Apollo Magazine

London’s art fair season begins – but with a few casualties

A round-up of this week's top art market stories: LAPADA and START Art Fair return to London, but Multiplied and Art16 are no more

The End #2 (2014), by Taiwanese artist Su Yu-Xin, part of the ‘Future Island’ project organised by Mehta Bell Projects at START Art Fair

The End #2 (2014), by Taiwanese artist Su Yu-Xin, part of the ‘Future Island’ project organised by Mehta Bell Projects at START Art Fair. Courtesy of Mehta Bell Projects

LAPADA and START Art Fair return to London | To London, and an art market awakening from August slumber. Limbering up for next month’s Frieze Week, next week sees two quite different, lesser-known season opener fairs. Though rarely mentioned in the same breath, the eighth LAPADA Art & Antiques Fair (13–18 September) in Berkeley Square, Mayfair, and the third START Art Fair (15–18 September) at Chelsea’s Saatchi Gallery share a youthful direction and eclectic content.

Mouvement (1937), Joseph Lacasse. £45,000 from Whitford Fine Art at LAPADA Art & Antiques Fair

LAPADA is a UK-based association of art and antiques dealers and, on the limited budget of such an organisation, fair director Mieka Sywak and the LAPADA team create an impressive event of 100 member dealers. ‘Cross-disciplinary fairs such as LAPADA provide a convenient and enjoyable way to discover works from a wide selection of disciplines, including jewellery, furniture, carpets, tapestries, antiquities, clocks, ceramics, silver and fine art in one place,’ says Sywak.

Testament to the quiet substance of this predominantly mid-market event is the fact that stands sold out several months ago and some dealerships join the association simply to take part at the fair. Exhibitors include Whitford Fine Art, based in nearby St James’s and regulars on the international fair circuit, who will offer Mouvement (1937) by Joseph Lacasse, from the artist’s estate and for sale for the first time.

In Chelsea, START Art Fair directed by Niru Ratnam focuses on ‘emerging artists and new art scenes’. This year it features 70 galleries from 40 cities, including two Taiwanese galleries who complement a START Project about Taiwanese art, and two galleries from Georgia.

The End #2 (2014), by Taiwanese artist Su Yu-Xin, part of the ‘Future Island’ project organised by Mehta Bell Projects at START Art Fair. Courtesy of Mehta Bell Projects

‘I was born in South Asia so I’m also really glad that we’ve got two of India’s most interesting young galleries – THE LOFT at Lower Parel [Mumbai] and Karin Weber Gallery [HK, London, Mumbai, Berlin],’ says Ratnam. He’s particularly intrigued by the emerging sectors in Taiwan, Korea, and India, and also Eastern Europe. ‘What’s interesting is really new art scenes springing up in the wake of new museum and art infrastructure, so we’ve got a focused project looking at the work of five young Qatari artists. What’s often overlooked is how developing the arts infrastructure of a region then inspires people to become artists.’

…but Multiplied and Art16 are no more | The art fair world is cramped and competitive, so casualties are inevitable. This Frieze week, Christie’s South Kensington will not run its prints and editions fair, Multiplied, ‘due to its re-scheduled London auction calendar’. However, no auctions are slated at the South Kensington saleroom during that week.

The contemporary art fair Art16 will also not take place next May at Olympia in West London. According to a statement on the fair’s website, ‘The Organisers of Art16 have decided that there will be no edition of the Fair in 2017. They are now working with both galleries and collectors in order to develop a much enhanced fair going forward and further announcements will be made in the coming months.’

Drouot porters jailed | The saga that plagued Paris’s Hôtel Drouot for eight years finally came to an end on 6 September as 38 former employees, the majority of them porters, were convicted of stealing items and jailed for up to three years. French police received a tip-off in 2009 that the so-called cols rouges at the communal saleroom stole artworks from clients after they had been consigned for sale.

Martin Klosterfelde, new Senior Director and Senior Specialist in Sotheby’s European Contemporary Art team

Sotheby’s set sights on Germany with new hire | Former Berlin gallery owner Martin Klosterfelde will join Sotheby’s European contemporary art team in September 2016 as a senior director and senior specialist. Klosterfelde closed his gallery in 2013 after 18 years, and became director and international art specialist at Phillips, based in Berlin. He trained as an auctioneer earlier this year. Though based in London, he will work alongside Bastienne Leuthe, appointed as a senior director and head of the auction house’s contemporary art department for Germany earlier this summer. Designs on the German market perhaps?

…and heads north with ‘Beyond Limits’ | Every autumn for the past decade, Sotheby’s have joined forces with Chatsworth, Derbyshire, for ‘Beyond Limits’, a large-scale modern and contemporary outdoor sculpture selling exhibition. Zaha Hadid’s Lilas pavilion, created for the Serpentine summer party in 2007, take centre stage this year at the show, which opens tomorrow (10 September) and runs until 30 October. Prices for the works range from $150,000 to $5 million, and the Hadid pavilion is pitched at ‘over $1.5 million’.

Lilas (2007), Zaha Hadid at ‘Beyond Limits’ at Chatsworth. Priced at over $1.5 million. Image courtesy Sotheby’s

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