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Zilkens' News Blog

Dr. Stephan Zilkens

Stephan Zilkens

Zilkens' News Blog 11 2023

And the Oscar goes to "Everything Everywhere All at Once" as best film and six more of the androgynous objects. Fantasy before reality - in a way, the Academy remains true to itself. "Nothing New in the West" won a respectable four Oscars: Best Foreign Film, Best Cinematography, Best Scene Picture and Best Soundtrack. Congratulations to all involved. Unfortunately, Claudia Roth is not coming back to Berlin today - the airport is on strike because unscrupulous trade union bosses of all gender (perhaps you don't want to call them Führer in a parasocialist organisation) are screwing with the wage-price spiral, which, as a result of disproportionate wage increases, further restricts the flexibility of politics, if they were serious about the debt brake, and in particular makes people whose income is based on easily learnable skills unemployed, because their work can be replaced by machines that are less prone to strikes. Quite incidentally, this then also hits the backbone of German prosperity, because the classic family businesses cannot go, large corporations can. From the point of view of communist doctrine, this development is even desirable, since it leads to further concentration of capital, which is necessary so that, according to Karl Marx, the revolution will finally come.

Since last Thursday, a temporary museum has been opened in Maastricht that shows the enormous variety and quality of artistic design over several millennia and genres. And anyone who wants to can buy. The current commented press review of TEFAF by Stefan Kobel.

In about two weeks' time, the exhibition "Worth Fighting For" , which we were able to show in Cologne from 14 November to 14 December 2022 with the help of a wide range of support, will then be available in a virtual version. Explanations of the individual chapters and individual works will be available in German, English and Ukrainian. Even if a virtual tour only partially reflects the actual expression of an exhibition and its effect, it is worthwhile to preserve this exhibition in this way.

Art Cologne will be shortened by one day - but we are sticking to our plan to offer an art insurance talk on Friday, 17 November at 10:00 a.m. in the Europasaal of the Cologne Fair, where everyone who cares about art insurance can find out about current developments. The topic is not yet fixed, but after the experiences with the insurance industry so far with regard to the war in Ukraine started by Russia and its consequences, it is tempting to put the topic of war risk in general on the agenda. Prominent representatives of the risk carriers are currently still more than reluctant, and unfortunately this also applies to the courageous women among them.

While fighting is still going on in eastern Ukraine, many forces are already working on preparations for reconstruction, even under war conditions. For the investors, this is also about securing their risks. At the moment, it is not even possible to get simple fire, tap water or storm insurance, pointing to the problems in the infrastructure, the reinsurers and seemingly difficult demarcations in what can be a loss event and what is not insurable due to the war. Ukraine just cannot wait until the big ones like Munich Re, Swiss Re, Gen Re, Score, Hannover Re, Lloyd's make capacities available to the smaller primary insurers. It is not a huge market, despite its size. But when investments, partly secured by state guarantees (it is said that the USA also assumes the war risk for American investors), begin and amount to several hundred billion, the conditions for a post-war economy are created. Even if one may not believe it in times of McKinsey, Bain and Co. - there is supposed to still be something like loyalty towards those who have taken their own risks in times of crisis. So if the traditional providers are not available, one has to create insurance-like constructions with the help of offshore capital to fill the gaps. If you are interested, please contact us. We are currently working on solutions with Ukrainian partners in Luxembourg.

For more than 30 years, the information service KUNST has appeared every fortnight in a confusing layout reminiscent of hectographed publications of the 1970s and whose editor-in-chief Karlheinz Schmid publishes a polished, bold language. In the last issue of 9 March, the 772nd, he vehemently champions press freedom and art criticism: "The fact that journalists are slipping more and more into the sidelines with each passing year, that publishers are depriving them of the platform of publication or diverting them to digital morsels, not least for economic reasons, is not a German or European phenomenon. It can be observed all over the world, especially since in many countries there has never been freedom of the press or it is abolished as soon as an autocratic regime somewhere finds itself being watched closely and thus distanced." He seems to mean less publicly financed sensational journalism, it is probably more about the increasingly harmless criticism of art and its causes.

The finance minister in Germany has dared to do what is a matter of normality in Switzerland: he wants to prevent expenditures that cannot be financed - and thus ban tax increases. Some journalists don't like this because they are somehow suspicious of freedom and thus also of the responsibility of the individual.

On 1 March, I had forgotten, it was my 40th professional anniversary - fresh from university, I was first allowed to get to know freezer contents insurance and vending machine insurance before they let me near the art insurance that was just being set up at Nordstern.

We wish you a proper and serene start to the week.

The team of Zilkens Fine Art Insurance Broker GmbH in Solothurn and Cologne and Stephan Zilkens

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Dr. Stephan Zilkens | Zilkens Fine Art Insurance Broker