Strategist, entrepreneur and collector Hergen Wöbken takes us on a journey into the Brazilian art scene.
“The reason for my visit to Brazil was because of a study of the art market of German-speaking countries, which we initiated for Latitude, a partnership between ABACT (Brazilian Association of Contemporary Art) and Apex-Brazil (Brazilian Trade and Investment Promotion Agency). Gallery owners in Brazil are interested in the art scene in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. It was fun to discuss the institutions we have at home with the external view of people outside the country. During these encounters at presentations, workshops and in personal conversations I got to know numerous gallery owners – as well as many other art locations, museums, cultural centers and off-spaces of the vibrant city of São Paulo.
Brazil is in a deep crisis that also affects all players in the art world, yet whilst visiting the galleries of São Paulo, one is hardly aware of it. Some of the galleries are so large that they resemble small museums and their art education plays an important part at these events and locations, with extensive information material on the exhibitions and the artists at hand.
For the first time, SP-Arte has added a new feature to its program for this year, “Gallery Night”. Kicking off the fair week, select galleries will open their doors at night for a special tour. Fernanda Feitosa, the director of SP-Arte, was very excited about the innovations in the fair program and was particularly delighted to see so many young people, the up-and-coming art collectors; two thirds of the visitors are between 25 and 50.
My wishes for the art scene and all the players in São Paulo are that the current crisis will soon be a question of the past.”