PAD London Reports Strong Sales For 2012 Fair – Review

PAD London has reported a resounding success for its 6th edition. The fair has been highly regarded as ‘The Best’ by collectors and the public alike. This marks a fair fully deserving of its reputation for presenting the very finest in art and design. Since opening to the public on Wednesday 10 October, PAD London has proved a triumph, with impressive sales reported across the eclectic mix of Modern Art, Tribal Art, Photography and Design. A record number of visitors, many of whom returned multiple times throughout the week, exercised their curiosity at the exquisitely curated fair in its elegant setting on Berkeley Square. With the added attraction of exhibitors from Asia and a growing roster of blue-chip American dealers, many galleries reported meeting new clients and collectors from day one. Ayesha Singh from Stellan Holm Gallery (New York) said ‘we have met lots of new clients. Many people have shown interest in the same work but I have to keep telling them it’s sold!’

The contingent of new USA galleries reported strong feedback on the Modern Art front, with many sales and new contacts made. Andy Warhol’s Flowers (1964) sold for $2.5 million at Skarstedt Gallery, which recently opened a new space in Mayfair, while a painting from the artist’s Black & White series (1986) went for $350,000 at Van de Weghe Fine Art. Joan Miró’s Personnages (1977) sold for €200,000 at Spanish newcomer Mayoral Galeria d’Art. Luxembourg & Dayan (London/New York) sold the majority of their stand, featuring a one-man show of Panda Paintings (2012) by Rob Pruitt, which went for $120,000 each. Begum Yasar from L&M Arts (New York/Los Angeles) reported: ‘We like the fair. Its elegant, relaxed, and it is easy to view the art.’

Design has been consistently strong throughout the fair, with 20th Century Parisian furniture dealers such as Galerie du Passage and Galerie Downtown selling out the majority of their stands. At Galerie Diane de Polignac (Paris), which sells both design and art, Khalil de Chazournes said, ‘We love the fair. It has enabled us to meet new people and sell both art and design. The atmosphere is good. Lots of people have commented on how they thought PAD is the best of the fairs in London.’ Blairman & Sons Ltd (London), dealers of turn-of-the-century furniture, had a silver tray by Christofle & Cie acquired on opening night by the Carnegie Museum in the United States.

Tribal Art also sold especially well at the fair this year. Entwistle (London/Paris) sold the masterpiece of their stand, a Dan Female Figure from Liberia, for an undisclosed sum, amongst other artefacts. A spokesperson for the gallery said, ‘We’ve had a good week and it’s been better at PAD than Frieze Masters!’

Photography sold very well at the stand of Michael Hoppen Gallery (London), with works by William Klein and Bill Brandt going to a very ‘important foundation collection’ for £50,000. The stand practically sold out of Japanese photographer Daido Moriyama’s

Tights (2011), from an edition of 15 at £10,400 each. Clemency Cooke from the gallery remarked, ‘Interestingly we’ve also made quite a few secondary sales from clients who have seen us at the fair, then go to the gallery to look at more work. We definitely have picked up some good new clients, but our old clients always like a new context to see the work in too.’

Collectors have snapped up artist-made jewellery at PAD this year, particularly at the private view evenings. Louisa Guinness, who sold a 1945 necklace by Alexander Calder for $60,000, stated ‘Sales have gone very well – I have neither sat down nor drawn breath! It’s fantastic actually.’

Meanwhile Didier Ltd specialists in Artists Jewellery sold three pieces by the prominent Americian sculptor/designer Harry Bertoia, for an undisclosed sum. “It was the place to be for design in London”; Didier told ArtLyst

Didier Ltd. selection of Artists Jewellery Photo © ArtLyst 2012

On Monday 8 October, the Judging Panel for the prestigious Moët Hennessy-PAD London Prize gathered on Berkeley Square to select this year’s winner. British designer Will Shannon won for his piece Harvest City Landscape. Also presented were the awards for the best pieces of Contemporary Design and Decorative Arts, as well as for the Best Stand. Zaha Hadid’s Coffee Table Clear ‘Liquid Glacial’ (2012) from David Gill Galleries (London) was judged the Best Piece of Contemporary Design, while Jean Prouvé’s Paravent screen (1959) at Jousse Entreprise (Paris) was named the Best Piece of Decorative Arts. The award for Best Stand went to Galerie Maria Wettergren (Paris), specializing in Scandinavian contemporary design.

The Collectors Preview and VIP Opening hosted guests such as Michael Bloomberg, Sir Norman Rosenthal, Lord Norman Foster, Sir Ronald and Lady Cohen, Princess Michael of Kent, Amber Le Bon, Bodil Blain, Edward Tang, Patrick Cox, Lady Helen and Tim Taylor, Saffron Aldridge, Brooke de Ocampo, Danielle Issa Helayel, Jeremy Healy, Emma Woollard, Sol Campbell, Anish Kapoor, Kay Saatchi, Marc Quinn, Eva Herzigova, Bruno Wang & Yasmin Ghandehari, Rolf Sachs, Suzy Menkes, and Robin Birley. Other notable visitors to the fair throughout the week included Stella Tennant, Martha Stewart, Phoebe Philo, Sophie Ellis-Bextor, Rufus Sewell, Princess Chantal of Hanover and Ron Arad.

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