Friday, March 14, 2014

TEFAF Opens!

From my view, the hundreds waiting for the noon opening far exceeded last year's interest.
TEFAF opens as art market soars
By Augustus Mayhew

Whether the spectacular early spring, considering last year's snowy deep freeze, or the Guido Reni oil-on-copper painting at Jean-Luc Baroni Ltd., the Damien Hirst, the recently discovered portrait of the Begum of Oudh by English painter George Duncan Beechey at Amir Mohtashemi, or the Emil Nolde watercolour at Beck & Eggeling, the aisles were filled within the first hour for The European Fine Art Fair's opening 2014 Vernissage at Maastricht.
The entrance hall featured a work by Alexander Calder.
On the eve of today's day-long event attended by more than 10,000 fairgoers, TEFAF's foundation released its annual market study documenting that the global €47.4 billion art and antiques market has nearly reached the same levels as the pre-recession boom years. As several hundred awaited for the gates to open at noon on Thursday, the report named Americans the world's leading buyers and ascertained the escalating values were due to rising prices for major Post-War and Contemporary artists.

According to the report, the 11% growth in the value of the Post-War and Contemporary sector is attributed to the highest-ever auction sales total of €4.9 billion with a significant portion of it paid as record prices for artists such as Francis Bacon, Roy Lichtenstein and Andy Warhol. According to the report, the US had 38% of the world market. The US accounts for 42% of the world's 32 million millionaires with at least 600,000 of this global group tagged as high-level art collector members.
Willem van Roijen, the chairman of TEFAF's board, and Titia Vellenga, public relations and marketing manager for TEFAF.
The Met, The National Gallery, Seattle Art Museum, Portland Art Museum, Los Angeles County Art Museum, and the Bruce Museum are among the US institutions whose members, directors and trustees are attending TEFAF as part of a museum-sponsored tour.

Trailing the US, China's share was slightly down at 24%., although China remains the most important of all the newer markets with a turnover of €11.5 billion in 2013. Chinese paintings and calligraphy are the largest sector of the market. Non-payment by winning bidders at auction remains a persistent problem with only 56% of lots at Mainland Chinese auction houses being paid for within six months.

The UK remained in third place with 20% despite a drop of 3% while the European Union also dropped by 3% to 32%.
Once again this year, the fair lived up to being the most beautifully staged fair in the world.
The aisles were landscaped with a spectrum of tulips.
"After recovering strongly in 2010, the global art market has experienced mixed performance within different sectors and between nations," says Dr. Clare McAndrew in her report for TEFAF. "Some sectors and individual businesses have reached peaks well in excess of those achieved in 2007, while others are still struggling to regain momentum."
The international press were well represented.
Among Thursday's reported early sales, Galerie Ulrich Fiedler has placed the 1902 gilded oak Carlo Bugatti Chair designed for the Le arti decorativi internazionali del nuovo secolo' in Turin, priced at 350,000 Euros. A significant Chinese drum stand priced at 2.5 million Euros is said to have been sold at Vanderven Oriental Art. A 1st millennium BC "Amlash" spouted pottery vessel with a burnished surface attributed to the Marlik culture in the Southwestern Caspian region and tagged at 100,000 Euros has also apparently found a buyer at Galerie Kevorkian.

Still available after a brisk first day, Damien Hirst's Black Sheep With Golden Horn (2009), described as a ram in formaldehyde, priced at 2.25 million Euros by Tomasso Brothers Fine Art.

Here is a look around some early moments of the fair.
American board member Michel Witmer with board member Konrad Bernheimer.  Witmer gave the press a highlights preview of the fair before it opened for the Vernissage.
TEFAF trustee and gallerist Johnny van Haeften.
Paul Laster, with Art in America and Art AsiaPacific.
Angela Schuster, senior editor at Art +Auction.
Titia Vellenga and Michel Witmer.
Paul Herring and John Herring.
Anne Marie Monin and Pascal Zuber.
Gallerist Otto Naumann.
Axel Vervoordt, right, being interviewed at his stand.
Several of the stands were as brilliantly crafted as the artwork they presented.
Veronique Bamps, Monaco.  Mid-19th century multi-color diamond brooch, from the Estate of Elsa Schiaparelli. 85,000 Euros.
A La Veille Russie, New  York.
A La Veille Russie, New  York. George III gilt bronze clock and automaton in the form of an elephant.  The maker is thought to be Hubert Martinet.
A La Veille Russie, New  York. Emerald and diamond diadem, c. 1910. $195,000 US.
A La Veille Russie, New  York.  Late 19th century multi-color  diamond dragonfly pin. $60,000 US.
Marlborough Gallery, New York. Artist descending a Staircase, 2012.  Clive Head, artist.
Galerie Patrice Tringano, Paris.
Galerie Boulakia, Paris. A 1939 painting by Ferdinand Leger, asking 1.4 million Euros.
Jean-Luc Baroni Ltd., London. 
Jean-Luc Baroni Ltd., London.  A View of the Vredeveldt Mansion.  H. K. Schepper, dated 1767.
Otto Naumann, New York.
Konrad Bernheimer-Colnagi, Munich and London.
Konrad Bernheimer-Colnaghi, Munich and London.
Richard Green, London. Portrait d'homme ... 16th century oil on panel. Corneille de Lyon, artist.
Richard Green, London. The peasant lawyer. Dated 1615. Pieter Breughel the Younger.
Adam Williams Fine Art, New York.
Connaught Brown-Osborne Samuel, London.
Waterhouse & Dodd, London & New York.
Boizo, Amsterdam.
Galerie Henze & Ketterer, Bern. Dance of Death. Ernst Ludwig Kirchner. 3.7 million Euros.
Galerie Henze & Ketterer, Bern.
Van de Wwghe, New York.
Sperone Westwater Gallery, New York.  Angela Westwater and Walter Biggs, managing director.
Sperone Westwater Gallery, New York.  Divine Details, 2014.  Jan Worst, artist.
Landau Fine Art, Montreal.
Gallerist Jacques de la Beraudiere, Paris.
Galerie Jacques de la Beraudiere, Paris.
Axel  Vervoordt.
Theo Daatselaar, Zaltbommel, Netherlands.
Dickinson, London.  "The asking on the van Gogh is somewhere in the 8-figures, Euros, of course."
TEFAF's Museum Restoration Fund assists private, public, and academic museums worldwide.
Photographs by Augustus Mayhew.

Augustus Mayhew is the author of Lost in Wonderland – Reflections on Palm Beach.