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Don’t want hit-and-run tourism in Venice: Alberta Pane

One doesn’t need an excuse to visit Venice. But the ongoing Biennale Architettura 2018 — 16th International Architecture Exhibition (through November 25) is a good enough reason if you need one. Given the popularity of Venice as a tourist destination, it
Travel

Don’t want hit-and-run tourism in Venice: Alberta Pane

One doesn’t need an excuse to visit Venice. But the ongoing Biennale Architettura 2018 — 16th International Architecture Exhibition (through November 25) is a good enough reason if you need one. Given the popularity of Venice as a tourist destination, it isn’t a surprise that there are as many ‘Top Things to do in Venice’ lists as the searches you launch for this query. We, therefore, speak to a local — gallerist Alberta Pane of her eponymous Venetian gallery — to understand how to make the best of a trip to Venice without doing the usual touristy things. She also cautions against overdoing the touristy gig in Venice — it’s a World Heritage Site and the immense pressure of tourism, especially when the visitors are not mindful of its delicate ecosystem, can actually reduce it to just another misused heritage. Excerpts from the interview:How long have you lived in Venice and what do you like best about being a resident of this city?I was born in Venice and I lived here until I was in my 20s, when I moved to Paris, where I lived for 18 years and opened my gallery.Two years ago, I came back to Venice with the precise idea of opening the second venue of my gallery, because I believe that in Venice there is great potential for a contemporary art gallery, since everyone stops by and there is also the Venice Biennale of Contemporary Art and many new Foundations, museums and now a network of galleries that promote art throughout the year.And I like everything about being a resident here!What are the places in Venice that you would recommend all visitors to the city to not miss, even if they are coming for a short trip?Well, that’s hard to say, everything is surprising in Venice! For sure I would recommend a visit to the Venetian civic museums (such as Ca’ Pesaro, Palazzo Fortuny, Museo Correr, Palazzo Mocenigo, Ca’ Rezzonico...), which provide an opportunity to discover fantastic pieces of art in the context of magnificent ancient Venetian palaces. I would also suggest looking for art galleries and foundations, and visiting the Scuola Grande di San Rocco and Le Gallerie dell’Accademia. Moreover, I find the many paintings scattered in the beautiful Venetian churches fascinating. And get lost in the calli — Venetian narrow streets — that’s the best part!What are your favorite restaurants in the city that you would recommend to tourists as well?I really like Osteria Da Codroma, in calle dei Guardiani, for the very good food, nice people and the authentic Venetian atmosphere far from the most touristic part of the city. I also love the food of Il Vecio Fritolin. Even if the location is not as good as what you eat, the chef has studied in France and you can definitely taste it in his delicious dishes. Palazzina Grassi too is a place I would recommend.Any local dish that you would recommend visitors must try out while in Venice? And the best place to sample it?Definitely cuttlefish with polenta (seppie con polenta in Italian) or spaghetti with clams at Osteria Da Codroma, which, by the way, is just around my gallery.Where do you dash off to when you want a quick coffee and/or snack?I go to Campo Santa Margherita, where there are a lot of bars, tables and chairs to drink a relaxing coffee. I favor Caffe Rosso, their croissants are the best in the city!What are the best bars of Venice to hang out at after a long day?I really like that part of Venice called Fondamenta della Misericordia. Vino Vero is the best bar to hang out at, drinking good wine and chilling out with friends in a very friendly atmosphere, with a fantastic surrounding of course.Where should one head to attend a truly authentic Venice art party, during the biennale?I could not recommend one place specifically. What I love about the biennale is that a lot of Venetian Palaces, often closed to the public, are open. So, I would recommend going in the Palazzi Veneziani to be immersed in the truly authentic atmosphere of the city.Any local activity that one must participate in to get a feel of local Venice?Going to the market of Rialto to buy fresh and excellent food; going for a ‘Bacaro Tour’ with friends, that is to say to go to different bacari (typical Venetian sort of small restaurants where you can drink a glass of wine and eat the famous cicchetti); and just hang out in the Venetian streets and campi: residents spend a lot of their time here.What are the places a little outside of Venice that one can check out in a day’s trip?All the Isles of the Venetian Laguna are worth a daily trip.What would you do if you had a free morning or afternoon?I’d go to the isle of la Giudecca, just a vaporetto stop from the Zattere.Where in the city would you go to catch up on a book or to catch up with a friend?I’d go to Fujiyama, in calle lunga San Barnaba, a cozy tearoom with a hidden internal garden; the perfect place to relax with a friend or read a book quietly. And their cakes are really good too!Where would you advise visitors to go shopping?In the boutiques of Venetian artisans or in the small shops of design and clothing scattered throughout Venice. There is a lot of creativity in the city and it is important to invest on them... Absolute ban on buying knick-knacks and souvenirs for tourists...What’s the best souvenir to take away from Venice? And what are the best places to buy it?In my opinion, the best souvenir of Venice would be the catalogue of Palazzo Fortuny, one of the most interesting museums of the city. Or a nice book bought at Linea d’Acqua, Luca Zentilini’s ancient bookshop.What's the best place to buy art in Venice?Well, definitely my gallery in Calle dei Guardiani! It’s a former carpenter’s shop of 350 square meters, recently renovated and transformed into an evocative exhibition place for Contemporary art. And from my colleagues of the Venice Galleries View!What museums or galleries would you recommend one must definitely visit in the city, even if short on time?I would recommend the Contemporary art galleries of the Venice Galleries View. It’s an initiative made up of research galleries in order to support and enhance Contemporary art in Venice. You’ll find the project map with all the information about the galleries and their exhibitions all around Venice, in hotels and selected other places.Any walking trail you would recommend visitors to undertake to check out the city?Starting from Piazzale Roma, then I’d suggest go to Dorsoduro, reach the Zattere and Punta della dogana. I’d then go towards the Accademia, I’ll cross the Accademia Bridge, arriving in Campo Santo Stefano. By evening, I’d arrive at Piazza S. Marco, after 7 pm, definitely.Vaporetto or gondola, what do you prefer to absorb the sights and sounds of Venice?I’d rather go on foot, which is the best way to absorb the authentic atmosphere of Venice.What is the most overrated thing about Venice that is recommended by all and sundry?Its postcard facade, Venice, on the other hand, is a vibrant city that wants to continue to be one. The Venetians suffer a lot at this time for mass tourism that degrades it without bringing anything. It is very important to respect Venice when you come, to take the time to see it and not to practice a hit-and-run tourism. Venice is a jewel city, fragile, beautiful and a World Heritage Site.Anything that visitors to Venice must be cautious about?Make sure not to fall into the Venetian canals, not to hinder the Venetian people.Anything unusual or any hidden surprises about Venice that guide books do not mention?The best way to experience Venice is from a boat in those canals where there’s no riverbank and no docks. It is a sort of surreal experience: it seems to be in a labyrinth, to be in another world.http://www.blouinartinfo.comFounder: Louise Blouin p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 17.0px Georgia; color: #d81e00} p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 32.0px Arial; color: #232323} span.s1 {text-decoration: underline ; font-kerning: none} span.s2 {font-kerning: none} p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 10.0px 'Times New Roman'} span.s1 {font-kerning: none}

Melbourne Art Fair’s Maree Di Pasquale on the City’s Top Picks

p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; line-height: 16.0px; font: 10.0px 'Times New Roman'; color: #3b3b3b; -webkit-text-stroke: #3b3b3b} span.s1 {font-kerning: none} As the flagship event of Melbourne Art Week — the Melbourne Art Fair, the 2018 edition of
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Melbourne Art Fair’s Maree Di Pasquale on the City’s Top Picks

