Art Basel Hong Kong
Definitely my favorite Art Basel of the year!
Mesmerizing, with an array of colors that inspire and make you want to pick up a brush and paints and just find a canvas somewhere; a paper, a wall, a plate, a sheet, or a piece of wood.
A truly impressive fair, maybe a bit overwhelming at times, massive, and with thousands of visitors walking the halls daily! I was mostly inspired by the colors, fabrics, textures, and the sizes of the art on display. I will let the photos speak for themselves.
In the first few hours of the VIP showing, and prior to the public opening of the fair, a Willem de Kooning painting was sold for a staggering $35 million!! It was the talk of the show, as the selling gallery had decided, contrary to many peoples expectations, and on a great hunch that Hong Kong would be the market for this work. Read more details here
Another interesting event was the push to (almost) fame of the beautifully talented 13 year old prodigy Evan Sharma. Arts Effects held an auction at Art Basel, in which they sold his Portrait of Basquiat for $6,500. Sharma has been called the next Picasso by some, and his talent is incredible for his age. A name to look out for, maybe?
The galleries I spoke to were happy with their sales, and the general vibe was that the Asian market was more open to Western art than in the past years. Chinese collectors are definitely buying more international art, but still, what I found interesting during the public days, after the VIP previews, was seeing where most people were gathered in huge numbers. It was to check out certain galleries that carried a specific form of art, and although we always say that 'art is universal', it might not be that true after all. Culture and heritage do affect one's taste for art, and I did find that many of the locals were indeed attracted to the more artifact, trinket like sculptures, resembling kitsch Chinese gimcrack.