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The time has come: this evening, the exhibition "Worth Fighting For" will open in a former car dealership at Oskar-Jäger-Strasse 97-99 in Cologne on 2,400 m². The Museum Ludwig in Cologne, for example, only has about 1,600 m² available for temporary exhibitions. The opening speech will be given by Berivan Aymaz, Vice-President of the State Parliament of North Rhine-Westphalia, as the Minister of State Claudia Roth has fallen ill at short notice. We wish the latter a speedy recovery. Frank Plasberg's last appearance on "Hart aber Fair" tonight at 9:15 pm is no reason to stay away from the opening - the vernissage will be over by then. The exhibition would not have been possible without the help of institutions and companies: We are happy to name here once again all those who have helped so far: The Federal Commissioner for Culture and Media, the Ministry for Culture and Science NRW, the Kunststiftung NRW, Art Asyl e.V., Victor Pinchuk Foundation, Pinchuk Art Centre, M HKA, Art Cologne, Liberty Special Markets, Rotary Club Köln-Ville, Mannheimer Versicherung, Uniqa Versicherung, HDI Global Specialty Versicherung, Kunsthaus Lempertz and the company Rhein Alarm, as well as many unnamed donors to whom you might also belong. Please send your donations to: Rotary Deutschland Gemeindienst e.V. IBAN DE80 3007 0010 0394 1200 00 and please enter in the reason for payment: Club No. 21929 Project 0219292322 "Worth Fighting For" . You will then receive a tax-deductible donation receipt. Now, starting tomorrow, as many as possible should find their way to the exhibition, which is open daily - including Mondays - between 10.00 a.m. and 6.00 p.m. and admission is free.
The Red Wave in the USA has failed to materialise - in the Senate, the Democrats retain the majority, thanks to Cortez Masto, who was able to prevail in Nevada against Trumpist Adam Laxalt. The decisive vote in the Senate is now held by Kamala Harris, who otherwise does not make an appearance. There hasn't been a more silent vice president in a long time.
Allianz chief Oliver Bäte last week expressed concern about potential developments in the future due to worsening business conditions. Inflation, energy and climate crises as well as war in Europe are leading to dwindling confidence. But confidence is the fuel that keeps us active. A lack of confidence means that no one takes risks and makes courageous decisions. One might think he was also talking about the insurance industry, which is not prepared to insure normal risks in Ukraine worldwide because the definition of indirect war damage does not exist. Until lawyers cut the Gordian knot, it will take a few decades and eat up exorbitant fees. A courageous decision would be to decide pragmatically without confusing legal advice, which usually exculpates itself and refers to the decision-making competence of the courts, how to insure risks in Ukraine against what. In the thicket of claims arising from this, the D&O insurers would then get cold feet and would presumably reject the claims on the grounds of intent (i.e. having deliberately demonstrated entrepreneurial courage). A hyper-complex legal but also tax system is also part of the deteriorating framework conditions. Where are those who offered a tax return on a beer mat? The resulting staff cuts can easily be absorbed: The logistics industry is urgently looking for drivers of all genders to supply mankind with goods.
On Wednesday, Art Cologne starts with the Preview and the galleries hope that the tailwind of last week's auction results will also catch their offerings and make the fair very successful. The ups and downs of the stock markets in recent years are certainly an argument for recognising something of value in art for generations to come. However, the gut should always be involved in the decision-making process and the power of the work should outweigh the fixation on its potential value development.
In this spirit we wish you all a happy and eventful week - in 5 weeks it will be Christmas ...
Yours, Stephan Zilkens and the team of Zilkens Fine Art Insurance Broker GmbH in Solothurn and Cologne