Expo Chicago 2024 Proves City Is Strong Player On Global Art Stage

Expo Chicago 2024 Proves City Is Strong Player On Global Art Stage

By: Julia Brenner

In its first year as part of the Frieze network—which also acquired the Armory Show in 2023—Expo Chicago managed to balance its notably friendly Chicago atmosphere with a strong showing from the global art market. This past Sunday, Expo concluded the 11th edition of its annual four-day fair, with over 35,000 visitors and robust sales from 170 galleries representing 29 countries and 75 cities.

“In our 11th edition of Expo Chicago, we are grateful to now be part of the Frieze family,” said Tony Karman, President and Director of Expo Chicago. “There was a tangible sense of excitement around this year’s edition, a sentiment echoed by our patrons and gallerists, translating into strong sales and an energized atmosphere at the fair and throughout the city.”

While the overall art market has been down in recent years, impressive sales were reported by multiple galleries over the course of the four-day fair. “We experienced remarkable sales at Expo Chicago this year,” said Michael Kohn, founder of Michael Kohn Gallery, adding that the fair offered his gallery “the opportunity to reunite with friends and cultivate new relationships within Chicago's thriving arts community.”

Additional sales highlights include: McCormick Gallery sold a painting by Mary Abbott for $525,000 and a painting by Perle Fine for $195,000; Sundaram Tagore sold paintings by multiple artists, including Hiroshi Senju for $385,000; Miles McEnery Gallery sold a painting by Wolf Kahn for $150,000; Yarger Projects sold a light sculpture by Mads Christensen for $175,000; Catharine Clark Gallery sold a textile by Marie Watt for $135,000; Gana Art sold works including Chiharu Shiota’s Endless Line for $121,000; Hagkojae sold a wood sculpture by YUN Suknam for $100,000; Nassau-based TERN Gallery completely sold their curation of mixed-media works by Kachelle Knowles on the first day of the fair.

This year’s Expo also reflected a continued evolution in terms of scope and global representation. Edwynn Houk, founder of NYC-based Edwynn Houk Gallery noted, “as an exhibitor since the 1980s, I’ve enjoyed the growth of Expo. This year I’ve especially appreciated the broader and more international vision of the fair.” Jodi Minnis, curator of Nassau-based TERN Gallery stated that “the fair has been really great for us. The work was well received, and everyone was inviting and open to experiencing new galleries and practices, which is important for us as an international gallery.”

For Kristell Chadé, executive director of fairs at Frieze, the latest iteration of Expo was “a pleasure” to experience. Chadé was particularly pleased by the “ongoing enthusiastic exchange between gallerists, patrons, and curators,” as well as the enhanced layout, which was tailored to highlight emerging galleries alongside their more established peers.

Like so many of the exhibitors and attendees this year, Karman was invigorated by the changes ushered in by Frieze, yet he underscored that Expo is still a love letter to Chicago’s cultural legacy. “Expo Chicago’s overall success was amplified by the overwhelming support of Chicago’s civic and cultural community who align with us each year to welcome the world.”

via Forbes.