p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; line-height: 16.0px; font: 10.0px 'Times New Roman'; color: #3b3b3b; -webkit-text-stroke: #3b3b3b} span.s1 {font-kerning: none} As the flagship event of Melbourne Art Week — the Melbourne Art Fair, the 2018 edition of which runs August 2–5 — will feature 40 galleries that showcase contemporary artists from Australia, New Zealand and the region. When it was spearheaded in 1988, the Melbourne Art Fair was the first commercial fair of the Asia Pacific to establish a network for collectors within the Australian art market.A multifaceted program beyond the fair itself adds further dimension: The Project Rooms serve as a non-profit platform to present experimental work, a roster of interviews and panel discussions that promote dialogue and education around contemporary art practices and the global art market, and a site-specific video sector, TIME, extends across the city, focusing on female artists including Michaela Gleave (Anna Pappas Gallery, Melbourne) and Sriwhana Spong (Michael Lett, Auckland).Maree Di Pasquale, the Director and CEO of the Melbourne Art Fair since June 2017, came to this position after serving as a founding Director of Art Central Hong Kong (2014-2016). Pasquale revealed her favorite addresses for where to get good vintage items, where to stay out, al fresco, until 3 am, and — no small feat— where to sip the best coffee in Australia.BLOUIN ARTINFO spoke to Pasquale about the Melbourne Art Fair and the many attractions of the Australian city. Excerpts from the interview:How long have you been living in Melbourne?I have had a home here for seven years, and been living full-time since 2015.What are your “can’t leave without seeing this” recommendations for the city?Melbourne is more about experience than sightseeing. It’s about laneways, hidden rooftop bars, great food, live theater, experimental exhibitions and blockbuster museum shows. Although, if you are lucky enough to visit during summer, I would recommend a visit to MPavilion: a bold architecture commission and cultural laboratory developed by arts patron Naomi Milgrom AO. The 2018 MPavilion is designed by influential Barcelona-based architect Carme Pinos of Estudio Carme Pinos.What is the most overrated thing people advise visitors to check out when they’re in town?Brighton bathing boxes.What restaurants and/or cafes would you recommend (and what makes them unique)?Melbourne institution Cafe Di Stasio (St Kilda) with its white-jacket waiters, clean flavors and work by Melbourne-based, internationally recognized artist Callum Morton. Cumulus Inc. on Flinders Lane for breakfast — it’s worth the wait in line — and Miss Korea in Box Hill, an amazing Korean BBQ restaurant which is 14 km out of the city.What would you do if you had a free morning or afternoon in Melbourne?Take myself to Heide Museum of Modern Art: a public museum and modernist architectural icon with a rich social and artistic history that brings together art and architecture of the 20th and 21st century. The museum has an ambitious exhibition program and stunning sculpture garden that fills you with an overwhelming sense of nostalgia.Where would you head for the best shopping? Melbourne’s central business district and look out for favorites Lucy Folk on Crossley Lane and Marais on Bourke. Head to Collingwood for vintage design at Modern Times, Smith Street Bazaar, and Bruce boutique for vintage fashion.What’s an authentic item you could only buy locally?ST. Ali coffee beans by Salvatore Malatesta. Best coffee in Australia.Where would you recommend people stay when they visit? (i.e. favorite neighborhood, and/or favorite specific hotel/s?)QT Melbourne on Russell Street. Immaculate rooms with an impressive art collection developed under the guidance of Amanda Love, the hotel is in the heart of the fashion and gallery district and boasts a great rooftop bar.What are the best venues to check out exhibitions or collections in the city?Southbank Arts Precinct is home to many of Australia’s most important institutions, galleries and major events, including the new Melbourne Art Fair. I highly recommend a visit to the National Gallery of Victoria, Australian Centre for Contemporary Art (or ACCA as its affectionately known) and the newly opened Buxton Contemporary, a University of Melbourne museum formed from the extraordinary gift of collector and philanthropist Michael Buxton. The best part is that they are all within walking distance from one another.What are the best places to buy art?I am an advocate for commercial galleries and Melbourne has some of the best in the world. For those that are less familiar with the scene, Melbourne Art Fair is the best place to view a range of works from the region’s most important and exciting artists, represented by the region’s most respected galleries.What are the ideal spots to see live music?Melbourne has managed to protect its live music scene even though it constantly comes under attack by developers and the sensitive-eared. Melbourne’s North-side, Fitzroy and Collingwood, are the best spots to find live music any night of the week.Do you have a favorite book representative of Australia, or author who writes about the region in an especially evocative way?“Picnic at Hanging Rock” by Joan Lindsay has to be one of Australia’s greatest novels.What are your favorite bars to relax in after spending the day at the fair?Siglo, an open-air rooftop terrace on Spring Street, open through 3.00 am, or the delightful Madame Brussels by Miss Pearl.What are you most looking forward to about this latest edition of Melbourne Art Fair?The fair’s new, highly selective format: it presents 40 leading galleries from Australia, New Zealand and Southeast Asia, with a focus on solo presentations. This is quite a departure from previous editions, as is its new location in the heart of the Southbank Arts Precinct alongside the iconic Australian Centre for Contemporary Art.Other highlights include the unveiling of the Melbourne Art Foundation Commission, which in 2018 has been awarded to Ronnie van Hout and commissioned in partnership with Bendigo Art Gallery. There’s the debut of video sector, “Time”: a public moving-image platform that presents the work of four artists across Melbourne, including Jess Johnson’s “Webwurld,” which offers a glimpse into the hallucinatory netherworld of Johnson and her collaborator Simon Ward. You can catch it on the big screen at Federation Square, from July 30 to August 5.http://www.blouinartinfo.comFounder: Louise Blouin p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 17.0px Georgia; color: #d81e00} p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 32.0px Arial; color: #232323} span.s1 {text-decoration: underline ; font-kerning: none} span.s2 {font-kerning: none}     

Cindy Hirschfeld’s Tips to Make the Best of Aspen

Every year, thousands flock to Aspen, Colorado, for its magisterial mountains and unmatched ski runs. While it’s easy to be overwhelmed by the natural beauty surrounding Aspen, it would be a shame to overlook the budding art scene, which is attracting more
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Cindy Hirschfeld’s Tips to Make the Best of Aspen

Every year, thousands flock to Aspen, Colorado, for its magisterial mountains and unmatched ski runs. While it’s easy to be overwhelmed by the natural beauty surrounding Aspen, it would be a shame to overlook the budding art scene, which is attracting more and more artists, galleries, and collectors thanks to art fairs like Art Aspen. From July 26-29, galleries specializing in Contemporary art will convene in the Aspen Ice Garden to showcase their works to collectors, tastemakers, and art enthusiasts. Produced by Urban Expositions, Art Aspen is one of four boutique art fairs Urban stages in cities across the US including Miami, Palm Springs, and Chicago.BLOUIN ARTINFO spoke to Cindy Hirschfeld, a member of the Host Committee for Art Aspen and Editor-in-Chief of Aspen Sojourner, about where to wine, dine, and unwind in Aspen and for recommendations on the many outdoor activities visitors can choose from. Excerpts from the interview:For those looking to take a break from Art Aspen, where might they go for a quiet afternoon?You do not have to be a John Denver fan to appreciate the sanctuary named for him along the Roaring Fork River. Find it behind Rio Grande Park, near the Theatre Aspen tent, and wander among the large rocks engraved with song lyrics, the beautiful wildflowers, and the soothing gurgle of the river. Continue on a riverside walk along the paved Rio Grande Trail.What are some of your favorite restaurants in or around Aspen?Bosq gets high marks for some of the town’s most innovative cuisine; it has a seasonally driven menu that incorporates Asian influences. I haven’t yet been to the new Clark’s Oyster Bar, an outpost of an Austin, Texas-based chain, but I’ve been hearing good things about it. Meat and Cheese Restaurant and Farm Shop has a tightly edited menu that’s always yummy — my favorite is the Vietnamese chicken salad with rice noodles. Chef’s Club’s new summer collaboration with San Francisco-based chef Matthew Accarrino offers a delicious take on modern Italian in a multi-course prix fixe.What’s a favorite bar to unwind after a long day at the art fair?Marble Distillery (in the Grand Hyatt Aspen) makes its own spirits and mixes them into tasty cocktails. Sip one on the patio outside. Hops Culture has some 200 beers and ciders, and small beer garden-style seating area in the middle of the Hyman Avenue Mall. The bar at Jimmy’s is usually happening for happy hour and again late night.Where should one go to catch some live music?Hands down, Belly Up Aspen. It’s a relatively intimate club (holds 450), has an awesome sound system, and draws in acts ranging from up and coming to well-known names (Melissa Etheridge, the Chainsmokers, Spoon) for sold-out shows.What are you most excited for about this year’s Art Aspen?Well, I’m actually on my way to Mongolia right now, so I’ll be missing this year’s event. But you could mention that Aspen Sojourner is hosting a party at the venue on Friday evening, July 27, 5–7 p.m., which will benefit Response, a local nonprofit that helps those affected by domestic violence and sexual trauma.What are some essential cultural offerings of Aspen that festival-goers ought to visit?The Aspen Art Museum, obviously; current shows include Cheryl Donegan, Nina Katchadourian, Larry Bell, Yto Barrada, and Jay DeFeo; admission is free. The building itself, designed by Shiguru Ban, is worth a visit, too; there’s an indoor-outdoor cafe on the rooftop deck. Don’t miss a concert from the Aspen Music Festival and School; there are multiple choices at various venues every day. A favorite Aspen tradition is to sit on the lawn outside of the Benedict Music Tent for the 4 p.m. Sunday concerts; of course, sitting inside the tent is pretty special, too. Theatre Aspen, which showcases actors from around the country, plays Godspell and Our Town the weekend of Art Aspen; the shows also take place inside a tent and offer an incomparably intimate viewing experience. Or check out Emmet Cohen and Christian Sands at Jazz Aspen Snowmass’s JAS Cafe; performances during Art Aspen weekend take place at the Cooking School of Aspen.What summer time outdoor activities would you recommend to visitors?Try to get in at least one hike, whether it’s walking along the level, paved Rio Grande Trail; taking the gondola up Aspen Mountain and exploring some of the trails at the top; or going on a longer outing to a destination like American Lake. Weller Lake, a short ways up the road to Independence Pass, is only a short roundtrip and ends in a lovely alpine setting. E-bike popularity is exploding this summer, as these bikes with a battery-powered assist are now allowed on paved trails; they are also a great way to ride up to the Maroon Bells in a more leisurely way than on a regular bike. The Lost Forest just opened at Snowmass ski area, about 20 minutes from Aspen; do laps on the mountain coaster (you control your speed) or try the new zipline canopy tour or ropes challenge courses.What are some scenic drives you would recommend?The road up Independence Pass is one of my favorite drives in the whole state. Just make sure you’re comfortable with lots of curves and some narrow sections of road. It takes about a half hour to get to the top of the pass (at the Continental Divide) from Aspen. And if you’re driving slowly and enjoying the scenery (which you should), please pull over and let other cars pass on by if you see a line of vehicles in your rearview mirror. The drive up the Fryingpan Valley from Basalt to Ruedi Reservoir is another beautiful tour, lined by red rock cliffs and leading to a large lake.What are three places nearby Aspen you would recommend for a day’s trip?Basalt, where I live, has a totally cute downtown with restaurants and boutiques. Plus, two rivers flow through town; if you like to fish, this is your spot. It’s about 18 miles down Highway 82 from Aspen. Another 15 minutes from Basalt is Carbondale, which has a cool creative vibe and lots of public art around town. Visit the gardens, including a labyrinth and reflexology path, at True Nature Arts Healing Center. A little over an hour from Aspen is the teeny town of Redstone, along the Crystal River. Visit galleries and have lunch poolside at the Redstone Inn; then continue south for another 10 minutes or so to the rustic town of Marble. The ruins of the original marble mill are fascinating to walk through (the quarry still operates today, but doesn’t offer public tours). Eat dinner at Slow Groovin’, a great BBQ joint that’s always busy.What’s the most overrated thing in Aspen?The Woody Creek Tavern. It’s a Mexican restaurant and one of its claims to fame is that Hunter S. Thompson, who lived nearby, used to hang out at the bar. It’s not bad, but very touristy.Where would you recommend people stay in Aspen (a particular neighborhood, street, or hotel)?Most of Aspen’s hotels are within walking distance of anywhere downtown. The Aspen Meadows Resort is a bit farther from downtown on the grounds of the Aspen Institute; it has cool Bauhaus architecture, large rooms, and lovely surroundings. And it runs regular shuttles into town. Or you might consider staying at the Viceroy in Snowmass Village (20 minutes away); Snowmass in summer is just gorgeous. p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 17.0px Georgia; color: #d81e00} p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 32.0px Arial; color: #232323} span.s1 {text-decoration: underline ; font-kerning: none} span.s2 {font-kerning: none} http://www.blouinartinfo.comFounder: Louise Blouin 

