Booming sales at Paris Photo's 23rd edition
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Booming sales at Paris Photo's 23rd edition
Philippe De Gobert, Le Havre, 1310, 2019, Tirage numérique, 104x148, Philippe de Gobert / Courtesy Galerie Aline Vidal.

PARIS.- The 23rd edition of Paris Photo, which closed its doors on Sunday 10 November and set a new attendance record with more than 70 000 visitors welcomed in 4 days at the Grand Palais.

The leading international photography fair has been unanimously applauded for showcasing an exceptional standard of work and saw exceptional sales throughout the course of the event.

Bringing together 213 exhibitors, including 33 publishers, from 31 countries, Paris Photo once again reinforced its position as the unrivalled meeting place for artists, institutions, collectors and amateurs from all over the world.

Florence Bourgeois, Director, and Christoph Wiesner, artistic director commented: ”This year, more than ever, Paris Photo was the international meeting point for photography. Nearly half of our visitors, including public and private collectors, joined us from abroad. We received museums from all over the world and an important number of artists, both French and international. The energy of the fair is the result of the exchanges and discussions between galleries, artists, publishers, curators, photographers and people passionate about photography. We are delighted to be the event that brings together the best of photography. The 1st edition of Paris Photo New York will allow us to recreate this effervescence around photography on the other side of the Atlantic from April 2 to 5.”

In Paris, the 23rd edition of Paris Photo welcomed 70 598 visitors, a new attendance record, and a 2.5% increase in comparison to the previous year.

One of the distinguishing factors at Paris Photo is the museum-quality presentations which make the fair particularly attractive to institutions, collectors and the public at large. More than 45 galleries chose to present solo shows and duo shows, developing the understanding of their artists and providing them a greater visibility on an international scale.

Significant sales took place in all 5 sectors of the fair: the main, the book and the Film sectors, as well as PRISMES, dedicated to serial works, large formats and installations, and Curiosa. This year, Curiosa was devoted to emerging artists and was under the direction of Osei Bonsu who was recently nominated Curator of International Art at the Tate Modern.

In the main sector, Thomas Zander Gallery sold to an American museum a historic series by Renger Patzsch for €160, 000 as well as a series by Helen Levitt. The gallery reported that 60% of reservations and sales at the fair were made by acquisition committees from international museums. Pace/McGill Gallery from New York sold works by each of the artists it exhibited, including a print by Robert Franck for €125,000. Three important vintages of Helen Levitt selling for more than €100,000 each were purchased. Danziger Gallery reported numerous sales including a print run of Dorothea Lange which sold for €75,000. A large Sigmar Polke format sold for €385,000 at Kicken. In the PRISMES sector, the Thierry Bigaignon gallery sold all of Yannig Hedel's works for between €45,000 and €90,000. The installation of the SubREAL Group proposed by the Jecza gallery was a great success with institutions. In the Curiosa sector, La Forest Divonne gallery sold its entire stand dedicated to Elsa & Johanna.

This unrivalled event, dedicated to photography, attracted representatives from more than a 100 museums and international institutions - from Europe, North America (US, Canada), Asia, South America and the Middle East. Directors of Museums and curators came from MoMA, Metropolitan Museum of Art, LACMA, J. Paul Getty Museum, Philadelphia Museum of Art, SF MoMA, Smithsonian Institute, Art Institute of Chicago, Guggenheim, Hammer, Fine Arts Museum of Ontario, National Gallery of Canada - Ottawa, MALBA, Argentina, Brooklyn Museul, Museo de Arte - Lima, M+ Hong Kong, Center for Creative Photography (Tucson), Yuz Museum in Shanghai, the National Gallery of Australia, Tel Aviv Museum of Art, FOAM in Amsterdam, Hayward Gallery (London), Leopold Museum (Vienna), Istanbul Museum of Art, MAMCO (Geneva), MAXXI (Rome), Rijksmuseum (Amsterdam), Tate (London), Serpentine Gallery (London),the National Gallery. French museums were also present in large numbers: Centre Pompidou, Musée d'Orsay, Fondation Louis Vuitton, the Palais de Tokyo, the Mamac (Nice), Musée d'Art moderne de la Ville de Paris, Musée du Louvre, MEP, Jeu de Paume, Fondation Cartier.

The Platform conversations were a great success thanks to the participating artists and leading specialists in the field, such as Hans Ulrich Obrist, David Campany, Mari Katayama, Victor Burgin, Samuel Fosso, Joseph Koudelka, Ming Smith and Tyler Mitchell. An afternoon of conversations led by Fannie Escoulen was dedicated to the visibility of women photographers.

This year more than 330 internationally renowned artists were present in the book sector signature program. The public came in great numbers to meet Massimo Vitalli, Nadav Kander, Yan Morvan, Sabine Weiss, Sophie Calle, Antoine d'Agata, Martin Parr, Bruce Gilden, Todd Hido, Roger Ballen, William Klein, Pieter Hugo, Pierre and Gilles... Many publishers recorded a significant increase in their sales.

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