Long running ‘The European Fine Art Fair’ (TEFAF) has evolved into what could be considered as one the most important fine art fair of its kind, and of its time. TEFAF has had over a quarter of a century seen success by a willingness to evolve and change with the current trends ensuring its continuing achievements.
Starting in 1975 as ‘Pictura Fine Art Fair’ in Maastricht as a bi- annual fair, it offered old master paintings and sculpture. Within a decade saw respectful growth in visitors and galleries exhibiting, and merged with ‘De Antiquairs International’ in 1985, by 1988 the fair became an annual event. 1991 saw the introduction of modern and contemporary art to the fair; and 1996 the name of the event changed to what it is now recognised as TEFAF (TEFAF Maastricht, 2015).
In 2000 TEFAF, now a globally recognised institute for excellence within the art market gave confidence to visitors and dealers alike, by bringing in the ‘Good Title’ initiative, using the employment of the Art Loss Register (ALR), which guaranteed full provenance, quality and legitimacy for every piece exhibited and sold (TEFAF Maastricht, 2015).
Specialised art economist Dr Clare McAndrew, was enlisted in 2008, to generate a special report focusing on the trends affecting the globalised art market, a survey using comprehensive intelligence fr...
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...lore all avenues of the art market. It also given its visitors new consideration to what art is. Without alienating any demographic of buyers, still focusing heavily on antiques and Old Masters, TEFAF has subtly introduced Night Fishing as an incentive to attract a new catchment of buyers, investors and collectors, without losing focus on its core audience.
Projecting into the future, TEFAF will inevitably continue to diversify, to keep open all prospects of new dealers and buyers. Using Clare McAndrew’s annual report compiled with TEFAF; has estimated the art market to be worth €51 billion, €9.8 billion generated by art fairs that collectively attracted over one million visitors (Kinsella, 2015). With the enormous growth of the art fair, and a willingness from TEFAF to expand its routes, The European Art Fair will continue to prove its worth long into the future.
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