Art Fair Report: TEFAF Maastricht 2018


Often titled as "the most beautiful Art Fair in the world", the luxurious TEFAF Maastricht opened its doors to an exclusive selection of VIPs on March 8 with a new Preview concept which extends the VIP preview to two days instead of only one like in the past. This helped trimming down the crowds which usually filled the aisles on the opening day and left both exhibitors and visitors delighted about less scramble, more space and the chance for relaxed interactions  in the booths and aisles.


Business, however, didn't seem to suffer. All dealers reported sales or had works under reservation by the end of Day 1. It seemed though that the visitors were more inclined to the less expensive works. No seven-figure sales were reported by end of Day 1 - but this is not unusual at TEFAF which goes on for 10 days and where the pace is usually a slower one.


However, what certainly made a difference in the Sales picture was the fact that there was competition from Armory Show in New York and the Contemporary Art Auctions in London which all took place at the same time. In fact, most visitors on the Opening Day seemed to come from Benelux countries, Germany, Switzerland and France - heavyweight collectors from the US were prominently absent. 


What did dealers bring to the fair? Apart from a very local approach with many booths featuring works by Cobra or Zero artists, Picasso (and especially Picasso portraits) seemed a force dealers relied on. Several dealers also apparently wanted to profit from hot and rising markets and brought works by Hans Hartung, George Condo and Rudolf Stingel. Marc Chagall works were hanging in many booths, as were works by Kirchner and Van Dongen. Notably absent this year were works by Gerhard Richter (usually very present in this fair); and there weren't as many Warhols as used to be.  


Let's take a look now who brought what and at which prices:


Vedovi Gallery had a large scale 2005 Christopher Wool for $ 3.5million, plus a 1979 Ruscha canvas "Kay-Eye-Double-S". A plus-sized Julian Schnabel  work from 2008 was on offer for $380,000. The gallery also brought works by Carl Andre, Lucio Fontana, Rene Magritte, Richard Prince, Jean Dubuffet, Picasso, Twombly,  De Kooning.


Van de Weghe presented two late Picasso portraits (Buste de Femme, 1965 - $ 4.8million;  and Tête d'Homme, 1965 - $ 2.8million), Jean-Michel Basquiat's "Totem" from 1982 ($ 3.3million), a golden Stingel from 2012 ($ 2.25million), a little Calder standing mobile ($395,000), Andreas Gursky's "Jumeirah Palm" from 2008, a Wesselman "Smoker Study" from 1973 and more works by Fontana (a green 1961 Concetto Spaziale with 5 cuts), Warhol (Dust Shoes) and  Keith Haring (a large canvas from 1985).


Massimo de Carlo brought two Stingel works: a silver one for $ 1million, and a silver-pink one for $ 2million. They also have a Günther Förg for €250,000, and a large scale 2018 Jennifer Guidi which sold in the first hour of the fair for $145,000.


Karsten Greve had sold most of the lower-priced works by younger artists at his booth by the end of the first day (Georgia Russell, Qiu Shihua). However, Cy Twombly's "Venus + Adonis" for € 2.9million and a large pink Gotthard Graubner pillow canvas for €580,000 were still available after day one.


Galerie Perrotin also ride the Hartung wave with a beautiful but not so typical large scale late Hartung from 1980 priced at €385,000; while the joint booth of  Tina Kim Gallery and Kukje featured a Kapoor mirror for €750,000 which sold on the first day of the fair. Another late 1982 Hartung can be seen (and bought) at  MaruaniMercier, for €350,000. They also have a not-so-great 1991 Condo work in their booth for which they are asking €600,000. 


Galerie Andrea Caratsch has several works by Condo: two small bronzes priced at €100,000, a large one at €350,000, the 101 x 91 cm "The Tailor"  from 2008  for €820,000 and the slightly smaller "The Irishman" from 2007 for €620,000. The gallery also has a large John Armleder in their booth, available at €150,000.


