Discover up-and-coming artists at art fairs

By Lee Woo-young

Korea Galleries, Blanc Bleu Hotel art fairs ring in new collecting season

  • Published : Feb 26, 2014 - 19:37
  • Updated : Feb 26, 2014 - 19:37
Visitors look at art on display at the Korea Galleries Art Fair in 2013. (Korea Galleries Art Fair)
With spring just around the corner, the Korean art market is welcoming the new season with the opening of art fairs, offering both novice and seasoned collectors a chance to discover latest emerging artists or add to their existing collections.

The Korea Galleries Art Fair, hosted by the Galleries Association of Korea, which was founded in 1976, will be held from March 6-9 at Coex, presenting artworks of both emerging and established artists that each gallery represents.

The art fair showcases more artists than last year as galleries may introduce their top five artists. Last year’s art fair allowed galleries to present three artists each.

A total of 470 artists will participate in the 32nd art fair, displaying diverse media and styles ranging from painting, sculpture, print, photography and installation to media art. The art fair features high-profile artists of the Korean art scene such as Lee Ufan, Ha Chong-hyun, Kim Jong-hak, Kim Tschang-yeul, Oh Chi-gyun, Kang Ik-joong as well as emerging talents like Moon Ji-yeon, Yoo Hyun-kyung, Heo Su-young and Kim Ji-won.

“As the art market continues to suffer sluggish sales, we tried to upgrade the quality of paintings and artists for this year’s art fair. It will show where the Korean art world is headed,” said Pyo Mi-sun, chairman of the Galleries Association of Korea and president of Pyo Gallery.

The number of visitors to the KGAF has increased. Last year’s audience surpassed 35,000 with 600 pieces of art sold. The total sales reached 3.5 billion won ($3.2 million) last year.

The art fair also seeks to foster art collaboration between the art world and companies by holding a side event to discuss the mutual benefits of such collaboration.

Another auxiliary event will show the contemporary art featured on opera stages. It will be open from 11 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. from Thursday to Saturday, and from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday. Admission is 10,000 won for adults and 8,000 won for students. For more information, visit.artkorea.info.

This weekend, artworks will go on display at hotel rooms during the Blanc Bleu Hotel Art Fair from Friday to Sunday at Grand Ambassador Seoul. The art fair will feature more than 1,000 artworks from some 100 Korean and foreign artists. It will help viewers picture the artworks in their own homes, as the pieces will be on display in the hotel guestrooms.

The exhibition will be open from 1 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Friday, and from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. from March 1-2 on the fourth and fifth floors of the hotel.

For more information, call (02) 2270-3683.

By Lee Woo-young (wylee@heraldcorp.com)