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Art Stage Singapore Set to Elevate Prominence of Asian Art in the Global Arena
A worker picks his way through an installation by Indian artist Paresh Maity showing an ant colony made from old Enfield motorcycle parts at the Art Stage Singapore, which opened in Singapore on 12 January 2011. This first edition of the Art Stage Singapore fair, featuring over 120 contemporary and modern art galleries from 26 countries, will present a balance of Asia Pacific galleries juxtaposed against selected Western galleries. EPA/STEPHEN MORRISON.

SINGAPORE.- On January 12th, 2011, Art Stage Singapore, Asia’s new premier international art fair, opened the world’s art season with its debut at the iconic Marina Bay Sands. The inaugural fair features a selection of 90 of the world’s leading and up-and-coming galleries in a showcase of the best and most exciting of Asian artistic creativity.

A Strong Asian Identity
Art Stage Singapore is an annual show focused on and presenting the very best of the Asia Pacific as well as the region’s most interesting emerging artists.

As a forward continuation of Fair Director Lorenzo Rudolf’s work across the globe (Director of Art Basel from 1991 to 2000, Inventor of Art Basel Miami Beach and Co-Founder of ShContemporary, Shanghai), Art Stage Singapore is set to be much more than a trade show for the art industry.

Art Stage Singapore is an international show with the right balance, with Asia Pacific galleries juxtaposed against carefully selected Western galleries that complement and not conflict. The fair aims to elevate Asia Pacific galleries to a level of international prominence, enabling them to become strong competitive players in the global market.

Mr. Rudolf explained: “What is most important is that the fair has a unique identity. It makes no sense to duplicate in Asia an Art Basel or Frieze, nor to bring a large delegation of Western galleries presenting big names and brands of mediocre quality, or galleries offering what they were not able to sell in the West. The most important factor of a good and interesting art fair is the quality of the presented works.”

Carefully selected to ensure utmost quality, the fair’s exhibitors comprise a balance between established and young galleries and artists. Visitors can look forward to stunning masterpieces from established names while special projects by young and emerging artists present opportunities for discovering future stars of the art world.

The Art World’s New Destination
Art Stage Singapore brings together artists, collectors, dealers and art professionals from East and West to create exciting new opportunities for the Asia Pacific.

The open art scenes in Europe and the United States function as an integrated community of artists, gallerists and collectors. Asia however, still remains fragmented with many individual and insular art scenes or markets – China, India, Korea, Japan, South East Asia, Australia and New Zealand.

Mr Rudolf commented: “These Asia Pacific markets have to be opened up and brought together – and Art Stage Singapore will be the place of their get-together. It will be the event that “match-makes” galleries, dealers, artists, collectors, art lovers and arts professionals.”

Together with Asian opinion leaders such as Peter Nagy (Nature Morte, India), Emily Chao (Eslite, Taiwan) and Tomio Koyama (Tomio Koyama Gallery, Japan) who actively cooperate with the fair organiser as part of its exhibitors committee, Art Stage Singapore, through a special collectors “matchmaking” programme and an exciting VIP schedule, presents a much-needed platform for exchange and interaction between industry professionals and art enthusiasts to forge a more cohesive and open art scene within the Asia Pacific art markets.

Singapore – The Ideal Destination
At the heart of the cultural and commercial crossroads between the East and the West, Singapore is the perfect meeting place.

The city’s reputation as a premium lifestyle destination has grown with events like the FORMULA ONE night race and Asia Fashion Exchange and new developments such as the recently opened Marina Bay Sands. Often referred to as the “Switzerland of Asia”, Singapore is one of the world’s fastest growing economies, the private wealth management centre of Asia Pacific and possibly the world. It prides itself in having the second highest number of millionaires after Dubai and home of 7,000 multinational companies as well as Asia’s newest exclusive casino. The city is a leading luxury shopping paradise of Asia, boasting the region’s highest quality of life.

In addition, the explosion of contemporary art as a new form of investment, lifestyle and status symbol has had profound impact on Asia’s rise in prominence on the world stage. Well-positioned in terms of its strategic location, stability and infrastructure, Singapore is predestined to be a leading arts destination – and the Singapore government is investing greatly in key market infrastructure including new, upcoming museums such as The National Art Gallery, Singapore; Gillman Village, a new arts and creative businesses cluster which will be a hub for international galleries and arts businesses, and a must go destination in Asia for artists, art enthusiasts and collectors; Asia’s only and recently launched, state-of-the-art Singapore Freeport as well as on-going discussions with some of the top collectors of the world on establishing private museums in Singapore.

At the heart of these developments, Art Stage Singapore is regarded as a flagship private initiative which will catalyse the city’s transformation into a leading arts destination and has the backing of key Singapore government agencies driving the development of the city’s art industry – the Economic Development Board, the Singapore Tourism Board, the National Arts Council and the National Heritage Board.

Mr Rudolf said: “Singapore has a clear vision to become a leading Asian hub for the global contemporary art scene and the goal in the next five years is to be the leading art fair in Asia and a key event on the world calendar.”

Fair Highlights
Art Stage Singapore’s philosophy is built on two key cornerstones: a focus on quality through stringent selection and the presentation of art in context. Looking beyond commercial trends and easy saleability, Art Stage Singapore supports innovative artistic positions by providing a strong platform for the most interesting emerging artists and young galleries of the Asia Pacific region.

In addition, the fair showcases art in a historical context by including the very best of Asian modern art presented by carefully handpicked specialists. It also shows art in an artistic context through special projects and curated presentations.

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