Boris Verwoordt has a mixed booth (as always) with Roman / Egyptian objects and works by Kazuo Shiraga, El Anatsui, Yun Hyong-Keun, Gotthard Graubner and Shozo Shimamoto. While the Shiraga (priced at $ 2.5million) and the Anatsui (priced at $ 1million) had not yet sold after the opening days, a 1960 Graubner had sold for $200,000 and a canvas by Hyong-Keun for $500,000.


Brame Lorenceau showed works by Pierre Soulages (1970, €800,000), Hans Hartung (1951, €175,000) and George Condo (2005, €125,000).


Mazzoleni have a Picasso oil-on-wooden-board Portrait from 1968 (GBP 7million) and  a  Burri "Rosso Plastica" from 1968 for €1.5million. Thomas Gibson offers a 1975 Dubuffet for $ 1.95million.

Thomas Salis has a 1965 "Femme et enfant" Picasso priced at € 4.5million, while a  Picasso portrait at Hammer Galleries was on offer at $ 5.85million.  Richard Nagy had an outstanding Campendonk priced at € 4.5million, and a Van Dongen for € 4.5million. 


Henze Ketterer show the superb Ernst-Ludiwg Kirchner "Die Erscheinung der Sieben im Eulenspiegel" from 1923/24, which comes with a price tag of € 5.4million; while Galerie Thomas have a Max Beckmann from 1939 ("Krieger und Vogelfrau") priced at € 3.8million, and a 1939 Léger available at €3.95million.


On the Contemporary Art front, Galerie Thomas are strong in Wesselman works (a small steel sculpture for €38,000 and two flower still lifes at €120,000), and works by Balkenhol, Cragg, Lüpertz.


A 1980/81 oil and tempera on canvas "Les mariés dans le ciel de Paris" by Marc Chagall was available for €900,000 at  Galerie Boulakia, while Osborne Samuel had works by Lynn Chadwick and Henry Moore in their booth and Connaught Brown brought a Henry Moore "Three Standing Figures" Bronze from 1945 along. 


Applicat Prazan are showing a €480,000 Karel Appel canvas and a small Dubuffet for €580,000, while another Appel at Smith Davidson is priced at €395,000. 


Galerie Delaive has several works by Sam Francis in their booth. A large canvas by the artist sold on the first day for €325,000.  

Waterhouse Dodd are offering a Joan Mitchell for €620,000.

They also have two small oil on board studies by Alex Katz, "Study for Ada in the Park" (€84,000) and "Poppy" (€51,000), plus a deep blue foil in a box work by Anselm Reyle for €75,000; and two Wesselmans: "Drawing for Bedroom painting" for €43,000 and "Study for Blonde Vivienne" for €110,000.  


Galerie Ludorff have a 80 x 100 cm Castellani "Superficie Bianca" from 2005 for €390,000, a small Henry Moore "Reclining Nude", as well as works by Balkenhol ("Relief Man", €85,000  / "Woman with Yellow Jacket", € 45,000), Knoebel ("Face 2", €75,000), Rottluff watercolors for €90,000, Hans Hartung's "P1971-20" for €85,000 and a small Bernar Venet steel sculpture for €75,000.


Beck and Eggeling have a large round Günther Uecker nail work for which they are asking € 2million, alongside works by Heinz Mack, Otto Piene, Manolo Valdéz and Gotthard Graubner.  

Ben Brown has two Gerhard Richter works: a large colorful "Red-Blue-Yellow" (€ 2.5million), and the grey 1968 "Two Women at a Table" for € 1.4million. Other works in his booth include a large 1969 Castellani, a 1964 Uecker nail work, a 1957 Heinz Mack and a Fontana Concetto Spaziale from 1964.

The Albers at Tovar Gallery  is for sale at $950,000. 


TEFAF Maastricht Tefaf2018 The European Fine Art Fair 2018 Picasso Van Dongen Van Gogh Uecker Warhol Cobra Zero Campendonk Chagall