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  • Zoltan Alexander

nº25 / MASTERPIECE 2018

The 9th edition of Masterpiece at the Royal Hospital Chelsea, offered an unparalleled opportunity for networking, champagne, and connoisseurship.


Masterpiece's inimitable strength is its ability to transcend

the traditional pigeonholing of art into cultures

Philip Hewat-Jaboor

Chairman of Masterpiece


Interviews and featured galleries, artists by Zoltan Alexander

Private walk with Paul Freud

Marina Abramović at Factum Arte Foundation (Madrid), Chiharu Shiota at Blain Southern Gallery (London), Syrie Maugham, Michele Oka Doner, Mattia Bonetti, Barnaby Barford and Sebastian Errazuriz at David Gill Gallery (London), Alexander Calder, Paul McCarthy and Larry Bell at Hauser & Wirth Gallery (London), Bam Bogart at Vigo Gallery (London), Brigitte Bouquin-Selles at Davies Street Gallery (london), Rob and Nick Carter at Ben Brown Fine Arts (London), Jenny Holzer, Marc Quin and Boris Savalev at Factum Arte Foundation (Madrid), Andy Warhol at Galerie von Vertes (Zürich)


Masterpiece 2018 / © video by Zoltan Alexander ZOLTAN+MEDIA

With dear friend, Paul Freud, we took a golf car at the entrance of Chelsea Bridge Road to drive to the 9th edition of Masterpiece at the Royal Hospital Chelsea, the ultimate glitzy meeting place colliding with the Mayfair Art Weekend.

What sets Masterpiece apart from other art fairs is the eclectic set-up and juxtaposition design, art, antiques, furniture, precious jewellery collections and speedboats. The fair offers an unparalleled opportunity for networking and champagne, but also a passion for beauty and connoisseurship.

This year the fair has expanded both in size and scope and was the strongest yet. With flow of visitors, we walked through 6,000 years of art history from some 160 renowned galleries worldwide and selected significant art pieces from Masterpiece 2018.

Factum Arte Foundation / “Five Stages of Maya Dance” by Marina Abramović / Photo © Courtesy of ZOLTAN+MEDIA


At the entrance, Masterpiece Presents welcomed the visitors with a spectacular edition in light and stone, a phenomenal immersive work by Marina Abramović.

It was a collaboration with Factum Arte Foundation from Madrid using an advanced 3D scanning. Abramović has created a mesmerising body of work that pushed once again all the boundaries of her experimental vision.

We walked through her projected portrait on a fine mist of water to enter a low-lit exhibition space dedicated to the “Five Stages of Maya Dance", a splendid and wild series of alabaster sculptures. Walking around the five cutting-edge pieces, Abramović's haunting presence decomposed into intricately carved of 3D Chinese ink landscapes.

At this point in my life, I decided to capture my performance in a more permanent material to face mortality. Alabaster, with its immutable, translucent and luminous qualities proved the perfect material for my experiment.”

Blain Southern Gallery / Installation by Chiharu Shiota / Photo © Courtesy of ZOLTAN+MEDIA


Making a statement, a spectacular installation was presented by Blain Southern Gallery with Berlin-based Japanese artist Chiharu Shiota. She has created a site-specific installation that filled the entire booth with a web of interlacing red yarn trapping lost objects and suitcases symbolising the existential question of identity.

David Gill Gallery / (left) Work on paper “Atlas” by Michele Oka Doner, Sofa “Shield” by Mattia Bonetti, Coffee Table “Paragon” by Mattia Bonetti, (right) Mirror “Riot” by Barnaby Barford, Armchair “Elle & Lui” by Mattia Bonetti / Photo © Courtesy of David Gill Gallery


The much-anticipated installation of David Gill Gallery was highly inspired by the poet and Surrealist patron Edward James. Gill was fascinated with him after coming across his house sale some years ago. He illustrated at the time how interiors can mix a Picasso with contemporary bookcases and period furniture.

The presentation at Masterpiece combines a pair of Syrie Maugham bookcases and a range of 21st-century design pieces to recapture the atmosphere of James's original library. In the heavily draped interior, the desks were overflowing with books, a Michele Oka Doner’s bronze bust, a Mattia Bonetti lounge chair, alongside with pieces by Barnaby Barford and Sebastian Errazuriz.

Hauser & Wirth Gallery / “Venice Fog, VFZ 2 ” by Larry bell / Photo © Courtesy of Hauser & Wirth Gallery


Among the distinguished newcomers, the contemporary powerhouse Hauser & Wirth Gallery presented “Wunderkammer” of modern and contemporary artworks alongside 19th-century furniture, a delicate mobile by Alexander Calder and Paul McCarthy’s new work "White Snow Flower Girl" putting the emphasis on cross-collecting.

The gallery also presented Larry Bell, one of the most renowned and influential artists to emerge from the Los Angeles art scene of the 1960s, known foremost for his refined surface treatment of glass and explorations of light, reflection and shadow through the material.

The large cubic glass work “Venice Fog” is a piece of new laminated glass with colour combinations inspired by the marine fog, which rolls into Venice CA, the location of Bell’s studio. With the constant presence of the misty Sea Salt colour of the exterior glass his sculpture allows two colours to be fused together through reflection and refraction.

Although we tend to think of glass as a window, it is a solid liquid that has at once three distinctive qualities: it reflects light, it absorbs light, and it transmits light all at the same time.”

Vigo Gallery / “Ploeglucht” by Bam Bogart / Photo © Courtesy of ZOLTAN+MEDIA


Vigo Gallery was another newcomer at Masterpiece presenting a group show including the much-loved Dutch expressionist painter Bam Bogart.

Bogart’s work was dedicated to exploring the materiality of paint, using it as a sculptural medium. He blurs traditional notions of painting and sculpture by building three-dimensional pieces with thick layers of material, comprised of natural ingredients of a mix of mortar, siccative, powdered chalk, varnish, and raw pigment, applied to large, heavy wooden backing structures.