Look back of Art Paris Art Fair 2021, France

Art Paris 2021, as the first art fair to be held in the world after lockdown restrictions were lifted, last from 9 to 12 September 2021, at the Grand Palais Éphémère on the Champ-de-Mars. This new edition promises to be a wonderful breath of fresh air, a moment full of art to see and people to meet. Art Paris 2021 confirm Paris’ unique dynamic and its place in the world contemporary art market.

Art Paris remains faithful to its tradition of artistic diversity and openness. New galleries, established artists, upcoming talents: the entire spectrum of contemporary art was represented at the fair. For its 23rd edition, Art Paris was the first arts event to be held in the Grand Palais Éphémère. The major Parisian galleries have responded to the call and the Grand Palais Éphémère’s nave welcome galleries representing regional art scenes, 141 galleries taking part this year, with some twenty European galleries, as well as galleries from other continents.

This unique edition bringing together 141 modern and contemporary art galleries from 23 countries stands out thanks to a dazzling selection of exhibitors marked by the arrival of leading art galleries. Both regional and cosmopolitan, Art Paris plays host to large, prestigious galleries alongside small independents mainly from Europe, but also from such far-flung locations as South Korea, Colombia, the Ivory Coast, Guatemala and Uruguay. The brilliant younger generation of gallerists also features prominently, thereby confirming the fair’s vocation to discover new talent.

The main theme of the 2021 edition is the return to painting. In Portrait and Figuration. A Focus on the French Scene, independent exhibition curator HervéMikaeloff presents his perspective on the revival of figurative painting in France with a selection of 20 artists from amongst the exhibiting galleries. The tribute to this medium extends beyond the bounds of the French scene. Indeed, a lot of exhibitors have chosen to align with this theme and their exhibits reflect the resurgence of figurative painting – regularly considered a thing of the past in France, but more alive than ever.

Art Paris encourages the presentation of monographic exhibitions spread throughout the fair. These solo shows allow visitors to discover or rediscover in depth the work of modern, contemporary or emerging artists. The “Solo Show” sector is specifically highlighted in the fair’s communication and promotional materials.

Presented exclusively at Art Paris 2021, the Ether (Equality) project is the result of the collaboration between Japanese artist Kohei Nawa and the NFTs platform Danae.io Ether (Equality) materializes the fall of a drop of water and symbolizes the equality of all beings and everything in the face of gravity. This monumental work, which was installed in 2022 the tip of Île Seguin, was accompanied by an augmented reality application, educational and democratic, accessible to all free of charge.

Art Paris also encourages the presentation of monographic exhibitions. “Promises”, a sector focusing on young galleries created less than six years ago, provides a forward-looking analysis of cutting-edge contemporary art, whilst supporting young galleries and emerging artists in the “Promises” section, which provides a forward-looking perspective with cuttingedge contemporary galleries from Abidjan, Guatemala City, Marseille and Paris.

The international modern and contemporary art fair is paying tribute to the French scene, the support provided to young galleries and emerging artists is of fundamental importance in these unusual times. Focusing on discovering and rediscovering artists, Art Paris puts the spotlight on independent and emerging galleries. Art Paris also encourages the presentation of monographic exhibitions, whilst supporting young galleries and emerging artists in the “Promises” sector that brings together around ten exhibitors.

Although this latest edition of Art Paris does not contain the entire universe, it does however invite visitors to explore the revival of figurative art in France, a fascinating theme that brings together twenty artists selected by curator Hervé Mikaeloff. In parallel, solo shows throughout the fair provide an opportunity to discover the work of established or emerging artists.

Art Paris adopts a sustainable approach that is a first in the world of art fairs. Art Paris, organised by France Conventions, is a regional art fair that gives pride of place to proximity, drawing local visitors and favouring local transport solutions. In the longer term, the aim is to develop a tool for designing environmentally friendly art fairs.

