Preparing a big event is a hectic endeavor, and there are few artworld events bigger than fairs. Knowing that the seventh edition of the Discovery Art Fair is the most massive to date, 140 exhibitors have made quite the buzz setting up and preparing their booths. During the installation process and expecting the press and the first visitors on Thursday, it was a challenge to discern particular highlights in the superabundance of styles. Still, the isle walks, the exhibitor talks and keen viewership have made it easier to create a selection of booths that are not to be missed at this edition of the Cologne’s friendliest art fair.
Before the list, it’s important to mention that all spaces of the beautiful XPOST are filled with art – even the historical vaulted post office from the late 19th century! Acceptance of new exhibitors allowed the fair to welcome even more emerging artists to the official scene and help the slow process of the (not only local) art scene development.
And now, in no particular order, deliberately omitting the obvious famed choices, here is a selection of gallery booths you should not miss when visiting our buzzing art event.
Wolfram Voelker Art – Booth B1
At the fair dedicated to contemporary art and with a soft spot for emerging creatives, big names and modernist classics are not a usual sight. However, Wolfram Voelker Art gallery not only welcomes people coming into the great hall, but offers a walk down the art history lane through works by Georg Grosz, Robert Rauschenberg and Gerchard Richter, shown side by side with a more contemporary selection of pieces. Great spot to instill some excitement into a young collector’s inspiration!
30works – Booth E1
One of the biggest Discovery Art Fair exhibitors, 30works gallery, is back this year with a big sectioned booth close to the entrance to the main hall. From the big portraits by Salva Ginnard and Anna Schellberg, the booth offers a fair of its own, taking you on to the Petra Roess-Nickel’s repetitive abstractions, extravagant fantasies by Benjamin Burkhart and latest decollages by urban art star AVone.
Galerie Kunstbroeders – Booth D1
Browsing around the first row of galleries there is a dynamic space filled with art made by contemporary Chinese artists. This booth belongs to Galerie Kunstbroeders from the Netherlands, a specialized gallery providing insight into contemporary Chinese art and allowing more European collectors to add outstanding paintings, prints and sculptures to their collections. Pay attention to the small sculptures is all we can say!
Galerie Z22 – Booth D4
A renowned establishment from Berlin, Galerie Z22 has a booth toward the middle of the hall, presenting works by six contemporary artists. The densely populated booth is filled with works by Danielle Benvenuto, Benka, Andreas Kurus, Lars J. Fischedick, Silvio Ukat and especially the wonderful photographs by Katerina Belkina decorating the outer wall of the fair stand.
ATM Gallery – Booth F2
Also a Berlin native gallery, ATM is showing an amazing curation of artists well known in the street art sphere. While some of them, such as Innerfields, still practice muralism, all of them have fruitful studio practices. Make sure to check out a large piece by Danny Gretscher and take a look around to learn what spray paint mastery looks like. At the booth, there are also works by Emess, Josephine Kaiser and Kai Staudacher.
CasaGalleria – Booth G14
Towards the back of the hall stands one of the best designed booths of the fair. It belongs to CasaGalleria from Rovio, Switzerland bringing the visitors a unique experience of Yuri Catania’s nocturnal photographs and digital works. What makes the presentation special is an assortment on NFTs sitting against the right booth wall, available for purchase at the fair, but also at the dedicated websites such as Foundation, OpenSea and Rarible. The space is space of rest fo an eye keen on aesthetics, which goes hand in hand with the artist’s contemplations on beauty and nature.
Ingallery Project – Booth E3
A very different one-artist presentation comes at the stand of Ingallery Project. Dedicated entirely to Armenian artist Karen Shahverdyan, the space provides a great overview of his practice. A figurative painter, Shahverdyan delves in conceptual ponderings on one of the pioneers of abstraction, using a black square as a focal point. The works are meditative, interactive and well-painted, which makes Inngalery Project booth a must-see.
no/mad utopia – Booth G3
Coming from Beirut, no/mad utopia is dedicated to promotion of the artists coming from the Middle East. Its star at the Discovery Art Fair in Cologne is Lebanese Salah Missi, a master draughtsman whose poignant pieces cover the back wall of the booth. Along with Missi’s work there are pieces by two more young artists Lilia Benbelaïd and Alaa Itani.
Galerie Haus Schlageneck – Booth D10
At the end of the hall stands the booth of Galerie Haus Schlageneck, a well curated space populated by art of Sebastian Fritzsch. From small scale drawings, to the large-format paintings on burlap and even sculptural pieces, the stand provides a deeper look into the artist’s style and body of work, offering young and experienced collectors a chance to acquire works. Fritzsch’s graphic, associative pieces alternate throughout the booth, without overwhelming the visitor – a tough task at such a populated art fair.
INS – Institut fuer Inszenierung – Booth L6
At the loft level, under the old vaults of the once post office space, there is a small space where INS – Institut fuer Inszenierung is showing conceptual works by two artists Sabine Reibeholz and Marc von Reth. This free-standing booth showcases the most interactive installation at the fair, Auge des Sturms, an immersive experience for the observer, perfect to round up the stimulating, but attention-demanding visit to the fair or to just take an art break.
Come and join us at XPOST Cologne and experience art with us!