Another Hong Kong gallery, Over the Influence
, located on Central’s Hollywood Road, sold out its booth of greyscale, cartoonish paintings by
, said director Julliana Choi. The works ranged in price from $3,000 to $18,000.
Lee’s work is “quite hot right now,” Choi said. Much of the work was presold right before the fair opened, she added, to collectors in Asia, Europe, and the United States.
Not everyone has been pleased with Hong Kong’s rapid development, however, nor to the changes at Art Central. Hong Kong dealer Luke Chapman, who directs A2Z Art Gallery, told the South China Morning Post
that “there’s no loyalty” at Art Central. Chapman’s gallery had previously shown at the fair but wasn’t accepted this year; he said he was planning to apply for Art Basel in Hong Kong next year.
Dozens of local and regional galleries that, like A2Z, have previously showed at Art Central may now be looking for alternatives. In other cities, such as London, New York, Basel, and Miami, this has led to a proliferation of satellite fairs orbiting the main event, with upwards of 20 fairs running concurrently to Art Basel in Miami Beach alone.
At the same time, the team behind ArtHK (the Hong Kong fair that Art Basel bought
in 2011) announced last week
that they will launch a new fair, Taipei Dangdai, next January in the Taiwanese capital; meanwhile, the Shanghai fair Art021 is set to launch a Beijing edition in May. Will galleries trade Hong Kong’s famously frictionless business climate for opportunities elsewhere in the region? Or will Hong Kong, whose gallery scene is growing by leaps and bounds, see its fair infrastructure expand in tandem?