Home Arts Galleries return to Miart in Milan, but play it safe

Galleries return to Miart in Milan, but play it safe

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A birthday cake imagined by Maurizio Cattelan and a live band welcomed visitors to the 27th edition of Miart (April 14-16), sending a clear message: things are back to normal for the fair after two hectic years of Covid. A sure sign, 169 galleries are taking part, ie 20 more than last year, and many of them foreign.

The London gallery owner Tommaso Corvi-Mora, director of Corvi Mora, has chosen to participate in only two fairs this year: Frieze and Miart. It features, as always, an almost monographic stand – in this case Des Ferris, mid-career painter, and sculptor John Lindell. The gallery won the Herno prize for best installation last year and, as usual, prices are low, between €5,000 and €12,000. On the Saturday of the fair, its penultimate day, Corvi Mora had sold half of the ceramics on display and two large paintings, including a number after the VIP day: “Usually the bulk of the sales take place on the first day of the fair , the day reserved for collectors, then slow down, but things seem to be changing,” says Corvi-Mora.

He is assisted by Thomas Brambilla, a drug dealer from Bergamo. “The first day, I didn’t sell anything”, he says, “then it was a crescendo, a strange trend compared to usual, but I’m certainly not complaining about it!”. Brambilla’s stand features Italian artists such as Marco Cingolani, Erik Saglia and Matteo Callegari, as well as international artists such as Jack Pierson, Wim Devoye and Lynda Benglis. “I’m happy to be here, for the gallery the last three editions have been a good result, Miart is a very active fair for us”, he says. The price range on the stand is between €8,000 and €200,000.

It’s also a good edition for Monica De Cardenas: “A lot of people came, with good international collectors and better sales than usual. Szűcs will end up in a Chinese collection, and we have also sold works by Diango Hernández, Fausto Gilberti and Edgar Orlaineta. The Crèvecœur gallery in Paris was present for the first time. Its owners, Axel Dibie and Alix Dionot-Morani, say collector interest peaks at around €30,000. In agreement, Franco Noero, from the eponymous gallery in Turin, which presents an elegant monographic stand by Jim Lambie. ,” he says.

Meanwhile, Intesa Sanpaolo, Miart’s long-time main partner, was present at this edition of the fair in the Intesa Sanpaolo Private Banking VIP lounge, where the exhibition Supernova 23organized by Luca Beatrice, was dedicated to young emerging artists.

With the aim of helping collectors better understand the issues of authentication and valuation of collections, Intesa Sanpaolo Private Banking organized, together with its art advisors from Eikonos Arte – Alberto Fiz and Marina Mojana – a series of three conferences on the laws around art and collecting, with the best experts in the field. Among them, Maria Grazia Longoni, partner in the capital of LCA Sudio Legale and head of its art law department, and Cristina Resti, art historian and expert in risk analysis, addressed the theme of the issues of acquisition, collection management and loan. works of art and the associated risks.

One of the most interesting takeaways from this conference is that once a work has been purchased and placed in a living space, it incurs risks associated with the normal course of everyday life. We tend to think that theft is the most impactful of all damaging events that could occur to a work, whereas, statistically, accidental damage such as falling from a wall, or contact with liquids or fire occur much more frequently.

Back in the aisles, important collectors and other VIPs, including Jacopo Etro, actor Costantino della Gherardesca, Gilberto and Rosa Sandretto and Carlo Clavarino, the president of the Aon Europe, Middle East and Africa group.

Speaking about the general level of this year’s fair, gallerist Antonio Borghese, from ABC-ARTE, who has spaces in Milan and Genoa, says: “It was certainly an edition with a lot of painting, few installations and hardly any videos, People took a more immediate and less ‘hard’ approach.

Reflecting on the past few years, fair director Nicola Riccardi says: “2021 was a disaster; in 2022, we made a big effort to keep prices low; this year, we have worked a lot on the curatorship of projects, beyond the commercial aspect, to establish a stronger dialogue with museums and institutions It is somewhat true that fairs with a lot of painting resemble large Salons from the beginning of the 20th century, but it is also a response to the rise of digital in 2020-21. is also easier to transport and deform and never gets old.”

She acknowledges that modern art this year has not been a highlight, with few key pieces on display. “Maybe the modern art dealers aren’t releasing the best things in anticipation of less uncertainty, but there’s also a need for new galleries for the modern, they’ve had less turnover and c is where I want to work for 2024.”

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