4 Special Features Connoisseurs and Art Lovers Won’t Want to Miss at Masterpiece Online

The current edition of Masterpiece London may be taking place online, but that doesn't mean educational programming has been scaled back.

Rashid Johnson, Untitled Stranger (2017). Courtesy of Hauser & Wirth.
Rashid Johnson, Untitled Stranger (2017). Courtesy of the artist and Hauser & Wirth.

Masterpiece London, the beloved summer art and design fair, has come online for this year’s edition.

But the fair—which has also gained a reputation for foregrounding expert curatorial voices across a wealth of fields—isn’t letting the virtual experience slow its educational engagement.

While many fairs have dialed back on programming, Masterpiece Online organizers say they want their audiences not only to buy, but to engage.

“Our virtual talks program enables experts from different parts of the world to come together and discuss timely topics such as collecting art online, the role experience plays in the digital age, and attracting and inspiring museum visitors today,” says Philip Hewat-Jaboor, chairman of Masterpiece. 

Below, check out four can’t-miss virtual features taking place at Masterpiece Online this week.


Exhibitor-Led Instagram Talks
Various times

Courtesy of Les Enluminures.

Courtesy of Les Enluminures.

Dozens of the fair’s exhibitors will host condensed art talks on Instagram TV to serve as insightful primers on respective galleries’ areas of expertise.

Upcoming talks include a look at the inspirations behind Japanese artist Hiroshi Senju’s “Waterfall” series of paintings, led by Sundaram Tagore Gallery; and Les Enluminures Gallery’s dive into how Medieval books and objects became physical conduits to religious devotion.

Most of the talks can be streamed on exhibitors’ Instagram pages afterward, too.

See a full list of talks here.


Women Artists: Past & Present
Friday, June 26, 5 p.m. GMT

Courtesy of Masterpiece.

Courtesy of Masterpiece.

Katy Hessel, the host of The Great Women Artists podcast, leads a panel discussion about the changing role of women artists from the Renaissance till today.

Panelists include National Gallery curator Letizia Treves who will discuss staging shows of works by women of the Baroque Era; dealer Richard Saltoun, who has spent his career promoting and exhibiting the work of female artists; Jo Baring, director of the Ingram Collection; Sarah Turner, deputy director of the Paul Mellon Centre; Corrie Jackson, senior curator for the Royal Bank of Canada art collection; and Zoé Whitley, Director, The Chisenhale Gallery.

Register for this talk here.


Collecting Pre-Contemporary Art Online
Saturday, June 27, 11 a.m. GMT

Courtesy of Masterpiece.

Courtesy of Masterpiece.

Over the past months, collecting has changed significantly, with most encounters happening online. For those who are passionate about the world of pre-contemporary art—in which issues of provenance, authenticity, and trust—are especially complex, smart digital connoisseurship is of the utmost importance.

In this conversation, experts consider best practices for when and how collectors should consider buying pre-contemporary art online.

Panelists include collector Katrin Bellinger, Masterpiece chairman Philip Hewat-Jaboor, dealer Philip Mould, and Orlando Rock, chairman of Christie’s UK. The panel is moderated by Anna Brady, art market editor at the Art Newspaper.

Register for this talk here.


Family Day
Sunday, June 28

Courtesy of Masterpiece and Oppidan Education.

Courtesy of Masterpiece and Oppidan Education.

The UK mentoring group Oppidan Education is teaming up with Masterpiece for a day of kid-friendly learning in three age-grouped sessions scheduled throughout the day.

The sessions will explore Japanese art, Impressionism, and iconic portraiture in art-making activities.

“We’ve seen from Masterpiece London how popular our activities for engaging children have been,” says Hewat-Jaboor. “During this time when many children are not at school but at home full-time, we felt it especially important to recreate our Families Day online, free of charge.”

Learn more here

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