Artissima 2016: highlights

Artissima, Turin / Italy

November 17, 2016

November 3–6, 2016

Artissima 
Oval, Lingotto Fiere
Turin
Italy

info [​at​] artissima.it

www.artissima.it

Artissima—Italy’s most regarded contemporary art fair—directed for the fifth year by Sarah Cosulich, closed on November 6. 

During its four days (November 3–6), Artissima welcomed 50,000 visitors, a continual growth that has positioned the fair among the unmissable events of the international art calendar. Capable of inspiring interest among both professionals and the general public, Artissima confirmed its quality, its great geographical span and, above all, its capability to innovate and introduce new formats.

The 2016 edition consolidated Artissima’s specific identity focused on experimentation and characterised by a strong curatorial imprint which keeps attracting new collectors from all over the world. 

A snapshot of Artissima 2016
193 participating galleries representing 34 countries (Iran, South Africa, China, Japan and Argentina among others), with an international presence that accounted for 65% of the exhibitors (67 Italian and 126 from abroad); seven sections of the fair, of which three were directed by committees of international curators. As ever, an enormous turnout of international curators and museum directors—more than 250 in number—of which 60 were actively involved in the different initiatives of the fair. More than 2,500 collectors from around the world (in particular Europe, South America, the Middle East and the US), as well as the boards of five international museums.

Artissima featured particularly high level presentations with booths often developed around a curatorial project—as in the Back to the Future, monographic presentations, which this year focused on the decade 1970–89.

Present Future, the solo projects by 20 young artists specifically produced for the occasion, proved the extent of its great geographical research.

PER4M, created in 2014, was curated this year by the Dutch collective If I Can’t Dance, I Don’t Want To Be A Part Of Your Revolution, who developed a unique performance programme taking place both at the fair and in outdoor spaces around Turin.

Initiatives
Great success was experienced by one of Artissima’s special projects: the Walkie Talkies, a series of informal conversations that explore the fair through the eyes of couples of collectors and curators in dialogue among the booths.

This year the thematic exhibition In Mostra, entitled corpo.gesto.postura (body.gesture.posture) and curated by Simone Menegoi, combined for the first time major artworks from museums and foundations in Turin with significant loans from private collections. 

Prizes and acquisitions
Finally, Artissima 2016 increased the number of prizes awarded at the fair to a total of seven, reiterating Artissima’s concrete commitment to supporting galleries and artists.

–The illy Present Future Prize was awarded to Cécile B. Evans, presented by Galerie Barbara Seiler, Zurich, for the work What the heart wants (2016). 

–The Sardi per l’Arte Back to the Future Prize was awarded to Galerie in situ – Fabienne Leclerc, Paris, that presented a project on Lars Friedrikson.

–The Prix K-Way Per4m was awarded to Juliette Blightman, presented by Galerie Isabella Bortolozzi, Berlin, for her piece Now, Soon, Wait (2016).

–The Owenscorp Prize for New Entries was awarded to Cavalo gallery, Rio de Janeiro.

–The Reda Prize for photography was awarded to Joanna Piotrowska, presented by Madragoa gallery, Lisbon.

–The Fondazione Ettore Fico Prize was awarded to Gian Maria Tosatti, presented by Lia Rumma gallery, Naples and Milan.

–The Mutina recognition “This is not a Prize” was awarded to Giorgio Andreotta Calò, presented by Sprovieri gallery, London.

With a budget amounting to 400,000 EUR, Fondazione per l’Arte Moderna e Contemporanea CRT acquired in the fair works for the collections of Castello di Rivoli Museo d’Arte Contemporanea and GAM – Galleria Civica d’Arte Moderna e Contemporanea di Torino. Furthermore many local and international museums were very active in terms of acquisitions at Artissima.

Special project
The 2016 edition of Artissima also inaugurated Flying Home, a surprising parallel off-site project by Thomas Bayrle, curated by Sarah Cosulich and produced in collaboration with Sagat – Torino Airport.

With this project, which Bayrle specifically conceived for the baggage claim area, Artissima offers to the city and its visitors a new experience: a major public artwork by a great international artist in an unexpected location with the aim of connecting Turin in an unprecedented way. 

Thomas Bayrle’s Flying Home, a spectacular lightbox installation, reveals the mechanisms of the construction of his mammoth piece Flugzeug (Airplane, 1984), a large-scale print of a plane that is made up of millions small aeroplanes on a 96-square-metre surface. Highlighting this time the complex manual process of his practice, Bayrle hints at the backstage of the airport: the human side that is hidden in its functioning, yet fundamental to the definition of the total composition. The airport is seen as a machine whose perfect functioning depends upon hidden gears and implicit human energies, thus becoming a metaphor for the relationship between man and society, the individual and the whole, process and product. 

The project will be running through Sunday, May 28, 2017.

At the conclusion of the fair, Director Sarah Cosulich said:
“Having guided Artissima for five years, has been a great responsibility and an enormous privilege; shaping the fair’s identity, imagining its growth in prestige and fostering high-profile innovation and experimentation in dialogue with hundreds of galleries, collectors, international curators, sponsors, journalists and partner institutions. Our objective has always been to produce a fair that can dialogue with the world, and this year—even more—we have made significant progress towards that direction, having received a tremendous and enthusiastic response from the art scene worldwide, from institutions and from the general public. I wish to thank all of those who have allowed me to experiment, to innovate—even sometimes to dare exploring unchartered territory—in order to make Artissima what it is today. On this day I present it back to the city after a five-year adventure: this fair is a place of encounters and thought, an economic asset for an entire territory and an engine to foster the development of the art of our time.”


Artissima is a brand of Regione Piemonte, Città Metropolitana di Torino and Città di Torino. Artissima is organised by Artissima srl, a company founded in 2007 to manage the fair’s artistic and commercial relationships and is owned by Fondazione Torino Musei, established by Città di Torino to support, manage and enhance the artistic and museum-based heritage of the city. The 23rd Artissima is being put on with the support of the brand-owning authorities, jointly with Compagnia di San Paolo, Fondazione per l’Arte Moderna e Contemporanea CRT and Camera di commercio di Torino.

The event involved the collaboration of:
Main partner: UniCredit
Partners: illycaffè, K-Way, Lancia, Lauretana, Leica, Mutina, Owenscorp, QC Termetorino, Reda, Fondazione Sardi per l’Arte, Torino Airport – Sagat
In kind-sponsors: Artek, Calligaris, Cappellini, Carloangela, Carpet Edition, Cassina, GL Events Italia – Lingotto Fiere, Guido Gobino, Halifax, Kartell, Lago, Nemo Lighting, Parco1923, Poltrona Frau, Vitra
Official carrier: Gondrand
Media partners: La Stampa, AD, Vogue Italia
Media coverage: Sky Arte HD
In-kind online partner: Artsy