As fashion month comes to a close, the art world is ready to saddle up for a season of frantic activity, beginning with last week’s Frieze Art Fair in London and running all the way until Art Basel Miami in December. For the next two months, the world’s prime gallerists, artists, and collectors will roam across the Earth in the search for the best showcases and sales – and this week, it’s all about Paris, who hosts its annual FIAC art fair. While FIAC is one of the older fairs of the European continent, it’s only in recent years it’s really re-established itself as a leader in the industry, attracting a great variety of blue chip and emerging names from around the world. Its international importance has made the FIAC week the most important of the year for the city’s museums and galleries, as proven by the wealth of exhibitions that can be experienced in the city. Should you be an uninitiated outsider – or frankly, just more concerned with the latest droppings on Vogue Runway, but still down for some painting-watching – despair not; here are four shows not to miss this week in the French Capital.
Balice Hertling Booth @ FIAC – Julie Beaufils, Will Benedict, Jonathan Binet, Camille Blatrix, Xinyi Cheng, Enzo Cucchi, Isabelle Cornaro, Buck Ellison, Simone Fattal, Lewis Hammond, Kayode Ojo, Sam Samiee
Our favorite gallery in Paris, Balice Hertling, is showing an eclectic mix of sculpture and painting from their international roster of emerging artists. Find homoerotic oil paintings from Chinese artist Xinyi Cheng, affective electronics from Camille Blatrix, and fashionable sculptures from Kayode Ojo – all available for purchase, that is, if you have the €€€’s to match it.
Mircea Cantor – “HISTORY IS JUST A BULLET ON YOUR TIMELINE” @ VNH Gallery
Back in the streets of Paris, the 3rd arrondissement offers a plethora of art watering holes – and VNH is always a safe bet. Founded by the fashionable Victoire de Pourtalès, previously a director at Thaddaeus Ropac, and collector Hélène Nguyen-Ban, VNH focuses on strong solo presentations by international artists, perfect for their spectacular location on Rue Vieille du Temple. Currently on display is a new exhibition by Mircea Cantor, the Romanian/French readymade artist.
Galerie Gmurzynska @ FIAC: Alexandre de Betak
One of the most anticipated booths at FIAC is Galerie Gmurzynska, the Cologne gallery specializing in masterpieces of both classic modern and post-war art for more than 50 years. Having presented a Karl Lagerfeld designed booth in 2011, Galerie Gmurzynska is proud to announce its return to the fair with a visionary installation by French designer, scenographer and creative director Alexandre de Betak, who for long has had a strong standing in the fashion world for his impressive installations and show productions for the likes of Dior, Celine, Hermès and Calvin Klein. The exhibition, On Fire, will include a diverse list of artists using or depicting fire in all forms throughout the 20th century, from Joan Miró to Otto Piene, Yves Klein, Alberto Burri, Roberto Matta up to Tom Wesselmann and others.
Franz West @ Centre Pompidou
Finish your week with a trip to the contemporary art museum of all contemporary art museums – the Centre Pompidou. On show is a glorious retrospective of Franz West, the Austrian artist who fused sculpture with an unmistaken humanity throughout his prolific career in the late 20th century. From sculpture to drawings, paintings and video, enjoy over 200 works made from the 70s to 2012.