Scandinavia’s Top Galleries Meet in Stockholm for Market Art Fair 2016

The fair is a must-see survey of the Nordic art scene.

Ilja Karilampi at Belenius/Nordenhake, Stockholm Photo: Courtesy Belenius/Nordenhake, Stockholm

Market Art Fair, which focuses on contemporary art in the Nordic region kicks off this Friday in Stockholm, Sweden.

The boutique fair, which counts about 30 participating galleries in this year’s edition, was founded by an alliance of Stockholm-based galleries in 2005 to create a unified marketplace for Scandinavian dealers.

Bjarne Melgaard Untitled (2015) Photo: Galerie Forsblom

Bjarne Melgaard Untitled (2015)
Photo: Galerie Forsblom

“The focus is really on the nordic galleries, that’s the main character of the fair,” Market Art Fair co-director Jun-Hi Wennergren Nordling told artnet News in a telephone interview. “Even though the art that is shown is international, since a lot of our galleries and participants are showing at events and fairs all around the world.”

Since taking over the reins last year, co-directors Elin Hagström and Jun-Hi Wennergren Nordling have sought to move the event to a setting that would match the contemporary art on offer at the fair.

Olafur Eliasson at i8 Gallery, Reykjavik. Photo: Courtesy i8 Gallery, Reykjavik

Olafur Eliasson at i8 Gallery, Reykjavik.
Photo: Courtesy i8 Gallery, Reykjavik

For its 11th edition the co-directors have taken the Market fair out of its previous established institutional home, and moved it to the roof of a 1970s-era shopping mall in the middle of Stockholm’s city center. Aside from the art on view, the temporary venue also offers fantastic vistas of Stockholm for visitors to enjoy.

Additionally, this year the fair has taken a more refined and curatorial approach by asking participants to exclusively show solo presentations.

Elena Damiani Rude Rocks N3 and N2 (2015) Photo: Galerie Nordenhake, Stockholm/Berlin

Elena Damiani Rude Rocks N3 and N2 (2015)
Photo: Galerie Nordenhake, Stockholm/Berlin

“One of the important parts of that [decision] was to take a clear stand that this is a new era for the galleries in Stockholm and across the region,” Wennergren Nordling said, explaining the changes to the fair’s format, graphic design, and venue.

Although the core collector base continues to hail from Scandinavia, as the fair has progressively grown so has the audience it attracts become increasingly international.

Per Kirkeby Untitled (2015) Photo: Galleri Bo Bjerggaard, Copenhagen

Per Kirkeby Untitled (2015)
Photo: Galleri Bo Bjerggaard, Copenhagen

“There’s definitely an increased number of international collectors coming, this year there’s been a real boom in international interest,” Wennergren Nordling said.

“I believe that there’s an attraction in coming to a smaller city like Stockholm where there’s more things to discover. Many people have already traveled to the big cities, coming here is valuable for a lot of guests.”

To find out more about what dealers are presenting at the fair, browse the exhibitors’ list here.

Market Art Fair takes place in Stockholm from April 22-24. 


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