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Zilkens'
News Blog

Zilkens' News Blog

Dr. Stephan Zilkens comments weekly on current events concerning art. Subscribe for free

Venice Biennale - German Pavillion 2024
Venice Biennale - German Pavillion 2024
Dr. Stephan Zilkens

Stephan Zilkens

Zilkens' News Blog 21 2024

With only 4 weeks to go until the opening of Art Basel in Basel, the signals from the auctions in New York are cautious. Euphoria looks different. No wonder - the world has changed significantly since 24 February 2022. A war of aggression in Europe is the opposite of peace, which the German Rosa Luxemburg, aka Sarah Wagenknecht, is pretending to have the choice of in the European elections. In general, it is striking that the slogans of the parties in the European elections actually have nothing to do with Europe. The German Chancellor has even gone so far as to demand a minimum wage, which can safely be called populist. He is not helping the art trade either - not even the young graduates of the narrow art history programmes at German universities, who are finding it difficult to find work in the art trade given the costs involved.

Against this backdrop, art fairs are now an additional challenge for collectors and dealers - because property is also an increasingly difficult investment - temporarily. The same applies to classic cars as an asset class. Chinese collectors are interested in their own art history, Russian collectors are not interested at all. Younger buyers still need to be inspired and their eyes trained. A high-price fair with First Choice, VIP and normal visitor frippery in expensive Switzerland is supposed to do all this? It will be interesting to see - it won't be down to the hospitality of the Swiss. Perhaps the results of the European elections will help? No shift to the right everywhere? A commitment to freedom and personal responsibility? Or do we close the entrances for European development, like the designers of the German Pavilion at the Biennale?

Our energy should be directed towards the defence of a free Europe that not only speaks of common values but also lives them tolerantly. However, this also implies being open to other customs. The future of Europe does not lie in the production of cargo bikes and cycle paths if we still want to afford a bit of culture.

Stefan Kobel has plenty of insights into last week's art market coverage.

An optimistic start to the shortened week to everyone

Stephan Zilkens and the team at Zilkens Fine Art Insurance Broker GmbH in Cologne and Solothurn

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