Art Paris Sees Uptick in New Exhibitors as the City’s Contemporary Scene Swells

The fair sees a 30 percent increase in new exhibitors this year.

Art Paris 2024. Courtesy of fair organizers.

Art Paris opened to VIPs at the Grand Palais Éphémère on Wednesday with optimism as the French capital garners more attention from the art world following Brexit and in the run-up to the Olympic Games 2024. This year’s fair—its 26th edition—features a line-up of 136 exhibitors from 25 countries and sees an increase of 30 percent in the number of newcomers, including some big industry names.

“Paris is in the midst of an exceptional period of cultural and artistic renaissance. Also, with the Olympic Games just around the corner, the city is more attractive than ever,” Guillaume Piens, director of the fair, noted in an email.

Piens revealed that the participating galleries were handpicked from a total of 291 applicants. Among the exhibiting galleries, 60 percent of them are French and the rest of them are international, with some 20 percent of them focusing on modern art, in particular surrealism as 2024 marks the centenary of the beginning of the art movement. Works on show ranged from €1,000 to €1.3 million ($1,086 to $1.4 million).

a group of people viewing artworks on the wall, in pink, blue and soothing colours.

Art Paris 2024. Courtesy of Art Paris.

Among the 42 first-time exhibitors include Esther Schipper (Berlin, Paris, Seoul), Peter Kilchmann (Zurich, Paris), Richard Saltoun (London, Rome), Meessen De Clercq (Brussels), Michel Rein (Paris, Brussels), Antoine Laurentin (Paris, Brussels), Boquet (Paris), and the Czech gallery Cermak Eisenkraft. Some of the returning galleries include Poggi, Frank Elbaz, Continua, Lelong & Co, Almine Rech, and Perrotin.

One of the recent newcomers to Paris is Berlin trendsetter Esther Schipper, which opened its space in Place Vendome in late 2022. The gallery is joining hands with Mendes Wood DM to present two-part solo show “La Pensée Férale” by the Barcelona-born, Rio de Janeiro-based artist Daniel Steegmann Mangrané at the two galleries’ Paris spaces. Another artist represented by the gallery, the Cologne-based Matti Braun, will present a curated selection of works in the Liaigre showroom at 77 rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré.

“We have become increasingly more active in the Parisian art scene and this year decided to participate at Art Paris for our very first time. We are showing a selection of artists from the gallery including works by one of our latest additions to the gallery program, Annette Kelm,” noted Julia Séguier, director of Esther Schipper’s Paris location. “Our increased activity in Paris this spring means followers of our gallery will also have lots to see apart from our booth at the Grand Palais Éphémère.”

An image of a gallery booth featuring several colourful walled works and a sculpture in the front.

Installation view of Esther Schipper’s booth at Art Paris 2024. Photo: Andrea Rossetti. Courtesy of the gallery.

Some 70 percent of the galleries are returning exhibitors, organizers said. Guest curators Éric de Chassey and Nicolas Trembley took helm of sectors “Fragile Utopias. A Focus on the French Scene” and “Art & Craft” respectively. Young galleries are featured in The Promise sector while a total of 17 modern and emerging artists are featured in the Solo Show sector.

The VIP opening saw a range of collectors, institution directors including Emma Lavigne from the Pinault Collection and representatives from Qatar Museums. Directors of galleries that are not exhibiting such as Samia Souma from Max Hetzler as well as those from Marianne Ibrahim and Gagosian were also spotted on the fairground. France’s Minister of Culture, Rachida Dati, also visited the fair during the opening.

“I have never felt so much attraction for Paris,” said Piens, who has worked in the art fair business in Paris for 24 years. “The installation of large international galleries in the capital can only amplify the visibility of the French scene: many of these galleries seeking to represent French artists to better establish themselves in the Parisian ecosystem.”

It was also announced that the French-born, Milan-based artist Nathalie Du Pasquier was named the winner of the inaugural BNP Paribes Banque Privée Prize, which consists of €30,000 ($32,584).

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