expected to be strong this season. Featuring works by the leading artists of the period from Cezanne, Seurat, Degas to Leger, Matisse and Picasso, the auction charts the course of Impressionism through to Fauvism, Cubism and German Expressionism. The centerpiece of the sale was Lyonel Feininger’s Zeitungsleser II (Newspaper Readers II), from 1916, arguably one of the most significant works from the artist’s mature years and poised to establish a new world auction record for the artist. Painted at a critical time in the history of 20th century painting, the work shows strong influences of Cubism and Futurism, the most significant movements of the pre-war years. The vibrant bright colors belie the fact that Newspaper Readers II was painted during the First World War, a period of great uncertainty and difficulty for Feininger, who as an American citizen living in the German Reich, felt increasingly nervous at the likelihood of the United States entering the war.