All Eyes on Moscow: Garage Museum’s Anton Belov Shares the City’s Top Picks

As the World Cup comes to its final weekend, all eyes are on Moscow. When the games are over, the appeal of the city in summer remains — long, warm days, short nights, and a wealth of cultural capital to explore. Anton Belov is the director of the Garage Mu
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All Eyes on Moscow: Garage Museum’s Anton Belov Shares the City’s Top Picks

As the World Cup comes to its final weekend, all eyes are on Moscow. When the games are over, the appeal of the city in summer remains — long, warm days, short nights, and a wealth of cultural capital to explore. Anton Belov is the director of the Garage Museum of Contemporary Art, Moscow’s premiere private museum for new art. It houses the private collections of founder Dasha Zhukova and Roman Abramovich. Belov spoke to BLOUIN ARTINFO about his favorite aspects of the Russian megacity.How long have you been a resident of Moscow and what do you like best about the city?I was born in Moscow, but on the outskirts near the forest, so my “city center” life started when I went to the University of Steel and Alloys, which is next to Garage in Gorky Park. My real Moscow life began when I was 18. The best thing about this city is that it’s like a Russian merchant with a generous soul who is very open when he sets his mind to something.What are your “can’t leave without seeing this” recommendations for the city?Moscow is impossible without long-distance walking and visiting places like Tverskaya Street. It’s worth visiting the major museums, like the Pushkin Museum with its Impressionists or the Tretyakov Gallery with its amazing Russian collections, from icons to Contemporary art. And, of course, if you want to have the ultimate Moscow experience you should not limit your visit to museums but go to the Bolshoi Theater and see some night life (like bars). Moscow has lots of fantastic restaurants which are good for tourists, like Cafe Pushkin and Dr. Zhivago, and places that specialize in local food like Severyane and Sakhli.What is the most overrated thing people advise visitors to see or visit when they are in town?Things like Red Sqaure or Zaryadye Park or GUM department store (which is basically a huge shop) are really overrated and packed with crowds of people, thousands of them. If you want to have a unique experience don’t stick to the “to do list.” Make up your own program!What are your must-visit restaurants and/or cafes and what makes them unique?I think Coffeemania is amazing. It’s the best cafe in the world. If you want to have a real Moscow experience go to the centrally-located ones, such as the one near the Conservatoire, or those that are open 24/7. I think Severyane restaurant is a must. So is Sakhli: It serves Georgian food, the place is small but feels like home. These are the key places for me to eat. And now there are lots of food markets in Moscow where you can find small restaurants and buy fresh fruit and vegetables.What would you do if you had a free morning or afternoon in Moscow?If I had half a day free in Moscow I would definitely play sport. In summer I like to go to Neskuchny Sad park to work out or just jog. I also like Chaika open-air swimming pool where you can enjoy outdoor swimming in the center of Moscow. Or I might visit other museums managed by my friends, like Multimedia Art Museum and Moscow Museum of Modern Art.What are the bars/places you would recommend to football fans to chill out at after an intense World Cup match?Strelka bar is a great place for foreigners to enjoy the World Cup atmosphere. It’s in the heart of Moscow and is a place for creative people. There’s a really friendly vibe. Definitely a must go place.What are your recommendations for shopping in the city?If you have lots of money, go to Prada. The Moscow store is the best in the world. It’s packed with new clothes and the brand is not that popular in Moscow, so you can always buy amazing things, including products from collaborations (such as with Rem Koolhaas and Burliuk). There are also TsUM and GUM with fashion and luxury boutiques. But if you want something more cool, edgy, and hip, try stores like Leform and Brandshop.Where would you recommend people stay when they visit?There are plenty of big hotels like the Ritz Carlton or the Four Seasons. But if you’re not traveling in a big group then go for something unusual. I recommend Moss boutique hotel, which is in the Kitay-gorod area, near Lubyanka. It’s a unique hotel right in the center of the city.Where would you go in Moscow to quietly catch up on a book or to catch up with a friend?As I spend most of my time at Garage, I meet my friends at Garage Cafe, where we have a great chef. Most of my friends come there to meet me and then I can stay on for other meetings. This works best for me.Which is your favorite bookstore in Moscow?It’s the same with bookstores. My favorite is Garage Bookshop. It stocks around 9,000 titles and new books keep coming. The team brings in the best books from around the world. So I don’t need any other bookstore.What are the best venues to check out exhibitions or collections in the city?You should always check out the Pushkin Museum and Tretyakov Gallery (especially the New Tretyakov, which has 20th-century art). Definitely Multimedia Art Museum and Moscow Museum of Modern Art. And if you have time to go to some unusual places, you should definitely visit a small museum: there are 300–400 of them in the city center. Try the Maxim Gorky Museum in the Ryabushinsky Mansion or the house-museum of the great Russian architect Konstantin Melnikov. They are real hidden gems.Any hidden surprises about Moscow that are not easy to find in travel guidebooks?You never find fascinating museums like the State Museum of Oriental Art or the Melnikov House, which is impossible to visit without advance booking, or the Museum of Architecture, which is a real sleeping beauty because it has an amazing collection but tiny exhibition spaces and insufficient space for its permanent collection of great Russian avant-garde architecture. If you have local friends you should ask them and they will help you to find these treasures.http://www.blouinartinfo.comFounder: Louise Blouin p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 17.0px Georgia; color: #d81e00} p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 32.0px Arial; color: #232323} span.s1 {text-decoration: underline ; font-kerning: none} span.s2 {font-kerning: none} p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 18.0px Times}

Snapshots of Arles with Sam Stourdzé, Director, Rencontres d’Arles

At the Rencontres d’Arles — the longstanding summer photography festival founded in the south of France in 1970 — exhibitions run the gamut from photojournalism to fashion photography to emerging artists to virtual reality immersion. There is also a sec
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Snapshots of Arles with Sam Stourdzé, Director, Rencontres d’Arles

