SP-Arte 15th edition welcomed 36,000 visitors and had a record number of artwork donations to museums and cultural institutions

11 Apr 2019

SP-Arte closed its fifteenth edition on Sunday, 7 April, attracting 164 art and design exhibitors from 14 different countries to São Paulo’s Bienal Pavilion. With works by over 2,000 artists, SP-Arte hosted 36,000 visitors during the five days of the event – a record number during its 15 years of existence., SP-Arte is delighted to confirm its 16th edition for next year’s cultural calendar, which is set to take place from 1 to 5 April 2020.

“Celebrating our 15th anniversary, this edition was very special to us and SP-Arte surpassed all expectations. Many galleries exceeded their sales goals and the outcome was very positive. Additionally, our record number of visitors is a reflection of how the wider public sees SP-Arte as an essential platform for culture in Brazil,” comments Fernanda Feitosa, SP-Arte’s founder and director.

In its 15th edition, SP-Arte had a powerful donation programme, in which artists, galleries and private collectors acquired works and donated them to public arts institutions. Approximately 70 pieces were offered, a significant increase from 2018, when nearly 20 works were selected for donation.

“One of the donations was acquired by SP-Arte itself: the performance by Cristiano Lenhardt (Fortes D’Aloia & Gabriel) was given to Pinacoteca de São Paulo collection. Other institutions that benefited from donations include the Masp, MAM and MAR,” notes Fernanda Feitosa. Works by further acclaimed artists include Claudia Andujar (Vermelho), José Bento (Galeria Millan), Melvin Edwards (Alexander Gray Associates), Artur Lescher (Nara Roesler), Waldemar Cordeiro (Luciana Brito Galeria) and Sônia Andrade (Athena Contemporânea) are among the donated pieces.

SP-Arte saw strong sales throughout the week. Among the Brazilian galleries celebrating its sales results is Bergamin & Gomide, which sold valuable works by artists such as León Ferrari, Celso Renato, Maria Leontina, Hélio Oiticica and Robert Rauschenberg. We always get a great outcome during SP-Arte, but this year it went beyond our expectations,” says Antonia Bergamin, Bergamin & Gomide’s director.

Brazilian galleries Mendes Wood DM, Fortes D’Aloia & Gabriel, Galeria Millan and Almeida & Dale celebrate the demand for acclaimed modern and contemporary artists, including Tarsila do Amaral, Tunga, Sonia Gomes, Ernesto Neto and Rubem Valentim. “SP-Arte has been fundamental in the development of the contemporary art scene in São Paulo for the last 15 years. We have participated since its early editions and it is interesting to see how galleries, fairs and institutions can come together to create a powerful artistic landscape,” says Alexandre Gabriel, partner-director of Fortes D’Aloia & Gabriel.

Antônio Almeida, director of Almeida e Dale, commented “We were surprised by the presence of so many Latin American collectors, a clear increase in numbers from past editions. Collectors, experts and appreciators of Brazilian art came to see the exhibition.” The gallery sold three important works, among them a study of Abaporu, by Tarsila do Amaral, and a set of paintings by Wesley Duke Lee.

In addition to the most acclaimed national galleries, some of the most influential names in the international art market were at SP-Arte. David Zwirner (New York), Lisson Gallery (London), Galleria Franco Noero (Turin), Galleria Continua (San Gimignano), Elba Benitez (Madrid) and Alexander Gray Associates (New York) reinforced the event as the primary international arts and design platform in Latin America. Greg Lulay, partner at David Zwirner, notes that “We were pleased to have participated in SP-Arte for the seventh year in a row, and are always excited to meet and engage with new collectors from São Paulo and Latin America.”. Works sold by the gallery include valuable pieces by Josef Albers and Carol Bove, whose work will be presented at the La Biennale Arte 2019 which opens in Venice in May.



When the collections of institutions expand, national culture inevitably benefits. Under this premise, SP-Arte promotes its donations programme, which, in the 15th edition, had a record number of participants. Collectors, including a younger set, donated approximately 70 works to Brazilian cultural institutions.

The MAR museum (Rio de Janeiro) received works by both well-established and emerging artists, such as Artur Lescher, Caio Reisewitz, Thiago Martins de Melo, Jaime Lauriano, Élle de Bernardini and Giovani Caramello. In turn, the MAM was gifted a set of eleven works that will be integrated to the museum’s collection, including an installation by Laura Vinci, videos by Letícia Parente and Regina Vater, and photos by Claudia Andujar.