Art Paris was the first modern and contemporary art fair to take place in the Grand Palais Éphémère in September 2021. During the renovation of the Grand Palais, this structure host the major art, fashion and sporting events usually held in the Nave, such as Art Paris, the Saut Hermès and the Chanel fashion shows, as well as cultural and art events.

The Grand Palais Ephémère, a provisional 10,000-m2 building conceived by the Réunion des Musées Nationaux. Located on the Plateau Joffre on the Champ-de-Mars, the Grand Palais Ephémère is written into the history of this site, recalling the place it occupied during the great Universal Expositions of the 19th and early 20th centuries. The architectural choice of a curved double-vault framework confers on the building a scale and presence in keeping with the Champ-de-Mars and blends seamlessly into this prestigious venue.

Holding these events in a central, prestigious space in the capital during the renovation works at the Grand Palais ensure their success, as well as preserving the role of Paris as world capital of art and culture. With the Grand Palais Ephémère, the ambition of the Rmn – Grand Palais and Paris 2024 is to propose a model that is exemplary in terms of simplicity and environmental responsibility, and emblematic of the cultural, environmental and sporting aspirations of our time. Its architecture and design, together with the international events it host, combine to express this ambition.

Art Paris has established itself as a major Art fair for Modern and Contemporary art. This 2021 edition bring together 140 galleries from over twenty countries, displaying art spanning post-war to the contemporary period. Art Paris 2021 distinctive feature is a special emphasis on the European scene combined with the exploration of new horizons of international creative hubs in Asia, Africa, the Middle East and Latin America.

French Scene
Since 2018, Art Paris has consistently supported the French contemporary art scene by inviting curators to lend a subjective, historical and critical eye and to design a special project highlighting French artists featured at the fair. For 2021, guest curator Hervé Mikaeloff share his perspective on contempo- rary French artist with Portraiture and Figuration. A Focus on the French Scene, bringing together some twenty artists around the theme of the por- trait and the renewal of figurative painting in France.

Solo Show
Since 2015, Art Paris has encouraged the presentation of monographic exhibitions – a key moment in artists’ careers – by inciting galleries to present specific single artist-focused projects. About twenty “solo shows” are scattered. These private exhibitions enable to shine a light on the talent of guest artists.

Among the exhibitions awaited: a rare selection of polaroids and black and white photographs by Andy Warhol at the Galerie Italienne; a private exhibition dedicated to Mozambican artist Gonçalo Mabunda by Galerie Caroline Smulders, famous for his thrones made of weapons and war munitions; a tribute to Iranian artist Mojé Assefjah at the Galerie Tanit whose abstract painting celebrates gestuality.

The “Promises” sector host over 10 young galleries with less than six years of existence, provides a forward-looking analysis of cutting-edge contemporary art, whether it hails from Guatemala with La Galería Rebelde, Africa on the stands of 31 Project and Véronique Rieffel, China with Galerie Marguo, or Europe with two galleries from Marseille (France), Double V Gallery and Le Cabinet d’Ulysse, and Parisian exhibitors Hors-Cadre, Pauline Pavec and Septieme Gallery.

Special Project
In March 2021, with the Japanese artist Kohei Nawa, Danae.io has won the public competition launched by the local authority Département des Hauts-deSeine to build a 25 meters tall Equality statue on the Seguin Island in Paris. It was a unique public art monument towering at the center of the Seine river. A scaled model of the statue was exclusively shown at Art Paris Art fair. The Equality statue, inspired by Kohei Nawa’s series Ether, is the representation of the fall of a drop of water and symbolizes our equality in the face of the force of gravity. Danae.io develop a free Augmented Reality experience equally focused on education and entertainment.

Danae.io is the only French NTFs platform developed in partnership with contemporary art galleries and sponsored by BPI France. It has recently partnered with Hedera Hashgraph, a decentralized public network owned and governed by the likes of Google and IBM. With Hedera Hashgraph, Danae.io provides a highly secured technology and traceability for NTFs artworks.