At the Rencontres d’Arles — the longstanding summer photography festival founded in the south of France in 1970 — exhibitions run the gamut from photojournalism to fashion photography to emerging artists to virtual reality immersion. There is also a section dedicated to international photography publishers, celebrating the creativity of the medium in book form.Presented in ancient vaulted churches and Contemporary art venues throughout the Provencal city, this 49th edition, on view July 2-– September 23, focuses on several umbrella themes. The “America Great Again!” sector includes deep dives into the work of Robert Frank, Laura Henno, and Paul Graham. A section called “The World As It Is” surveys shifting global realities, from Turkey’s current socio-political upheaval to Chechnya’s process of healing to China’s arranged marriages. The “Dialogues” section bridges works by Picasso and Godard, as well as Everlyn Jane Atwood and Joan Colom. All of these compelling and diverse shows are overseen by the fair’s director, Sam Stourdze, who formerly led the Musee de l’Elysee in Lausanne, Switzerland. In an interview with BLOUIN ARTINFO, Stourdze discussed the new aspects of the 2018 fair and the region’s can’t miss-architecture, from a large pop-up (adapted from a structure shown at 2016 Venice Biennale) to exquisite centuries-old edifices.How long have you been living in Arles?Since I’ve been the director of the Rencontres, which I was appointed in 2014.What is your “can’t leave without seeing this” recommendation for the city?This year, we’ve built a monumental bamboo pavilion — an exceptional structure imagined by Colombian architect Simon Velez. It’s a 1000 square-meter pop-up along the Rhone river, which provides a very meditative venue within the festival; there will be an exhibition dedicated to the black-and-white photographs of [Buddhist monk] Matthieu Ricard there.Do you have a favorite permanent architectural site?The Cloitre de Saint-Trophime, a chef-d’oeuvre of Romanesque architecture. It’s a classified world monument by UNESCO for its patrimonial heritage.What local tradition would you advise visitors to check out when they’re in town?Meeting the Reine d’Arles and the demoiselles d’honneur— it’s a singular Arles event. Every three years, there are elections for the queen. It’s a popular tradition: you need to know how to dress in the Provencal garb, speak the Provencal dialect…What are your favorite cafes or restaurants?This year, we collaborated with Louis Vuitton City Guides for an 120-page Arles guide that is very complete regarding all the best local spots. I’d rather recommend that.How would you spend a free morning or afternoon in Arles?I would go to the beach 45 minutes outside of Arles, to the Calanques [steep inlets carved into the limestone Mediterranean coast]: they’re magnificent. The Calanque du Grand Mejean is the absolute loveliest.Where would you recommend people stay when they visit?There are two neighborhoods in opposite directions from the city center. On the one hand there’s the Hauture, in the heights of Arles, situated above the Arenes amphitheater: a beautiful area that’s wonderful to get lost in. Then there’s the popular La Roquette, which is the quarter once populated by gypsies and sailors, made up of small streets lovely to wander through.What are the best art venues to check out beyond the Rencontres d’Arles programming?The Fondation Van Gogh is a very pleasant venue where you can see Contemporary art exhibitions. The Musee de Departemental de l’Arles Antique is a referential museum of its kind. There are regular excavations in the Rhone region, which means pieces are added to the collection all the time, like the exceptional bust of Caesar that was recently discovered. Recommended reading: Is there an author — native to Arles or otherwise — who depicts the region especially well?In terms of historical reading, Frederic Mistral is a great Provencal author. In more Contemporary literature, the latest novel by Sylvain Prudhomme, “Legende,” grasped the region very well.This is the 49th edition of the festival. What is unprecedented about this year?We’re adding new exhibition spaces, and they’ll be rather surprising discoveries. The Croisiere, in the city center at the corner of Boulevard Emile-Combes and Avenue Victor-Hugo, is new space we debuted last year; we will open additional floors of the buildings, which will double — almost triple — the exhibition space. We’re a festival, so what’s lucky about that is to have 35 exhibitions all at the same time, rather than one after the other… Thirty-five exhibitions is between eight to 10 years of programming for a single museum! People stay an average of three days and see an average of ten exhibitions. Not all 35 exhibitions, but it’s still quite a lot.http://www.blouinartinfo.comFounder: Louise Blouin p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 18.0px Times} p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 18.0px Times; color: #d81e00} p.p3 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 18.0px Times; color: #232323} span.s1 {text-decoration: underline ; font-kerning: none} span.s2 {font-kerning: none}

In A City Of Perennial Pleasures: Q&A with Philip Hewat-Jaboor, Chairman, Masterpiece London

The fair chairman on his favorite drinks & restaurants, must-visit museums, and London’s lesser-known gems.MASTERPIECE LONDON, (June 28-July 4) is the self-described “cross-collecting” art fair at which visitors can peruse and purchase great works o
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In A City Of Perennial Pleasures: Q&A with Philip Hewat-Jaboor, Chairman, Masterpiece London

The fair chairman on his favorite drinks & restaurants, must-visit museums, and London’s lesser-known gems.MASTERPIECE LONDON, (June 28-July 4) is the self-described “cross-collecting” art fair at which visitors can peruse and purchase great works of art, design, furniture, and jewelry. Of the 160 exhibitors, many are from London, but the fair is truly global, with galleries coming from Geneva to Montreal, Hong Kong to Delhi. Each participant is vetted by a committee of international specialists drawn from academia, auction houses, and museums.Last year, a dedicated large-scale exhibition space called “Masterpiece Presents” debuted, welcoming an immersive work of art by the Chilean artist Ivan Navarro.This year, the showcase will feature a new experimental work, produced in Madrid, by Marina Abramovic: namely a set of alabaster portraits merging performance, light, and sculpture titled “Five Stages of Maya Dance.”BLOUIN ARTINFO spoke to Philip Hewat-Jaboor, Chairman of Masterpiece London, about where he likes to dine solo and his fondness for Sir John Soane.How long have you been a Londoner?I started working for Sotheby’s in 1972 and have remained in London ever since, although I now reside more often in the Channel Island of Jersey.What are your “can’t leave without seeing this” recommendations for the city?The Weston Tower, the extraordinary new addition to Westminster Abbey by Ptolemy Dean, and the gallery to which it leads, should not be missed. The Sir John Soane’s Museum — the architect’s house museum — has been influential from the beginning, and now has newly opened spaces and a really imaginative exhibition program.What is the most overrated thing to see or visit in London?Musicals.What restaurants and/or cafes would you recommend (and what makes them unique)?My all-time favorite has to be the Caprice, which I started going to after its reopening in 1981. The food is consistent and superb, in excellent and comfortable surroundings. The River Cafe opened by Ruth Rogers (Sir Richard Rogers’ wife) and Rose Gray with their pioneering modern cooking, idyllically placed by the side of the River Thames, is also fantastic. They grow much of their own produce and aside from superb food have nurtured a new generation of cooks.What would you do if you had a free morning or afternoon in London?I would probably take myself to the Wallace Collection and wander serendipitously through their collections of French 18th century decorative arts, master paintings and extraordinary arms and armor. Endlessly stimulating.Where would you head for the best shopping?St James’s and Mayfair.What’s an authentic item you could buy locally?Violet and rose cream chocolates from Charbonnel et Walker.Where would you recommend people stay when they visit?It is always best to stay centrally in any city and I would choose Duke’s Hotel tucked away in St. James’s. It is comfortable and has one of the finest bars in London — indeed, the only place for a serious martini or a piscine [most commonly, champagne served with plenty of ice].What are the best venues to check out exhibitions or collections in the city?The obvious museums — The Victoria and Albert, and British Museums, Tate Modern — are essential visiting but perhaps slightly less well known might be the Courtauld Gallery with its remarkable collection of Impressionist and Post-Impressionist paintings and the Dulwich Picture Gallery with its master painting collection displayed in a marvelous neo-classical building designed by Sir John Soane for the collection. Both of these galleries are the collections of individual and philanthropic private collectors.What are the best places to buy art?Art should be always bought from dealers and galleries with whom a relationship of trust is built. Masterpiece is the perfect place for the less well acquainted to buy a great variety of works in all disciplines, offered for sale by highly respected international dealers.What are your favorite bars to relax in after spending the day at the fair?I usually finish very late and if I have no dinner to attend I like to eat on my own at Le Caprice, which is almost adjacent to Boodle’s, the club where I stay in London.What are you most looking forward to about this newest edition of Masterpiece London?June is the highlight of the summer season and a visit to Masterpiece is of course essential. I am very excited about Masterpiece Presents — our new dedicated exhibition space — this year we present a sensational new work by Marina Abramovic, “Five Stages of Maya Dance.”What never ceases to excite me, however, is the extraordinary range of beautiful works of art in all disciplines, drawn from all over the world, that our passionate exhibitors bring to Masterpiece to astonish, delight and tempt.http://www.blouinartinfo.comFounder: Louise Blouin 

