This commentary on the announcement of Zwirner Galleries new location is available AMMpro subscribers. First time monthly subscribers get a 30-day grace period. Curious readers are welcome to subscribe to the monthly option and cancel before being billed.
From Miami to Brooklyn to Chicago and far beyond, art and real estate continue to merge. Yesterday's announcement in the New York Times that David Zwirner would be moving to a new $50m gallery in Chelsea only served to underscore the trend that ranges from developers buying large-scale art works to anchor complexes to real estate agents staging homes with borrowed art works and, as Architectural Digest recently pointed out, developers taking booths at art fairs to pitch their projects.
In Chicago, Jeanne Gang’s highly anticipated Vista Tower—set to be completed in 2020—is expected to be the pinnacle of luxury living in the Windy City. […] In September, Vista Tower set up a booth at EXPO Chicago, the city’s large annual gathering of contemporary art galleries—Chi-Town’s take on Art Basel—to spread the word, and Robin Tebbe, Magellan’s chief marketing officer, says that this partnership attracted substantial buyer interest. “Our buyers tend to be supporters and connoisseurs of the fine arts,” Tebbe says. (Vista’s units are on the higher end, ranging from around $1 million to $17 million.)
In New York City's highly competitive real estate market, Chelsea developers have begun to use galleries as the kind of anchor tenants that raise the value of the apartments above.
Like hotels offering rent-free space to top chefs and restaurateurs to tone up their brands, Chelsea real estate developers are tapping brand-name galleries to differentiate their projects.
That's what seems to be happening with Zwirner's new space. Although the Times presents the move as Zwirner's, the announcing article is filled with clues to what might really be going on here.
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