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Art Paris announces record attendance, a critical success and good sales results
Art Paris 2019 © Marc Domage.

PARIS.- Playing host to 150 galleries from 20 countries from April 4th-7th 2019, the 21st edition of Art Paris received a record number of 63,257 visitors from 45 different countries, an 8% increase compared to 2018.

There was a lot of enthusiasm for this 2019 edition that paid tribute to women artists and Latin America and it was apparent right from the opening night as some 18,575 guests descended upon the fair including numerous celebrities: actresses (Monica Bellucci, Gong Li, Catherine Frot), figures from the worlds of politics (Benjamin Griveaux, Brigitte Macron, Franck Riester) and business (Henri-François Pinault, Laurent Dassault), collectors, curators and museum directors (Caroline Bourgeois, Chris Dercon, Sandra Hegedus, Marin Karmitz, Laurent Lebon, Patricia Marshall, Suzanne Pagé and Alfred Pacquement to name but a few). The fair was also pleased to welcome 94 friends of museum groups and art circles mainly from France, but also from abroad. These included: the Cercle International/Comités d’acquisition du MNAM Centre Pompidou (Paris), The Friends of the National Museum of Women in the Arts (Washington D.C.), the Patrons of the Amon Carter Museum of American Art (Texas), as well as Fluxus Art Projects and Spirit Now (London). Around one hundred specialised guided tours were organised for collectors with the help of the Observatoire de l’Art Contemporain and almost 700 French and international journalists were accredited during the fair.

A critical success and increased status
All the visitors expressed their appreciation of this year’s two themes. Curated by AWARE, “Une scène française d’un autre genre” paid tribute to women artists. The focus took the form of a visit circuit featuring an abundance of women artists from the post-war period to the present day. By giving these artists visibility it was a real game changer. “Southern Stars, an exploration of Latin American Art”, curated by Valentina Locatelli, provided an overview of the wealth of artistic creativity in Latin America and explored the continent both through the gallery’s exhibits and several parallel projects. These included video projections, installations by Marcelo Brodsky (ARTCO Gallery), Nicola Costantino (CCK /Institut français d’Argentine), Betsabeé Romero (Galeria Saro Léon) and Ricardo Rendón (Galerie Wenger), as well as conferences at the Maison de l’Amérique Latine, not forgetting the wonderful presentation of the “Amazons” from Catherine Petitgas’ collection, which were on show in France for the first time and which resonated with the theme presented by AWARE.

Many collectors highlighted the fair’s convivial atmosphere and excellent organisation, the increasing participation of major galleries (notably with the arrival of such leading names as Art : Concept, Ceysson & Bénétière, Jérome Poggi, Praz-Delavallade, Filomena Soares and La Patinoire Royale - Valérie Bach), as well as the possibility of discovering or rediscovering numerous artists, both modern and contemporary, at affordable prices. Many visitors described Art Paris as a fair that expresses a real passion for art, rather than seeing art purely in speculative terms. It has definitely become the spring art event that’s not to be missed.

The fair’s rise in importance was accompanied by intense activity in terms of public relations and communication: more than 70 videos showcasing the work of galleries were produced over the five day period, in addition to the interviews carried out by Museum TV, which is one of the fair’s partners.

Satisfactory sales results
In spite of the yellow vests and access to the Champs Elysées being blocked on Saturday April 6th, which put many foreign collectors off coming to Paris, sales were satisfactory overall and even excellent on the last day of the fair, which was attended by 10,000 visitors.

Amongst other things, the fair’s many monographic exhibitions drew the attention of collectors. There were 46 solo shows this year and several sold out, notably at Madrid-based gallery Michel Soskine Inc that sold all of its works by 1950s Spanish painter Angel Alonso (between 4,500 and 70,000 euros), L’ Paris which sold 18 works by Bosnian artist Radenko Milak (between 4,000 and 30 000 euros), not forgetting Un-spaced that found purchasers for all its sculptures by Brazilian artist Tulio Pinto. Several galleries, such as Daniel Templon, 313 Art Project (that sold a Lee Ufan for 100,000 euros), Nathalie Obadia, Paris-Beijing, Les Filles du Calvaire, Rabouan Moussian, Vallois, Miquel Alzuetta and Mark Hachem (which saw purchasers buy one work after another by its Latin American artists Cruz-Diez, Peres Flores and Soto for between 12,000 and 130,000 euros) reported that they had had their best results since their first participation in Art Paris. This year’s new arrivals were also successful with, for example, La Patinoire Royale - Valérie Bach selling several pieces by its women artists amongst others, notably an Alice Anderson (between 7,000 and 22,000 euros) and a Gisela Colon (for around 20,000 euros).

The next edition of Art Paris Art Fair will take place at the Grand Palais from April 2nd-5th 2020. After Latin America, Art Paris will continue its exploration of the Southern Stars, by showcasing the flourishing Spanish and Portuguese art scenes. The fair will also be renewing its “overview of the French scene” entrusted to a prominent curator.

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