Navigating Basel with Elena Filipovic, Director, Kunsthalle Basel

No matter where you are, it’s difficult to avoid hearing about Basel at this time of the year, when the charming Swiss city turns into the entire art world’s must-visit destination, thanks to Art Basel (June 14-17 this year) and the other important fairs
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Navigating Basel with Elena Filipovic, Director, Kunsthalle Basel

No matter where you are, it’s difficult to avoid hearing about Basel at this time of the year, when the charming Swiss city turns into the entire art world’s must-visit destination, thanks to Art Basel (June 14-17 this year) and the other important fairs such as Design Miami/Basel (June 12-17), VOLTA (June 11-16) and LISTE (June 11-17). Even though Basel takes art and culture very seriously — its 40 museums give it the highest concentration in Switzerland — there is a lot more to the city than art.BLOUIN ARTINFO spoke to Elena Filipovic, director of the venerable Kunsthalle Basel, to get an idea of how best to mix art and the rest when visiting this beautiful city by the Rhine. The American-born director has been at the helm of the institution since November 2014. She has a newcomer’s enthusiasm for the city and a local’s knowledge. She shared with us her ideas for making the most from a visit to the city during the wealth of June art fairs. How long have you been living in Basel and what do you like best about the city?I’ve been here three and a half years, which is almost nothing and an eternity at the same time if I think about how much I’ve been lucky enough to see and do since I’ve arrived. The quantity and variety and, above all, quality, of museums and cultural institutions in such a small city, is unparalleled. The citizens of Basel really care about culture and their art institutions, which is exceptional.What are the three best places near Basel that you would recommend for a day’s trip?As France is right around the corner, a day trip to Colmar, a beautiful city not even an hour from Basel, is a great destination. The museum Unterlinden and its extension by Herzog & de Meuron, showcasing the breathtaking Isenheim Altarpiece, is a must-see. Or, a fast train to Paris gets you to the city of lights in about three hours. When heading in the direction of Central Switzerland, you could explore the Emma Kunz Center, including her grotto, where the Swiss artist and healer detected telluric forces.If one were staying on in Basel after the fair, what are the activities in and around Basel you would recommend for a memorable trip?Top on my list would be to visit the Goetheanum in Dornach, just 30 minutes away. It is a wild and amazing piece of architecture inspired by Rudolf Steiner. Another gem is the Botanical Garden, it’s relatively small but a great place. The Natural Pool in Riehen is a lovely alternative to swimming in the Rhine on hot summer days.What are the best places in Basel to unwind after a day at the fair?Have drinks during sunset at Landestelle, located at Basel’s old harbor, with bars, grill, a skateboard park and a nice view over the Rhine.What are your favorite restaurants in and around Basel that you would recommend to visitors to the city?Kunsthalle Restaurant, of course! Every artist who has ever shown at the Kunsthalle upstairs has eaten there, so it is pretty much haunted with great art spirits. And most people don’t know it, but now there is this room at the back of the restaurant (a hidden treasure) where Verner Panton’s 1972 massive mother of pearl chandelier, originally made for his own home, was recently installed. It’s a gorgeous piece of design history…and everyone looks good under that light! Additionally, I really like Rhyschanzli, Volkshaus, Trio, and Goldenes Fass.Any local dish/ produce that visitors must experience?Hache Hornli is a typical dish made of the surprising combination of macaroni, ground meat, and applesauce. It’s still served at the Kunsthalle Restaurant but so is my favorite, the Kunsthalle Burger. And then, of course, there is Fondue, which is best eaten with friends at someone’s home (I learned the Swiss also eat it in summer!).Where should one go to catch the best live music/music scene in the city?The Birds Eyes Jazz Club!What is the favorite outdoor activity of the local residents of Basel that tourists must indulge in for an authentic experience?You must go swim in the Rhine! There is nothing quite like it. There are these special “Fish” bags that are for sale everywhere and you use them to protect your clothing and shoes and phone and then you jump in with it and it doubles as a floatation device. The Swiss really have figured things out! And the really brave will take a small boat and float down the Birs, a small side river to the Rhine.Where would you advise your visitors to go shopping?Set & Sekt, OOID, LOKAL, but also what’s called the Quartierflohmarkte (the flea markets around different neighborhoods in town, where everyone can just sell their secondhand things in front of their door). And I do recommend to checkhttp://wiewaersmalmit.ch/ which is a great initiative by two young ladies, Ana and Derya, who publish portraits of shop owners and cultural producers of Basel on a weekly basis.Where would you go in Basel to quietly catch up on a book or to catch up with a friend?The Museum Tinguely’s Solitude Park is underrated, it’s a beautiful and quiet spot in the shade of Switzerland’s tallest building.Which is your favorite bookstore in Basel?The Bucher-Broky, a second-hand shop that only sells books, located in an industrial hall in the Gundeli district, is a fun place to browse around some books while listening to the classical music that is being played in the background.Any hidden surprises about Basel that are not easy to find in travel guidebooks?I was told a small basilisk (a legendary reptile reputed to be a serpent king) lives in the botanical garden’s tropical house.http://www.blouinartinfo.comFounder: Louise Blouin p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 17.0px Georgia; color: #d81e00} p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 32.0px Arial; color: #232323} span.s1 {text-decoration: underline ; font-kerning: none} span.s2 {font-kerning: none} p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 18.0px Times}

Mita Kapur on Finding Oneself in Bhutan

With temperatures in the Indian subcontinent soaring to 45 degrees Celsius these days (upwards of 110 Fahrenheit), it’s not a surprise that the Himalayas are a favorite getaway in this part of the world this time of the year. The long arc of the Himalayas
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Mita Kapur on Finding Oneself in Bhutan

With temperatures in the Indian subcontinent soaring to 45 degrees Celsius these days (upwards of 110 Fahrenheit), it’s not a surprise that the Himalayas are a favorite getaway in this part of the world this time of the year. The long arc of the Himalayas — from Pakistan in the west to the Myanmar-China border in the east crowning the north of India all along, and spanning 2,400 km or 1,500 miles — is dotted with many options to escape to from the sub-continental heat. Among all these destinations, the kingdom of Bhutan holds a special place for those who love the mountains. It’s by far the most exotic of all Himalayan destinations. And given the fewer number of tourists going to Bhutan compared with other places such as Nepal or numerous hill stations in the Indian states of Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, West Bengal and Sikkim, that can get chock-a-block during summer, Bhutan offers an unparalleled experience.On the Indian side of the Himalayas, not many know Bhutan as well as Mita Kapur. The founder and chief executive of the Indian literary agency, Jaipur-based Siyahi, Kapur has been producing the much-loved “Mountain Echoes” festival in Bhutan for the past eight years. Held every August, it is a festival of literature, art and culture. The congregation of creative individuals in the magical setting in the lap of the Himalayas makes it a festival unlike many others. Even though the ninth edition of “Mountain Echoes” is two months away, BLOUIN ARTINFO spoke to Kapur to make the best of the cool climes of Bhutan this sweltering season.What is it about Bhutan that led to the creation of Mountain Echoes literature festival in the Himalayan Kingdom?Her Majesty the Royal Queen Mother Ashi Dorji Wangmo Wangchuck, our Royal Patron, is a prolific writer and it was during the tenure of former ambassador of India to Bhutan, Pavan Varma, that this festival was conceived of along with author Namita Gokhale. Siyahi was given the responsibility of producing the festival in 2010. With eight editions of the Mountain Echoes literature festival behind you, Bhutan must be like second home to you. What do you like best about Bhutan? Yes, I love Bhutan and its people. I have so many friends there. I start getting withdrawal pangs if a few months pass without my going there to work. I have learnt a lot and my life has been enriched by Bhutan as a country — its calm, its rootedness, and the pride that each Bhutanese has for the country’s culture and traditions, are somethings I admire and respect.Mountain Echoes has in its own ways impacted Bhutan — there are book clubs in every school now. Book readings, launches, author interactions are frequent now. When the festival began in 2010, nothing of this sort used to happen in Bhutan. Publishing has gone up by more than 40 percent. The number of writers has grown many many times more than the first few well-known writers way back. Some of them have also got published in India and Europe. The Writers Association of Bhutan is doing some admirable work to give debut authors a publishing platform. It’s simply amazing.  What are your favourite places in Thimphu that you would recommend to visitors?All of Thimphu! From the majestic Tashicho Dzong to Changhanka monastery to Dechen Phu, Dechen Phodrong, Tara monastery, Buddha Point, the Clock Tower, Vast Gallery, Terton Gallery, Mojo Park, and so many other nooks and corners like the Junction bookstore, DSB Books — I’m just naming a few. I love going for a run by the river. The weekend farmers market and craft bazaar are worth a visit. One must also visit the painting school — the National Institute for Zorig Chusum.Could you suggest some restaurants in Thimphu to try out local cuisine and other international fare? The Zone, Folk Heritage Museum, Zasa, Cloud Nine, Hotel Druk, Zombala. Madam Yuki’s cafe rustles up dreamy cakes! The local breweries make their own beer — don’t miss the stout, red rice lager, and pale ale — it’s something to die for. They have Zumzin — their own wine, which is lovely. K5, the Bhutanese whiskey, is a smooth drink as well.  Any local dish that you would recommend visitors must try out while in Thimphu?I love Bhutanese food. Pork chilly with Ema Datshi and red rice, wild fern, beef ribs, Bhutanese buckwheat noodles, Ezzay, momos, Hogay, mushroom Datshi and a whole plethora of dishes.  What are the places in Bhutan outside of Thimphu that one must visit for a complete experience of the kingdom?One must visit the Tango-Cheri monastery [about 14 kms north of Thimphu], Dochula pass [on the road from Thimphu to Punakha], Tiger’s nest monastery in Paro [about 50 kms from Thimphu], the Paro Dzong [a Buddhist monastery and fortress in Paro district], Punakha and Bumthang, and the Haa district. Where would you advise visitors to go shopping?Shop at OGOP - its the best! Besides, the main streets in Thimphu and Paro offer a great shopping experience. There is a whole handicraft market behind the Taj Tashi as well in Thimpu. The capital city also has small boutiques by local designers such as Chandrika (CDK) and Chimmi (House of Design) who are simply fantastic.   Any local artifact/ handicraft/ textile, that one mustn’t leave without buying in Bhutan? Bhutan has a burst of colours and a riot of creativity to choose from — their Kira and Goh fabrics, silver and a whole load of other handicraft are available. Also worth a buy are their traditional mugs in which they serve Ara etc, and Budhist Thangkas.  What’s your favourite Bhutan memory from all the years that you have been going there for the Mountain Echoes festival (and even otherwise)?I have too many memories — I could write a book. My family tells me to go to Bhutan to calm down when I start getting too crabby. Any unusual aspect of Bhutanese climate that you would want visitors to be aware of?Always have a jacket and an umbrella handy, as also sensible walking shoes. Any hidden surprises about Bhutan that are not easy to find in travel guidebooks?Its a land full of mysteries — walk around and find out!www.blouinartinfo.comFounder: Louise Blouin p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 32.0px Arial; color: #232323} span.s1 {font-kerning: none} p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 18.0px Times} span.s1 {font-kerning: none}

