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Following countless cancellations and postponements in 2020 and 2021, the fair is the first major art world event to be bumped from its slot in 2022.

TEFAF Postpones Maastricht 2022 Fair

TEFAF Maastricht 2020. Courtesy TEFAF.

The European Fine Art Foundation (TEFAF) has confirmed that the 35th edition of their fair in Maastricht, the Netherlands, will not go ahead as planned from 12 to 20 March 2022.

According to TEFAF Chairman, Hidde van Seggelen, 'This was a difficult, but necessary decision, guided by three key concerns: first is the unpredictable nature of Covid-19; second, the significant financial risk to both TEFAF and our exhibitors should the fair be cancelled in the lead up to March; and third is, as always, the health and safety of the TEFAF community, our exhibitors, visitors, sponsors, and partners.'

The decision was likely forced by galleries unwilling to shoulder the cost of a potential cancellation.

According to French trade association Comité Professionnel des Galeries d'Art, at least 30 dealers withdrew from the fair following an email on 4 December communicating that exhibitors would forfeit their €7,500 (US $8,500) deposit if the event were cancelled after December 15. The likelihood of that happening increased after the Netherlands saw a spike in Covid-19 cases brought on by the Omicron variant.

Van Seggelen pointed out that TEFAF is a non-profit foundation, and after cancelling five fairs so far due to the pandemic, they would need funds from galleries to continue.

'TEFAF is a highly-anticipated global benchmark for the art world community and as such, we are exploring all options to ensure the fair takes place during 2022,' van Seggelen said.

He told The Art Newspaper that the new date would be 'outside the [winter] danger zone months of Covid'.

The 2021 edition of TEFAF Maastricht was postponed from March to September before ultimately being cancelled. The 2020 edition closed four days early after an exhibitor tested positive for Covid-19.

Exhibitors at TEFAF Maastricht in 2020 included Axel Vervoordt, Cardi Gallery, Galerie Max Hetzler, and Waddington Custot.

Plans for TEFAF New York, scheduled for 6 to 10 May 2022, remain unaffected. —[O]

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