More than ever, right now is the best time to be an art enthusiast as all year long art events and art fairs happens in many places around the globe. Since art fairs serves as the driving force in further increasing its reach and inspiring people to take up art, more and more organizations are organizing art related events.
From small community art exhibitions to Biennale events, it gathers all players in the art industry to get involved and introduce their agendas to the ever loyal art aficionados.
Art Not only inspires, it also sells
During these art events though, one will notice that not everyone are sincere in pursuing the arts to the masses.
Sometimes, it will be all about doing business. Art dealers will take advantage of using these events to produce art dealership deals and galleries will ride the free press coverage to promoter their art spaces. While artists will find an avenue to sell their work and for authentic art collectors to buy art, there will be a few wealthy people who will just purchase art just to enhance their status.
In recent years, the credo “Love for Meaningful Art” is slowly being replaced by “Art that sells” – there has been a troubling pattern of artists being forced to produce artworks that has a better chance of selling than creating artwork with great quality. Fortunately, a lot of art events being held today are trying to correct this problem by holding art festivals and exhibitions that promotes quality art over commercialized art.
For a common man wanting to learn more about art and for the art connoisseur who are looking to attend a meaningful art festival, here are few must visit art festivals and exhibitions around the world.
Art Festivals and Exhibitions Held around the World
Kochi-Muziris Biennale 2014
Dec – March every year – http://www.kochimuzirisbiennale.org/
More than this biennale, what interests me are the organizers – Kochi Biennale Foundation (KBF) – is a leading non-profit charitable trust involved in promoting art & culture and educational activities in India.
The Kochi-Muziris Biennale campaigns for the enrichment of cosmopolitan spirit of the modern metropolis of Kochi and its fabled history, the ancient seaport of Muziris. The aim is to create a platform that will present contemporary international visual art theory and practice to India, showcase and stir discussions about new Indian and international aesthetics and art experiences that will facilitate a dialogue among artists, curators, and the art enthusiasts.
Art Basel, Switzerland, Hong Kong, Miami
June every year – https://www.artbasel.com/en/About-Art-Basel
Still retaining its innovation even after 40 years since its inception, Art Basel has been a driving force in the world of arts by supporting galleries that plays the role of nurturing artists and by developing and promoting visual arts. Partnering with crowd funding website KickStarter, Art Basel opens up a wider door of opportunity for up and coming artists looking to fund their art endeavors. Held annually in Miami Beach, Hong Kong and in Basel, every artist should make it a point to attend one of these events.
Sharjah Biennale, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates
Mar – June every year – http://www.sharjahart.org/
Bursting with cultural diversity, the Sharjah is not all about the glitz and glamour of arts, rather it present art in a historic perspective that authenticates the region’s rich culture and traditions. Currently on its 10th edition, the Sharjah features artists, writers, poets, filmmakers and dancers producing mesmerizing collaborative art that lasts for 3 months every year, is worth every bit of your time.
Cape town Art Fair
February of every year – http://www.capetownartfair.co.za/
The Cape Town art fair is a testament of the growing art scene in the African continent. The organizers of this art festival pride themselves in shouldering the responsibility of discovering and collaborating with up and coming genius artists in the region. Boasting of a bustling art scene, Cape Town serves as a melting pot of young African artists and art enthusiasts – where the continent’s diverse cultural heritage and rich history are widely expressed in their own unique art.
India Art Fair
January every year – http://www.indiaartfair.in/
The idea behind the India Art Fair occurred to Neha Kripal upon his return to India in 2008. Influenced and enlightened by the dynamic art scene in London, she thought about doing something for the promotion of art in India. Without any previous fraternization with art festival before, Kripal has now made the India Art Fair as a major driving force in ushering a positive improvement of the art scene in India. Exhibits of art works from Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and the rest of Asia are showcased here.
Edinburgh Festival Fringe
August every year – https://www.edfringe.com
If last year’s art festival is any indication, the numbers speaks for itself; 49,497 performances of 3,193 art related shows across 299 venues all over Scotland’s capital city, the next art festival is primed to be a massive one filled with more art inducing festivities. Since its inception on 1947, Edinburgh Festival Fringe has emerged as one of the largest arts festival in the world.
Sept – November – http://bienal.iksv.org/en
The International Istanbul Biennial is a modern art exhibition, held every two years in Istanbul, Turkey since its inception in 1987. The Biennial is organized by the İstanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts. It aims to generate a melting point of visual artists from diverse cultures and the art enthusiasts. Rich in culture, history, food and lovely people, Istanbul is the perfect city to become an art capital of the region. The Istanbul Biennial provides an exhibition model that empowers a discussion between artists and the audience through their artworks.
Pop Art Myths, Madrid, Spain
Jun – Apr every year – http://www.madridespop.es/en/
Showcasing more than a hundred of art works from some of the most important figures in pop-art from Andy Warhol to the finest artists of today, as well as lesser-known but up and coming artists, the Pop Art Madrid is a one stop art festival for both the art experts and art students alike.
Biennale of Sydney
March 2016 – https://www.biennaleofsydney.com.au/
The Biennale of Sydney is an international festival of contemporary visual and performance art, held every two years in Sydney, Australia. It is the biggest contemporary visual arts event in Australia. Alongside the Venice and São Paulo biennales and Documenta, it is among the longest running exhibition of its kind and was the first biennale to be organized in the Asia-Pacific region.
Art Fair Philippines
Every February – http://artfairphilippines.com/the-art-fair/
Founded in 2013, Art Fair Philippines is the foremost venue for showcasing the best in contemporary and modern Philippine visual arts. It aims to present the ever expanding vibrant local art scene to the rest of the world – in order to generate support for Filipino artists. Set in an unconventional urban venue, Art Fair Philippines makes art readily available to art enthusiasts and to everyone willing to discover one of Southeast Asia’s bustling art landscapes.
Other notable Art Festivals happening all around the world that are must visits are:
- Sundance Film Festival – founded by actor Robert Redford, it showcases the best of independent motion picture cinema.
- Budapest Spring Festival – it presents all sorts of visual arts, music, drama, dance, poetry, exhibitions, and in the pleasing city of Budapest.
- The Venice Biennial – this has become one of the oldest, largest and most significant contemporary art exhibitions in the world since its establishment in 1895.
- Foire Internationale d’Art Contemporain in France (FIAC) – France’s biggest and most important art fair stands at par with many of the most prestigious art fairs in the world.
- Frieze Art Fair (London and New York) – As Allistair Hicks, art adviser to Deutsche Bank says, “It’s a wonderful, heady mixture of artists, collectors and clients – the art market in full swing.”
- Echigo-Tsumari Art Triennial in Japan – Held every three years at the Echigo-Tsumari Art Triennial, the world’s largest outdoor art.
- Cannes Film Festival – Considered as the most prestigious and glamorous film festival in the world.
- Athens & Epidaurus Festival (Greece) – is dubbed as the world’s most famous theatrical festival highlighted by endless drama, dance and musical performing artistry. Performances are held in ancient theatres including the 2,000 year old amphitheater of Herodus Atticus on Acropolis Hill.
- Marrakesh Popular Arts Festival (Morocco) – showcases the country’s best arts and music festival that transforms the historic Marrakesh’s hyperactive Djamaa el Fna into a festive art fest during this time.
- Ageas Salisbury International Festival (England) – is a high-standard, award winning multi-arts festival participated by talented artists all over the globe.
These are just some of the many art festivals that are sure to worth every minute of your time. As an art enthusiast it serves us better to continuously learn and improve the knowledge about our passion in art.
Let’s start planning our trips to these wonderful destinations that hosts the world’s best art festivals and events.