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Refocused opening days pay dividends for exhibitors at TEFAF Maastricht 2018
Loan Exhibition Amsterdam Museum. Photography Natascha Libbert.

HELVOIRT.- TEFAF Maastricht 2018 saw a new lease of life injected into the Fair following a revision of the Fair Preview. This year, for the first time the opening was spread over two days: an Early Access Day on Thursday March 8th and a Preview Day on Friday March 9th. Over 12,000 visitors attended during the first two days, with 5,000 attending the Early Access Day. The feedback has been extremely positive with many sales reported during the first two days of the Fair. Exhibitor Thomas Heneage (Stand 384) said ‘we have had the best sales at the start of the Fair in over 27 years’. TEFAF Maastricht continues until Sunday 18th March, at the MECC.

Sales were reported from the first moments of the Fair, which opened on Thursday 8th March. Tomasso Brothers Fine Art (Stand 304) sold a large oil-on-canvas by Giovanni Battista Cipriani (1727-1785) depicting Castor and Pollux, with an asking price in the region of €425,000, which sold to a private collector. Alongside this, the gallery made an important sale to a new buyer, a private European collector, of a pair of monumental marble lion groups attributed to Giovanni Battista Foggini (1652 – 1725) and his workshop. The sculptures, depicting a lion attacking a horse and a lion attacking a bull, had an asking price in the region of €1.75 million.

The Dutch museum, Singer Laren acquired Takken met appels,1952-1953 by Charley Toorop (1891-1955), one of the best works by the artist, which she painted in her garden. The work was sold by Douwes Fine Art (Stand 372) and is an important addition to the museum collection and will bolster their offering of modern Dutch master works. In addition, The Weiss Gallery (Stand 348) sold a fine portrait of Emerentia de la Kethulle, née van Ravenswaay (1593-1634), by Paulus Moreelse (1571-1638), oil on panel, to a new, English private collector Ben Janssens Oriental Art (Stand 202) reported exceptionally high levels of sales. The gallery sold in excess of 40 works during the first two days, including a Northern Wei/Eastern Wei horse for €50,000 to a European collector. Sales to public institutions were reported throughout the Fair. Another highlight was a sale to the Rijksmuseum of a wax model of the fountain of Palazzo Pitti, 1556, by Bartolomeo Ammannati (1511 – 1592). This distinctive wax work had an asking price of €700,000 and was sold by Benjamin Proust Fine Art Ltd (Stand 246).

New York based Demisch Danant (Stand 610) sold two exceptional pieces of furniture, their two catalogue pieces, – a desk, created in 1974, by Janine Abraham & Dirk Jan Rol, and a wall library by André Renou and Jean-Pierre Génisset, which was awarded the Grand Prix and Gold Medal at the Brussels International Exposition in 1958 and which came from an apartment decorated by the same designers. Both works went to private collectors from the US.

Also within TEFAF Design, Galerie kreo (Stand 614) sold one of the newest works of the Fair, “7.30pm” Evening, created in 2017, by Hella Jongerius. The handwoven paper work was recently on display at the Design Museum, London, and was sold to a private, non-European collector.

Patrick Derom (Stand 449) presented a solo show of works by Belgian sculptor Pol Bury (1922 – 2005), and sold over 10 works during the opening days. The gallery wanted to present Bury’s work to a wider, international audience and as a result of exhibiting the works at TEFAF Maastricht sold to private collectors from France, Italy, Belgium and The Netherlands.

Sales were reported throughout Ancient Art, including at The Merrin Gallery (Stand 430), who sold a 2nd century BC – 2nd century AD over-life size foot from a monumental statue to a private collector for around €250,000. Charles Ede (Stand 426) sold continuously since the moment the Fair opened; two sales highlights were an Egyptian Ptolemaic Period head, c.332-30 BC, which had an asking price of €85,000, and an Athenian fragment of a head, 4th century BC, which had an asking price of €50,000. Next to Ancient Art is the newest section of the Fair, TEFAF Tribal where Donald Ellis (Stand 128) sold a grease bowl in the form of a baby bird, dated c.1800-1830, for €285,000 to a private collector.

Rare maps specialist Daniel Crouch Rare Books (Stand 702), located in TEFAF Paper, sold an atlas described as ‘the greatest and finest atlas ever published’ by Johannes Blaeu, between 1662 – 1665. The work, published in Amsterdam, had an asking price of €730,000.

Participants in TEFAF Showcase, the section devoted to recently established galleries, all reported making sales to new collectors, a great start for their first participation in TEFAF Maastricht. Of note, Galerie LeBeau (Stand S1) sold a chair by Brazilian designer Jorge Zalszupin (b.1922), who was a pioneer in using carved wood in his designs; alongside this, Librairie Camille Sourget (Stand S5) sold three series of publications on English birds; all three were sold to one European collector.

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