The Melbourne Art Foundation has regretfully announced that the Melbourne Art Fair 2016, due to be held in August at the Royal Exhibition Building has been cancelled following the withdrawal of a number of high profile galleries.
“The aim of the Foundation is to always showcase the best Australian contemporary art and support living artists and their galleries,” says Anna Pappas, Chair Melbourne Art Foundation. “With a new and expanded vision planned for the 2016 Fair, we needed the full support of our constituents in order to generate national interest, support satellite events and attract international collectors.”
“This week, a number of high profile galleries no longer felt able to make the required commitment to the 2016 Fair and withdrew their applications for exhibition spaces. Whilst this situation is deeply disappointing, the Board understands the economic imperatives of commercial galleries, and the many shifts in the global contemporary art market.”
“A decision as to the future of the Fair beyond 2016 will be made in due course after further careful assessment by the Board. The Board would also like to thank galleries and artists for their continued support,” said Pappas.
In addition to the Fair, the Melbourne Art Foundation has instituted the commissioning of large-scale works by living Australasian artists and has donated them to major public institutions in Australia. The Foundation has also initiated the Melbourne Art Foundation Awards for the Visual Arts in celebration of excellence and outstanding contributions to the Australian contemporary arts sector.
For 28 years, the Melbourne Art Fair has stimulated critical and commercial attention for galleries and their artists by presenting a rich and diverse cross-section of the region’s visual art scene and directly contributing to the livelihood of living artists.
Inaugurated in 1988 by the Australian Commercial Galleries Association (ACGA), the Melbourne Art Fair is one of the world’s longest-running art fairs and has provided Australian and international audiences with Australian contemporary art over three decades. It has presented cutting-edge platforms curated by leading professionals to showcase the newest developments in the visual arts.
For more information, visit: www.melbourneartfair.com.au for details.
Image: Ian Burns, Clouds, Melbourne Art Fair Commission 2012