Art dealers' fair in Dusseldorf cancelled

Society Materials 14 February 2008 22:19 (UTC +04:00)

( dpa )- A planned art fair in the German city of Dusseldorf was cancelled Thursday as art dealers complained too many cities were trying to muscle into the modern art business.

The show, Duesseldorf Contemporary (DC), was first held last year and its turnout disappointed planners. Similar fairs in Berlin and Frankfurt have also vainly sought to nibble away business from Germany's venerable Art Cologne fair.

The fair in Cologne, which has struggled against competition abroad, abandoned this week controversial plans to hold a satellite fair this year on the Mediterranean Spanish island of Majorca.

The fairs all offer booths to dealers hoping to line up millionaire German buyers for modern and contemporary art.

Publicists for DC said the crisis in the business was leading to restructuring and uncertainty in the sector, with a shakeout in prospect. A statement said DC was in merger talks with other, unidentified art fairs.

DC, an offshoot of German magazine publisher Gruner und Jahr, had planned a four-day run April 17-20, simultaneous with Art Cologne, only 35 kilometres away.

Art Forum Berlin in the German capital recently announced a postponement, while the Frankfurt Fine Art Fair announced last month it would not take place at all.