was officially presented in public at Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia in Madrid. The act was chaired by Luis Eduardo Cortés, President of IFEMAs Executive Committee; Fermín Lucas, Director General of IFEMA and Lourdes Fernández, Director of ARCOmadrid.
Feria de Madrid is holding the 29th International Contemporary Art Fair, ARCOmadrid_2010, from February 17th to 21st, making it once again the opening event in the international art fair calendar. This year the fair is hosting a total of 227 galleries from 25 countries and around three thousand artists with work covering all the current trends visible in the art world today. This year ARCOmadrid throws a special spotlight on its invitational programme, featuring a city for the very first time instead of a country. The focus this year is on Los Angeles, chosen because of its vitality and multiculturalism and its specific weight as one of the worlds art capitals.
ARCOmadrid is an excellent opportunity to rev up the engines of the art market, especially at a moment when we are seeing the first signs of recovery. According to latest reports from the Art Market Confidence Index (AMCI) drawn up by Artprice, prices have risen by 1.2% and the all-important confidence index among professionals is up by between 20% and 40% since last March. Working alongside a team of curators who are responsible for giving the fair its special character, the art fairs planning committee has been working with the goal of driving the art market forward. It wishes to underscore its reputation as a high-quality event with a complete cross-section of art to excite the interest of collectors and buyers. In this regard, the fair has prepared a Guest Collectors program in which it invites many major collectors from around the world to visit the fair and see what it has on offer.
Los Angeles, 21st-century metropolis
One of the most noteworthy new introductions at the upcoming edition of ARCOmadrid_2010 is the focus on Los Angeles as the fairs special invited guest. This is a new twist to its Panorama section, shifting from its usual focus on a country to a single city. The idea is present a more homogeneous portrait of whats happening in a specific urban area that is, in itself, one of the major art capitals of the USA. It is L.A.s dynamism energy and creative diversity that has situated it at the forefront of the worlds art market.
With a selection of 17 galleries, curated by Kris Kuramitsu and Christopher Miles, the difference in Panorama: Los Angeles lies in the selection of artists coming from different generations, backgrounds and degrees of fame, and a huge variety of works in terms of technique, genre and leaning. Above all else, the selection wished to faithfully reflect the vitality and diversity of the art scene in this great city. According to the curators, this 21st-century metropolis has an artistic culture with a huge cross-generational wealth, largely thanks to its influential position over the last few decades, its network of private art school and academies, as well as the art departments in public and private universities.
General Programme + ARCO 40
The core section of ARCOmadrid_2010 comprises General Program+ARCO40, featuring a selection of 170 galleries, chosen by the fairs Advisory Committee and subsequently confirmed by the fairs Planning Committee, showcasing works that provide a cross-section of the best of art from around the world.
ARCO40, a subsection of the General Program, brings exciting young artists from Spain and worldwide into a fruitful creative dialogue. True to their core mission to showcase emerging talents, these galleries weave an international network of the happening art of today and tomorrow. Galleries in this section are showing work by a maximum of three artists, in fixed 40m2 modules. Exhibiting alongside the galleries in the main section, these new cutting-edge works are sure to capture the attention of the public and of collectors and buyers at the fair.
Besides the General Program+ARCO 40, another cornerstone of ARCOmadrid_ 2010s innovation is its curated programs: SOLO PROJECTS, EXPANDED-BOX, CINEMALoop and PERFORMING ARCO which feature the latest trends in art.
Without any geographical or artistic boundaries, a team of 10 curators has been put together an eclectic selection of 34 projects for the SOLO PROJECTS section at ARCOmadrid_ 2010. Here we can expect to see the most emerging and experimental works of the moment. SOLO PROJECTS is predicated on conceptual discourses that look to explore and question the synergies of artists from all over the world and to open up a dialogue from highly diverse positions. This always interesting section contains a wealth of experimentation reflecting the concerns of contemporary artists.
This selection was made by Jacopo Crivelli Visconti, freelance curator, Brazil; Juan de Nieves, freelance curator, Spain; Sergio Edelsztein, director of The Center for Contemporary Art in Tel Aviv; Iván López Munuera, critic and freelance curator, Madrid; Shamin M. Momin, Associate Curator at the Whitney Museum of American Art; Adriano Pedrosa, freelance curator, writer and editor, Brazil; Susanne Neubauer, freelance curator, Germany; Maria Inés Rodríguez, chief curator at MUSAC (León), curator of Programation Satellite at Jeu de Paume and editor of Point dIronie, Paris, France; André Magnin, freelance curator, Paris; and Olesya Turkina, critic and exhibition curator, and Senior Research Fellow at the Russian State Museum in St Petersburg, Russia.
Yet again, this year ARCOmadrid_ 2010s EXPANDED BOX program is presenting works by artists using innovative new technologies and digital tools. The very best of new electronic art can be seen in the eight spaces comprising the EXPANDED BOX program, curated by Italian art critic and independent curator, Domenico Quaranta and sponsored by BEEP_Data logic.
For the third year running, performance art has its own space at ARCOmadrid. The program of PERFORMING ARCO, sponsored by Mango, and chosen by its artistic advisor Javier Duero, gives the visiting public a chance to contemplate various live performances and catch up with happening tendencies in live art taking place on the Spanish and international scene.
Rounding off the exciting curated programs this year is CINEMALoop, a section dedicated exclusively to video art and audiovisual installations. Selected by the freelance curators, Carolina Grau and Paul Young, this section, coordinated for the first time with LOOP, the International Video Art Fair and Festival in Barcelona is looking to consolidate the discourse of video at the art fair. CINEMALoop is divided into three sections: first of all, video installations brought by three European galleries; secondly, the loop screening of various video art pieces; and finally, an exhibition of videos on various individual screens which spectators can choose from.
The final piece in the art fair is the section ARCO Instituciones, aimed at publicising the work of public and private organisations actively supporting the art world through collecting. Moreover, visitors have a space for publications on culture and art, especially contemporary art, all grouped together in the Art Publishers and Magazines sections.
In parallel with all these sections and programs is the annual Experts Forum, now in its eight year, which brings together artists, collectors, critics, curators, theorists and other players in the art world to discuss issues of interest. The forum rounds off ARCOmadrid_ 2010, the International Contemporary Art Fair, a must visit event for anyone seriously interested in discovering the latest in contemporary art.