“Art Without Frontiers” – because never before has Brafa hosted so many foreign galleries. Numbering 84, these now represent 63% of the total number of exhibitors.
And this is to be applauded, as it confirms both the stability of the national market, where the myth of the Belgian collector is clearly still seductive, and the increased international power of the Fair, which grows with every edition.
This is an ideal start to the year, when the geographic position of Brussels at the centre of some of Europe’s wealthiest regions and its great connectivity with them, the quality of the Brussels hotels and the organisation of the Fair, as well as the relaxed Belgian style atmosphere of the event are probably all criteria which contribute to its attraction.
“Art Without Frontiers” – because Brafa has always aimed for a mix of styles, eras, and origins, and has made eclecticism and cross-collecting its real trademark.
This trend is particularly popular with today’s collectors and art lovers, who like to put together collections where old, modern, and contemporary live side by side; where an antique bust may be happy sitting cheek by jowl with an African mask or a 20th Century sculpture, showcased on an 18th Century chest of drawers under a designer mirror or framed masterpiece.
This is a reflection of our contemporary era, where we exchange, consume, buy, sell and travel well beyond our own frontiers and continents.
Brussels Fine Art Fair (BRAFA) will welcome Gilbert & George as Guest of Honour of its upcoming edition at Tour & Taxis in Brussels, 26 January – 3 February 2019.
In the half century that they have lived and created art together as Living Sculptures, embarked on a visionary journey through the modern world, always together and always alone, Gilbert & George have created fiercely singular Anti-Art that is poetic, primal and emotionally driven.
At BRAFA 2019, they will present five large-scale pictures that will be placed at various spots throughout the fair. Personally selected by Gilbert & George, there are from the recent series ‘JACK FREAK PICTURES’ (2008), ‘LONDON PICTURES’ (2010), ‘SCAPEGOATING PICTURES’ (2013) and ‘BEARD PICTURES’ (2016). Their quirky vision of the world is sure to be a hit in the land of surrealism!
With the support of Galerie Albert Baronian.
BRAFA 2018 has the great honour of welcoming one of the most renowned and influential contemporary artists in the person of Christo (82). An emblematic figure of New Realism along with his late wife Jeanne-Claude (1935-2009), the inseparable duo has come to be known in particular for their wrapping
of historic monuments and large-scale landscape installations. It is one of his historic work from the 1960s that will be presented at BRAFA.
The work specially chosen by Christo for BRAFA is titled Three Store Fronts (1965-66). This sculpture was first displayed at the municipal Van Abbemuseum in Eindhoven, the Netherlands. Later it was included in the exhibition Christo and Jeanne-Claude: Early Works, 1958-69 at the Martin-Gropius-Bau in Berlin in 2001. More than 14m long and 2.5m tall, it will also be the largest work ever on show at BRAFA!
In 1963, still in Paris, Christo had begun making the Show Cases. He acquired small glass display cases or medicine cabinets at the flea market and turned their function around by hanging fabric or pasting paper on the inside of the panes. In some cases he illuminated the inside of the showcases with a light bulb or suggested luxurious decadence by lining the inside with satin or silk.
If the Show Cases were more like little meditations comparable to the early Wrapped Cans or Packages, the proportions of the life-sized Show Windows and Store Fronts that were done after Christo and Jeanne-Claude had emigrated to New York in 1964 recalled the gigantic dimensions of New York architecture.
BRAFA 2017 pays homage to an artist who is a major influence behind contemporary art, Julio Le Parc. Born in 1928, a pioneer of Op Art and Kinetic Art, a founder member of G.R.A.V. (Groupe de Recherche d’Art Visuel), winner of the international Grand Prize in Painting at the Venice 1966 Biennale, Julio Le Parc is a forthright, committed artist. His abundant work, in its many forms, imbued with a spirit of research and experimentation, explores the visual field, movement, light, and the relationship between the work and the viewer.
“We want to interest spectators, release them from their inhibitions, make them relax. We want to get them to participate. We want to put them in a situation which they themselves initiate and transform. We want them to be oriented towards interaction with other spectators. We want to develop a great capacity for perception and action in the spectator.” – Julio Le Parc.