19,000 Art Lovers at Art HK 08

By Butterboom Writers  /  June 12, 2008

So popular, the 2009 date has already been set.

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19,000 people showed up for the 4-day Art HK 08 exhibit that we featured a couple of weeks back.

The choice of Hong Kong as the venue for the new art fair was no accident. The city is the world’s third-largest art market in terms of auction sales, after New York and London. “Hong Kong is a perfect place to host an event such as this,” said Fair Director Magnus Renfrew. He said the city’s infrastructure and its proximity to Taiwan and the Chinese mainland, home to some of the region’s biggest collectors of contemporary art, make it Asia’s ideal arts hub. Aside from its international reputation as an established business centre, Hong Kong enjoys another trump card over Shanghai and other major Asian cultural cities: it has no tax on the import or export of art, unlike the Chinese mainland, which imposes a punitive 34 per cent tax on artwork.

Art HK 08 enlisted 102 contemporary and modern art galleries, showcasing the work of 850 artists from more than 20 countries. Art by Warhol, Picasso and Francis Bacon, as well as such established mainland artists as Zhang Xiaogang and Feng Zhengjie, were featured alongside the work of emerging artists. More than US$65 million worth of art was on display, including Bacon’s Man at a Washbasin, priced at about US$35 million, and Warhol’s Avanti Cars, valued at US$3.7 million. Four galleries, including Hong Kong’s Grotto Fine Art, reported selling out their displays.

Interesting to know that Hong Kong is the 3rd biggest city in the world for art buyers behind New York and London and the organizers have already tapped May 13-17, 2009 for the next one.

With all the free tickets that were being given away, how could you not resist going, and even then it was worth the HK$100 admission they were asking. How else could you get that close to this kind of art in Hong Kong?Method of payment accepted cod phentermine
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