The Best of Basel with Samuel Leuenberger

SAMUEL LEUENBERGER is an independent curator based in Basel — which also happens to be the city he was born and raised in. In addition to running SALTS, a not-for-profit venue that promotes young Swiss artists in Birsfelden, Switzerland, he has worked as cu
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The Best of Basel with Samuel Leuenberger

SAMUEL LEUENBERGER is an independent curator based in Basel — which also happens to be the city he was born and raised in. In addition to running SALTS, a not-for-profit venue that promotes young Swiss artists in Birsfelden, Switzerland, he has worked as curator for the interdisciplinary festival “Les Urbaines” in Lausanne as well as for “14 Rooms,” a live art exhibition coordinated by Fondation Beyeler, Art Basel and Theater Basel. He has also worked at Stephen Friedman Gallery and the Kunsthalle Zurich.While Art Basel shows are presented across 27,500 square meters of exhibition space in two gigantic halls, the Parcours sector takes place in the city itself, in the historic old town. Parcours showcases site-specific artistic interventions that are open to the public, free of charge. This programming has, since 2016, been overseen by Leuenberger. His first year, he presented 19 artistic projects across the Munsterplatz area, adjacent to the Basel Cathedral, including works by Ilya and Emilia Kabakov, Jim Dine and Alfredo Jaar; last year, he oversaw the installation of projects by Wu Tsang, Amanda Ross-Ho, and Shana Moulton.As a native son and expert at weaving art into Basel’s urban topography, he’s a well-informed source for tips about how to enjoy the city — ranging from where to get the perfect cup of coffee to the best spots for Thai food to a discrete accommodation nestle amid sylvan greenery.How long have you been living in Basel?I am a Basel native, but I left Switzerland to study abroad when I was 16 and then moved to Zurich when I was 27. Now I am back in Basel and have been living here for exactly 10 years.What are your “can’t leave without seeing this” recommendations in the city?Walking over the various bridges of the city and enjoying the picturesque view, the silhouette of the city against the sunset.Do you have a favorite architectural “must”?Renzo Piano’s Fondation Beyeler is still one of the most beautiful museum spaces in the city. Other must-visit places are Zaha Hadid’s Vitra Fire Station across the border in Germany (one of the architect’s first projects to be realized) and the Goteanum in Dornach — the tallest building in Switzerland. These may all seem like obvious choices, but they reiterate Basel as an architectural stronghold.What is the most overrated thing people advise visitors to check out when they’re in town?The Rhine river running through Basel.What restaurants or cafes would you recommend, and why are they unique?I’d recommend getting coffee at Klara Bar or unternehmen mitte.If you want to posh it up, I recommend Les Trois Rois, where you can get delicious cookies and assortments with your coffee. If you are on a tight budget, try Cafe Flore — you get coffee and a Basler Lackerli [a traditional hard spice biscuit made of honey, hazelnuts, almonds, candied peel, and Kirsch] for only 3.50 Swiss francs (or about $3.50). If you are in the mood for thrift store shopping, go to Irma & Fred — if you buy something for over 5 francs, they will offer you a cup of good Italian coffee.In terms of restaurants, I like to stick to the classics like Restaurant Kunsthalle, Zum Goldenen Fass, La Fourchette, or Chez Donati. Or try one of the yummy Thai restaurants such as Chanthaburi, Nordbahnhof, Bo Thai, or Thai Family Restaurant.How would you spend a free morning or afternoon in Basel?I would drive with my motorcycle down to the industrial harbor, Landesstelle, a large area where lots of pop-up bars and restaurants have opened outside the city’s streamlined shops.What would you buy that feels like a “local” item?Basler Lackerlis, flammkuchen [a savory rolled out flat bread baked with fromage blanc or creme fraiche, thinly sliced onions and bacon — some call it Germanic pizza], and Schwimmfisch [a floating bag to put your clothes in when you drift down the river].Where would you recommend people stay when they visit? (i.e. favorite neighborhood, and/or favorite specific hotel/s?)Hotel Krafft Basel still remains the classic destination, with the view of the Rhine. My absolute favorite “secret” place to get a cozy and nice room is the youth hostel next to Museum fur Gegenwart. It’s on a small creek, halfway inside a small forest. It was redesigned a few years back, and so it looks more like a design hotel than you would think.What are the best venues to check out the city’s art offerings?Kunstmuseum Basel, Kunsthalle Basel, Schaulager, Fondation Beyeler, Haus der elektronischen Kunste (HeK), Museum Tinguely, Kunsthaus Baselland, der TANK...the list is endless.What are the ideal spots to see live music?Kaserne Basel, Hirschi, Holzpark, and Kaschemme.What are your favorite bars to relax in after spending the day at the fair?The Three Kings Bar, Consum, Kabar, and Marina Bar on the harbor.What are you most excited about for this edition of the fair?Needless to say, Parcours is one of the most exciting ways to discover art in the city. Unlimited and Statements of course remain must-sees, and I’m also excited to visit LISTE, which takes place concurrent to Art Basel.http://www.blouinartinfo.comFounder: Louise Blouin p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 17.0px Georgia; color: #d81e00} span.s1 {text-decoration: underline ; font-kerning: none} p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 32.0px Arial; color: #232323} span.s1 {font-kerning: none} p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 18.0px Times}

Ondřej Krynek of Prague Design Week on the Best of Czech Republic’s Capital

Ondřej Krynek, the curator and founder of Prague Design Week, shares his favorite places in the Czech Republic’s hip and historic capitalHow long have you been living in Prague?  I’ve been here over 20 years.What are your “can’t leave without se
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Ondřej Krynek of Prague Design Week on the Best of Czech Republic’s Capital

