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Galleries were positive about the engagement from local collectors when the world's oldest art fair finally took place this week.

Art Cologne Sees Strong Sales in Anticipated Return

Brett Charles Seiler, Leak In The Apartment (2021). Bitumen and roof paint on canvas. 160 x 138 cm. Courtesy Galerie EIGEN + ART Leipzig/Berlin.

More than two years since its last edition, Art Cologne is at last underway. The fair looked in doubt when the number of Covid-19 cases in Germany spiked last month, but it nevertheless opened on 17 November at the Koelnmesse exhibition centre, where it continues until 21 November.

Helpfully, galleries were offered a 34% discount on their booths thanks to a subsidy the fair received from the German government's Neustart Kultur fund.

Galleries Ocula Magazine spoke to were enjoying the buzz of the fair and reported a number of sales.

'It is great to be back at Art Cologne again,' said KÖNIG GALERIE's Johann König.

Matthias Weischer, Supper (2021).

Matthias Weischer, Supper (2021). Courtesy KÖNIG GALERIE.

König (Berlin / London / Seoul) presented works by artists Norbert Bisky and Chiharu Shiota, among others, as well as a solo presentation of Conny Maier's paintings as part of the NEW POSITIONS programme.

Early in the fair, the gallery's sales included Rinus Van de Velde's It is we, the mysterious plural, who decide what you get to see (2021) for €34,000.00, Matthias Weischer's Supper (2021) for €79,000.00, and Katharina Grosse's o.T. (2021) for €230,000.

Galerie Eigen + Art (Leipzig / Berlin) presented six young artists including Louisa Clement and Brett Charles Seiler, all of whom are presenting at a major art fair for the first time.

Antoni Tàpies, Relleu diagonal (1962). Mixed media on canvas. 56 x 47cm.

Antoni Tàpies, Relleu diagonal (1962). Mixed media on canvas. 56 x 47cm. Courtesy Galeria Mayoral.

'It was a great experience for us to see how interested and open the collectors are, and how they could then spontaneously decide to make purchases, adding these new artists to their collection,' said the gallery's owner, Gerd Harry Lybke.

Jordi Mayoral of Galeria Mayoral (Barcelona / Paris) said he was happy with the fair's atmosphere and the opportunity to connect with new collectors. The gallery, which specialises in Post-War Spanish art, sold works including a mixed media on canvas piece by Antoni Tàpies, which went to a German collector.

Other reported sales include the Sarah Buckner painting Untitled (Bacchanal) (2021) for an undisclosed sum at Esther Schipper (Berlin), and two editions of Jonas Weichsel's glossy Interstellar Painting (2021) for €17,000 each at Galerie Thomas Schulte (Berlin). —[O]

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