Thursday night (12th March) was the opening of the finest art fair in the world. Nowhere else in the world can you buy the finest chinese ceramics, Delft porcelain, baroque paintings and a contemporary installation work under one roof!
The European Fine Art Fair dispenses with the fleeting and the fashionable and embraces all works of art equally – a rarity in this Contemporary leaning art-world where art fairs are cropping up ubiquitously. I was fortunate enough to see every single stand of the fair during the vetting of Impressionist & Modern paintings and sculpture last week. The quality, as ever, is very strong but perhaps the main problem this fair has is the bad timing of Basel Hong Kong which takes place over the same time period have a peek at this site. Only a few of the galleries have had to split their stock between the two, but it has led to some slightly ‘watered down’ stands on display.
My favourite stands were not those with the most expensive paintings nor the biggest names – I think the showcase, to the back of the fair and specifically for those galleries starting out, is a marvel. Eric Gillis had some beautiful works: a Seurat work on paper and a superb Vuillard were very strong. My highlights should you be heading out for the final weekend are as follows:
Hopkins/Gradiva have a very rare, relatively large Moreau depicting Salome that should not be missed.
Dickinson have a rare 1888 Van Gogh work on paper (which would compliment Alon Zakaim’s Van Gogh beautifully if you have deep pockets).
Naumann’s stand has an excellent sculpture by Canessi that the head of sculpture at the National gallery of Scotland, Patrick Elliot, deemed the finest work at the fair by a distance.
Lowell Libson have a beautiful William Blake drawing – small but perfectly formed.
Two works on Applicat Prazan’s stand were supreme examples: an early blue Soulages and a peak career de Stael.
Borzo have wonderful works of art – all minimal and spare: Schoonhaven and de Vries – a Dutch treat.
Hugh Gibson is showing the only first-rate Cezanne watercolour – well worth a look.
Landau’s stand is superb as ever with a 1940s Miro my favourite Modern picture in the fair.
Don’t miss Night Fishing; a show put together by the gallerist Hidde Van Seggelen exhibiting some of the best contemporary sculptors working at present – from Tony Cragg to Nam June Paik to Christina Iglesias.
Enjoy the Fair and remember: always consult an expert before buying to avoid costly mistakes.