The New York Times is trying to make news out of their Berlin conference on the art market by turning one panel conversation into a news story. And they’ve got it!
David Zwirner, Marc Glimcher and Elizabeth Dee all discussed subsidizing smaller galleries at art fairs through higher booth prices for the major galleries. Dee even outlined the math on how it would effect her own fair.
Attention then turned to Art Basel’s Marc Spiegler who was caught offguard:
“In principle, it’s great,” so long as the stands were paid for and the fair made a profit. “But the question is how many galleries at the top of the market are willing to subsidize the rest of the fair.” “We have no issue with the idea of trying to work more closely in terms of helping the younger galleries at the fair,” he said, “but the way to do that, the algorithm for figuring out how to do this, is difficult to reach.”
As PR, it is a brilliant move on Zwirner’s part. The fairs are not likely to be able to pull it off but Zwirner has already established himself as being on the side of the little guys.
David Zwirner Proposes ‘Tax’ on Large Galleries at Art Fairs (The New York Times)