Around the Galleries.
The 20/21 British Art Fair has had a few testing years; it lost its long-term premises at the Royal College of Art in January 2016 and was forced to cancel the edition of that year, reopening in 2017 in the less spacious setting of the Mall Galleries in St James's. However, having been purchased earlier this year by Robert and Johnny Sandelson, the rebranded British Art Fair arrives this month at the Saatchi Gallery, its new permanent home in Chelsea (20-23 September).
The focus remains modern and contemporary British art. Fifty dealers--up from 34 last year, and with some prestigious names returning for the fair's new incarnation--hope to pique the interest of collectors. Two galleries present special exhibitions; Jonathan Clark offers more than 25 works by Ivon Hitchens (Fig. 1), charting the course of the celebrated landscape painter's development through his career. Meanwhile, Piano Nobile presents a rare opportunity to see sculptures by Anthony Caro alongside paintings by John Golding; the two friends were instrumental in elucidating the principles of American abstract painting for mid-century British artists. Elsewhere, works by everyone from Vanessa Bell to R.B. Kitaj are on show--and don't miss Mark Gertler's commission for Cadbury's Famous Artists series, Still life with pears, on show at Richard Green.
LAPADA celebrates the 10th anniversary of its Art & Antiques Fair this autumn, as the event returns to Berkeley Square from 14-19 September. This year's edition promises as great a variety of work as ever, with some 100 galleries and dealers presenting everything from antique furniture to contemporary painting. At this year's talks and events programme, speakers will address topics as diverse as the history of chairs and 18th-century porcelain. The headline lecture is again provided by the Ashmolean Museum, which returns as LAPADA's cultural partner, and will take as its subject the museum's upcoming exhibition Spellbound: Magic, Ritual and Witchcraft. Some exhibitors' displays blend old and new, decorative and fine arts. Didier Marien, the tapestry and carpet specialist and owner of Boccara in Paris, presents a tapestry created by Mortlake, the renowned 17th-century English manufacturers, and a 19th-century Aubusson rug. He also brings one of the standout works of this year's fair--Nocturne Matinale, a vast, colourful, geometric tapestry of1970 by Sonia Delaunay (Fig. 2). Willow Gallery, meanwhile, offers an opportunity to see still lifes by Marc Chagall and the Scottish Colourist S.J. Peploe side by side.
Antiques include everything from a 'Boulle' marquetry gueridon, extensively decorated with tortoiseshell and gilt-bronze--part of the typically strong offering by Butchoff--to an architectural trumeau by Piero Fornasetti, designed in collaboration with Gio Ponti (the pre-eminent Italian architect and designer of the 1960s and '70s). I. Franks brings a silver presentation ewer of 1909 by Elkington & Co., with a relief of Orpheus taming the beasts with his lyre. For collectables, head to Hampton Antiques, where a group of 1920s car mascots is on display.
There is also a solid range of British painting at the fair. John Iddon brings a recent Hockney lithograph, while Long & Ryle presents work by contemporary artists, including David Wightman and John Monks. For more traditional paintings head to the Parker Gallery; among the highlights here is an equine scene by Stubbs.
Heralding the start of the autumn season for the galleries of Brussels' Sablon quarter is Brussels Art Square (21-23 September). The collaborative event partners each year with a different European country; at this edition 14 galleries from the Netherlands stage exhibitions across 52 galleries in the Belgian capital. They cover everything from archaeology to taxidermy, with a strong showing of Old Master works and Renaissance sculptures. Be sure to catch Darwin, Sinke & van Tongeren at Art Sablon--the Haarlem-based taxidermists employ 17th-century techniques to create dramatic tableaux, and sold out a show of 39 pieces in 2015 to Damien Hirst.
Further south in Europe, WOPART returns to the Italian-Swiss town of Lugano (20-23 September). The fair is dedicated to works on paper, with more than 90 galleries presenting pieces from antiquity to the present day; don't miss Galleria d'Arte Maggiore for the compelling cross-hatched sketches of Giorgio Morandi. Heading east, the 13th edition of Contemporary Istanbul comes to the Turkish capital with more than 80 galleries exhibiting some 300 artists (20-23 September); modern masters from Andre Masson to Andy Warhol appear alongside recent works by Turkish artists.
As September draws to a close, the eyes of the art world turn to Hong Kong and Fine Art Asia--the continent's foremost fair. Some 100 dealers from Asia, Europe and the US present paintings, sculpture and antiques from across the world (29 September-2 October). Rossi & Rossi stands out from the roster this year; it brings a selection of Hindu and Buddhist works ranging from distemper paintings on cloth with rich Buddhist iconographies, to a 14th-century gilt-bronze portrait shrine of Dragpa Sherab, the abbot of Densatil Monastery in Tibet (Fig. 3). Taipei-based Lucky Jewelry Co. offers a Hindustani 19th-century brush washer, carved from jade with tiger's head finials, while David Aaron brings a silver-gilt Sasanian jar decorated with dancing women in bas-relief, dating to the 5th-7th century. This year, for the first time, Ink Asia 2018 is staged in the same venue alongside Fine Art Asia. Dedicated to contemporary ink painting, the event features a special retrospective of Lui Shou-kwan (1919-75). His delicate depictions of Hong Kong's Aberdeen district are a joy.
If you're in the French capital for La Biennale Paris (8-16 September; previewed on p. 49), there are a number of gallery shows worth visiting. Thaddaeus Ropac hosts 'Fabula', a solo show of the German sculptor Stephan Balkenhol, while Galerie J. Kugel presents an exhibition devoted to 'Pique' the decorative technique pioneered in Naples in the first half of the 18th century that combines gold, tortoiseshell and mother-of-pearl. Finally, along the Quai Voltaire, Franck Baulme Fine Arts hosts an exhibition of European works from the i6th-i9th centuries.
Caption: Fig. 1. Blue and Yellow II, 1938, Ivon Hitchens (1893-1979), oil on canvas, 50x75cm. Jonathan Clark at the British Art Fair
Caption: Fig. 2. Nocturne Matinale, 1970, Sonia Delaunay (1885-1979), wool tapestry, 175 x 183cm Didier Marien at LADADA Art & Antiques Fair
Caption: Fig. 3. Portrait of Dragpa Sherab (1310-70), c. 1370, Tibet, gilt-bronze, ht23cm. Rossi & Rossi at Fine Art Asia
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|Date:||Sep 1, 2018|
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