Ondřej Krynek, the curator and founder of Prague Design Week, shares his favorite places in the Czech Republic’s hip and historic capitalHow long have you been living in Prague?  I’ve been here over 20 years.What are your “can’t leave without seeing this” recommendations? The statue of Franz Kafka, near Quadrio shopping center; the National Gallery; the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague.What is the most overrated thing people advise visitors to check out when they're in town?  Eating Trdelnik [a chimney cake made from rolled dough wrapped around a stick, then grilled and topped with sugar and walnut mix].What restaurants or cafes would you recommend? Špejle, which specializes in skewers, and the cafe Kavarna co hleda jmeno.Do you have a favorite signature Czech specialty? The vegetarian version of “svickova“ (roast sirloin in sour cream sauce with dumplings.)How would you spend a free morning or afternoon in Prague? I’d have breakfast in Cafe Savoy, and take a row boat out on the Vltava River, which has a beautiful view of the Prague Castle.Where would you head for the best shopping? Design Showroom J, which sells furniture, home accessories, and decorations.What would you buy that feels like a “local” item? A “Republic” porcelain tray or bowl by Czech designer Maxim Velcovský. Or Czech beer, of course.Where would you recommend people stay when they visit?  I’d recommend Hotel Josef, in the Old Town, or somewhere in the Podbaba area.What are the best venues to check out the city's art and design offerings? I’d say DOX Centre for Contemporary Art, and the National Gallery.What are the best places to buy art or design pieces? Debut Gallery, and Male namesti.What are the ideal spots to see live music? The Roxy club, and the cultural space Palac Akropolis.What are your favorite bars to relax in after spending the day at the fair?  The Cuban bar La Casa Havana.Is there a designer you’d recommend — Czech or otherwise — who really captures the spirit of the city through their work?  I’d say the designer Klara Šipkova, specifically with her collection of steel pieces called Citynet.  p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 18.0px Times} p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 18.0px Times; min-height: 23.0px} span.s1 {font-kerning: none}

The Best of Berlin With Miss Read Director Michalis Pichler

Founded in 2009, MISS READ, the Berlin Art Book Fair,  is dedicated to, according to Director Michalis Pichler, “creating a public meeting place for discourse around artists’ books, conceptual publications and publishing as practice… It is imp
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The Best of Berlin With Miss Read Director Michalis Pichler

Founded in 2009, MISS READ, the Berlin Art Book Fair,  is dedicated to, according to Director Michalis Pichler, “creating a public meeting place for discourse around artists’ books, conceptual publications and publishing as practice… It is important to gather in an actual place and to exchange.” Featuring a selection of more than 250 international publishers, art periodicals, artists and authors, the festival, fair, and overall forum for literary dialogue also encompasses a series of lectures, discussions, book launches and workshops. Its mission of exploring the shifting parameters of contemporary publishing, and the ever-porous possibilities of the book, is at once evergreen and incredibly topical. In tandem is the annual Conceptual Poetics Day, which explores the overlap between visual art and literature.The MISS READ fair is open May 4-6 at Haus der Kulturen der Welt John-Foster- Dulles-Allee. As you might expect from someone who spearheaded such an intrepid conceptual event, Pichler’s recommendations of what to see and do in Berlin are cheeky and but telling. How long have you been living in Berlin?I was born here, or in what was then West Berlin.What are your recommendations for must-see places in Berlin?Berlin has great museums, especially the Pergamonmuseum on Museumsinsel. Despite the fact that almost everything in this museum has been stolen, it’s a great place to visit. I love how the S-Bahn tracks are almost going through the building. It reminds me of a scene in “Berlin – Die Sinfonie der Großstadt” by Walther Ruttmann.Where would you head to in Berlin for the best shopping?I would visit the flea markets — you can only do that on the weekends, though.What are the best places to see live bands or musicians in Berlin and why?I like Schwarze Heidi on Mariannenstraße on Sunday nights. There is this group of musicians, drinkers, potheads and Hartz-Vier- artists — I’ve heard one of them is actually an in-debt millionaire — who get together and play Rembetiko every Sunday. Starts around midnight.Which local restaurants or cafes would you recommend?I like restaurants that serve tap-water — I definitely do recommend Berlin’s tap-water! And cafes which have a nice variety of daily newspapers. (Like Bar Vereinszimmer Lo Spazio next to Viktoriapark.) Recently, many cafes have stopped bringing in daily newspapers and have weekly magazines instead, but I hate that. I mean, sorry, that’s not a coffee-house then, but more like a doctor’s waiting room.Where would you recommend people stay (hotels, B&Bs) when they visit Berlin?It doesn’t really matter where. Try to respect the locals.What are some of Berlin’s best secret places that everyone should discover?That’s a difficult one, hmmm... Can’t help but think of a dialogue in an old detective movie I once saw: “Can you keep a secret?” – “Yes!” – “Me too.”What are the best places to buy art in Berlin?It really depends on your interests and budget. Naturally I would say at MISS READ this weekend, where we promote the understanding of (certain) publications as artworks in their own right.What projects are you currently working on?We are already working on MISS READ 2019, taking place next May 3-5 at Haus der Kulturen der Welt. Besides that, I am working on a German adaptation of  “Exposition litteraire autour de Mallarme.” The exhibition is centered around re-readings and re-writings of “Un Coup de Des Jamais N’Abolira Le Hasard” across different media, reproducing that icon of the avant-garde.What are you most looking forward to about this newest edition?The fair is celebrating the 10th  year of its existence by bringing together 267 exhibitors and publishing an anthology called “Publishing Manifestos” (which follows a 2015 artists/book monograph with Printed Matter). The book also features a comprehensive who’s-who of publishers within the last decade who participated in MISS READ, with 600 separate entries. Some of the chosen artists for this specific edition: Simon Morris will examine the history of self-publishing and look forward to the political praxis of the 21st-century’s digital future. Annette Gilbert will examine the possibility of immaterial literature in conceptual writing. Karl Holmqvist will read “You Blew up my House,” a spoken word event that mixes pop culture with song lyrics and political slogans.http://www.blouinartinfo.comFounder: Louise Blouin p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 17.0px Georgia; color: #d81e00} p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 32.0px Arial; color: #232323} span.s1 {text-decoration: underline ; font-kerning: none} span.s2 {font-kerning: none} p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 18.0px Times}

Frieze’s Loring Randolph on the Best of New York

Frieze Art Fairs named Loring Randolph — previously partner and director at New York’s Casey Kaplan gallery — its new artistic director of the Americas in autumn 2017. Having hitherto participated as an exhibitor, Randolph now determines the strategic g
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Frieze’s Loring Randolph on the Best of New York

Frieze Art Fairs named Loring Randolph — previously partner and director at New York’s Casey Kaplan gallery — its new artistic director of the Americas in autumn 2017. Having hitherto participated as an exhibitor, Randolph now determines the strategic goals and content of Frieze New York, which swiftly attracted international artists, galleries, curators, and collectors since crossing the Atlantic as an offshoot of the London original in Regent’s Park. (A Los Angeles edition has, moreover, been announced for 2019.)Under Randolph’s direction, this seventh edition features programs showcasing performances (notably Adrienne Edwards’s new “Live” program, themed around protest marches), a Talks program drawing upon contemporary literature (with appearances by Elif Batuman and Ottessa Moshfegh), and an architectural makeover by Universal Design Studio at the fair’s hub, Randall’s Island Park. Running May 4-6, Frieze will feature just under 200 galleries from 30 countries, with participation from first-timers as far-flung as Budapest, Tehran, and Tokyo.In a conversation with BLOUIN ARTINFO, Randolph revealed her New York preferences: her go-to Brooklyn boutique, where she heads for a date night, and the import of the Lower East Side gallery scene.How long have you been a New Yorker?Twelve years.What are your “can’t leave without seeing this” recommendations for the city?I’d say the 9/11 Memorial, the Morgan Library, the New York Public Library at Bryant Park, the Met and Central Park, and the High Line.What is the most overrated thing people advise visitors to check out?There is not much that is overrated about this great city! I am not even jaded about the Empire State Building. That said, I loathe Times Square…What restaurants and/or cafes would you recommend, and what makes them unique?Our restaurants at the fair this year — Foul Witch by Blanca and Roberta’s, Fat Radish and Frankies Spuntino — are all fantastic, and I also love abcV and Andrew Tarlow’s restaurants. Roman’s in Fort Greene is my go-to neighborhood place and my new favorite lunch spot near our Frieze New York offices in Soho is Le Botaniste, which serves exquisite, plant-based food that keeps my energy up all day long. I went recently to Frenchette, which is a great date night spot, my husband and I sat near Mario Batali — always a good sign when another chef is eating there too!What would you do if you had a free morning or afternoon to wander the city?I’d wander through Chinatown and the Lower East Side. This is a vibrant part of the city because of the young gallery scene and the sheer chaos of the street vendors. There’s a famous pharmacy near our office, Kamwo Meridian Herbs, that works miracles. After popping in there, I would walk home to Fort Greene over the Brooklyn Bridge.Where would you head for the best shopping, and what would you buy?My favorite store to visit is Bird. The selection is young and on trend, and speaks to my tastes and price range. Lucky for me, one just opened in Fort Greene. Rachel Comey is my go-to brand, and am also a fan of Catherine Micoli bags: they are for the working woman and are belted and hands-free! I tend mostly to buy clothes online though, and frequent Bergdorf’s site, and Net-A-Porter too.Where would you recommend people stay when they visit?Brooklyn isn’t always the first choice for visitors, but I like the Wythe Hotel in Williamsburg. If you want to be near Chelsea, you can’t go wrong with the Maritime, Hotel Americano or the Standard. The Mark and Surrey are high-end options on the Upper East Side that are so convenient to the fair on Randall’s Island.What are the best venues for seeing art in New York?The Whitney Museum is a wonderful space, with views of the water, and there are always a wide range of exhibitions there that you can see in one visit. I also like the Rubin Museum for a more intimate and relaxed experience. What are the best places to buy art in New York?Any of the incredible New York galleries, but especially the younger ones on the Lower East Side where you can truly make discoveries; they are good places to begin as a collector. I really don’t have a favorite! I always try to remind people that you can start a collection with editions and drawings, and that anything you see in a museum show that says “Courtesy of the Gallery” might be for sale. Don’t be afraid to inquire.What are the ideal spots to see live music?As it gets closer to the summer, I really like to be outside to see music. There is a little barge anchored at Brooklyn Bridge Park, and it is so beautiful and always filled with live music and so many different people. I love it! The Prospect Park Bandshell is also a great venue for shows in the summer.What are your favorite bars to relax in after spending the day at the fair?The bars at Frieze New York, which are on outdoor decks facing the river where you can sip champagne and watch the sun set behind the city, are the obvious choice.What are you most looking forward to about this edition of Frieze New York?The fair looks so incredible this year! I am answering these questions sitting in the grass on Randall’s Island staring at our new tents. I was looking forward to this moment when I arrived for the first time, and my jaw dropped. I could not have anticipated how great everything would look. I am so proud of our teams — it’s moving to finally see everyone’s hard work coming together.http://www.blouinartinfo.comFounder: Louise Blouin p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 17.0px Georgia; color: #d81e00} p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 32.0px Arial; color: #232323} span.s1 {text-decoration: underline ; font-kerning: none} span.s2 {font-kerning: none} p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 18.0px Times}