Similarly, an artwork by Melvin Edwards was donated to the MASP by the artist himself, represented by the New York gallery, Alexander Gray Associates.



SP-Arte drew the attention of established international institutions and collectors. “We are very pleased with the presence of strong institutions representatives from the Tate, MFAH, MCA Chicago and Malba, which attended the event in pursuit of works to expand their respective collections,” notes Fernanda Feitosa.

Founder and president of the Malba, Eduardo Constantini, acquired a series by Peruvian artist Fernando Bryce (Espaivisor, Spain), one of the highlights of the Solo sector, and two works by Brazilian artist Rivane Neuenschwander (Fortes D’Aloia and Gabriel, São Paulo). Curator of the Latin American sector at the Tate Modern, Inti Guerrero, acquired a video by Analívia Cordeiro (Aninat Galería, Chile), presented in the Masters segment for the Argentinian museum’s permanent collection.

From greater São Paulo, the Figueiredo Ferraz Institute bought a piece by renowned artist Dora Longo Bahia (Vermelho, São Paulo).

Additionally, Madeleine Grynsztejn director of the Museum of Contemporary Art of Chicago, and Mari Carmen Ramirez, chief curator of the Department of Latin American Art at the Houston Museum of Fine Arts were in negotiations to acquire Latin American works during SP-Arte’s week.


Sculpture Park

Openspace, SP-Arte’s newest curated sector, broke with the traditional booth format, taking a series of sculptures and installations selected by Cauê Alves, curator-general of the MuBE, into the outside space of the Bienal Pavilion, thus allowing the general public to have a more profound interaction with the works presented at SP-Arte.



Now in its fourth edition, the Design sector welcomed 45 exhibitors, divided into five specific categories: Modern, Contemporary, Architects, Independent Designers and Antiques. Displayed on the third floor of the Pavilion, the sector once again highlighted iconic Brazilian furniture – creations by renowned national design artists like Joaquim Tenreiro, Sérgio Rodrigues, Lina Bo Bardi, Jorge Zalszupin and Zanine Caldas, as well as pieces by contemporary designers such as Jacqueline Terpins, Jader de Almeida and Hugo França.

Gerson de Oliveira, Ovo’s director:“This edition consolidated the Design sector; the segment grew in terms of the number of exhibitors as well as quality,” adding“This transition was reflected in the visible increase in number of visitors. Being able to carry out launches at SP-Arte is, without a doubt, an unparalleled opportunity, because we are able to reach a large number of professionals at once, presenting our work to the market and reactivating relationships with existing clients.”

Celebrating the centenary year of the birth of one of the most important names in Brazilian design, the Ocupação Zanine Caldas exhibition reconstructed the creative universe of the architect and designer, presenting furniture from his private studio, bringing the public behind the scenes of his productions.

In the first two days of the Fair, the installation Tempo [Time], by Jacqueline Terpins attracted the attention of visitors on the third floor of the Pavilion. The designer shares: “I have participated in the Fair since 2016, the first edition of SP-Arte to present a design segment. I have observed, first-hand, the growth and consolidation of the dialogue that this international event promotes between the diverse cultural expressions in art. In this edition, after three years of presenting my works as a designer, I also had the pleasure of occupying a space with the reedited Tempo installation, originally exhibited in 1955 in the Nara Roesler Gallery, São Paulo.”



Beyond the SP-Arte Acquisition Prize, which awarded the performance by Cristiano Lenhardt with a donation to the São Paulo Pinacoteca, two other prizes were offered to participating artists. Marcelo Moscheta (Vermelho) received the Prêmio de Arte Marcos Amaro, earning a R$ 50,000 scholarship (USD 13,000). Also, the artist will have a budget of up to R$ 45,000 (USD 12,000) to develop an entirely new project, to be exhibited at the Fábrica de Arte Marcos Amaro, in Itu, São Paulo, in parallel with the 16th edition of SP-Arte.

Paul Setúbal (Andrea Rehder Arte Contemporânea) was the winner of the 7th SP-Arte Residency Prize. The artist will be awarded a three-month-long stay at the Delfina Foundation in London, one of the most prestigious organisations offering residencies in the arts world.


The 15th edition of SP-Arte was sponsored by Itaú, Vivo, Iguatemi and Stella Artois.


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