TEFAF New York’s Michael Plummer on His Top Picks of the City

This year’s TEFAF New York Spring brings together 90 of the world’s top dealers in Modern and Contemporary art and design, with 24 new participants. Among them are names like Gagosian, Hauser & Wirth, Marian Goodman Gallery, Levy Gorvy and White Cube
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TEFAF New York’s Michael Plummer on His Top Picks of the City

This year’s TEFAF New York Spring brings together 90 of the world’s top dealers in Modern and Contemporary art and design, with 24 new participants. Among them are names like Gagosian, Hauser & Wirth, Marian Goodman Gallery, Levy Gorvy and White Cube. The fair draws thousands of collectors, who benefit from the setting in one of the world’s most appealing cities, and on top of it, during the flowering of spring.Longtime New Yorker Michael Plummer, co-managing director of TEFAF New York, shares some of his favorite places to enjoy all that the city has to offer.What are you most looking forward to about this edition of TEFAF New York Spring?Having such a such a high concentration of exceptional International dealers in a Fair at the Park Avenue Armory — it will be an unprecedented art event in New York.How long have you been a New Yorker?I moved to New York nearly 40 years ago, and have never wanted to live anywhere else. It was our passion to contribute to the cultural landscape of this great city that motivated Jeff Rabin and me to create the Joint Venture Partnership that brought the TEFAF Fair experience to New York.What are your “can’t leave here without seeing this” recommendations for the city?The Cloisters, Bethesda Fountain, the High Line and the new Whitney, Governor’s Island, The Met and MoMA and most definitely the 9-11 Memorial.What is the most overrated thing people advise visitors to check out in New York?Strawberry Fields in Central Park.What restaurants and/or cafes would you recommend, and what makes them unique?Sant Ambroeus on Madison if you want to imagine you are in Rome for lunch, Cafe Luxembourg if you want to be in Paris, or the Manhattan Cricket Club if you are looking for a speakeasy merged with a colonial gentlemen’s club. At the other end of the spectrum, Houston Hall, a massive beer hall in the West Village.What would you do if you had a free morning or afternoon in New York?Weather permitting, bike along the Westside Highway down to the Battery, or on the loop around Central Park.Where would you head for the best shopping, and what would you buy?Soho — a leather jacket from John Varvatos…Where would you recommend people stay when they visit? (i.e. favorite neighborhood, and/or favorite specific hotel/s?)Depending upon the age of the visitor, if they were younger and looking for nightlife, I might suggest the Standard Hotel in the Meatpacking district. If one were looking for luxury and quiet, I would recommend the Plaza or the Carlyle.What are the best venues for seeing art in New York?Drop into the Frick or the Neue Galerie, two of the most intimate settings in the world for viewing great masterworks.What are the best places to buy art in New York?TEFAF New York Spring and TEFAF New York Fall!What are the ideal spots to see live music?Carnegie Hall — the cheapest seats in the balcony have the best acoustics of any venue in the city.What are your favorite bars to relax in after spending the day at the fair?Donohue’s — an unpretentious Irish pub that is a long-standing art-world-insider hangout with surprisingly good food just down Lexington Avenue from the Armory.http://www.blouinartinfo.comFounder: Louise Blouin p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 17.0px Georgia; color: #d81e00} p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 32.0px Arial; color: #232323} span.s1 {text-decoration: underline ; font-kerning: none} span.s2 {font-kerning: none} p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 18.0px Times}

Anne Vierstraete of Art Brussels on the City's Must Visits

Art Brussels has a major birthday this year. For its 50th edition, April 19-22, it will champion Belgian galleries (46 altogether, or 32 percent of the 2018 participants) while still bringing together 100 international galleries from 32 countries.The fair is
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Anne Vierstraete of Art Brussels on the City's Must Visits

Art Brussels has a major birthday this year. For its 50th edition, April 19-22, it will champion Belgian galleries (46 altogether, or 32 percent of the 2018 participants) while still bringing together 100 international galleries from 32 countries.The fair is divided into three sections: “Discovery” features work created by emerging artists during the past three years; “Prime” presents  internationally-recognized artists, and Solo puts the spotlight on three artists with solo presentation (Alex Chaves, Daniel Firman and Marlon Mullen). There’s a commissioned film by Philippine Hoegen to celebrate the fair’s half-century mark: “Crossed Wires” examines the Brussels art scene and its intrinsic relationship to the city at large over the past five decades.Anne Vierstraete, managing director of Art Brussels and a longtime resident of the city, spoke to BLOUIN ARTINFO about how visitors might best enjoy the city during their time at the fair. She spoke of her favorite places to purchase vintage jewelry as well as the best venues to admire local Art Deco flourishes.How long have you been living in Brussels?Since the age of 14. Before that I lived in Vienna, Austria. What are your “can’t leave without seeing this” recommendations for the city?Don’t miss the memorable Grand Place, a Unesco World Heritage site and an incomparable jewel in the heart of the city.What is the most overrated thing people advise visitors to check out when they are in town?Probably the landmark bronze sculpture called “Manneken Pis.” On the other hand, it remains the emblem of the city’s rebellious spirit, and gives a good sense of the Belgian humor… Brussels marries deeply anchored traditions and a resolutely contemporary drive.What restaurants would you recommend, and what makes them unique?Brussels is famous for great Belgian beers, fries, delicious artisanal chocolates… There are a lot of gastronomic starred restaurants, yet also very nice brasseries to eat simply but well.Sticking to typical Belgian/French cuisine in the heart of the city, one of the oldest (although not the most trendy) restaurants is Comme chez Soi. A legendary institution run by the same family for four generations, with two Michelin stars, and a very friendly and informal atmosphere. The Art Deco setting is unchanged since 1936. An absolute must.In a more accessible price category, my latest find is Sanzaru, which offers fantastic Nikkei cuisine, using Peruvian products alongside Japanese culinary techniques. The team works closely with chef Lucas Felzine of Uma, a Parisian restaurant; he was the first to introduce the Nikkei cuisine in France.What would you do if you had a free morning or afternoon in Brussels?I would certainly pay a visit to the daily flea market at Place du Jeu de Balles. The Spanish artist Oriol Vilanova decided to move to Brussels simply for the flea market, where he finds postcards that serve his artistic oeuvre.Where would you head for the best shopping?One of my preferred shops is “Excelsior – Ciel mes Bijoux,” close to the atmospheric Sablon square. It’s a small concept store with a lot of accessories, artist jewelry (Hervé Van der Straeten, Uli Rapp, Cilea, Satellite), a unique selection of Belgian fashion (De Clercq & De Clercq), plus timeless knitwear by Belgian designer Isabelle Baynes. The family runs two other shops next to the concept store: one selling haute couture vintage jewelry, the other vintage bags by iconic brands. The condition is impeccable, and their authenticity is certified.Where would you recommend people stay when they visit?The hotel Made in Louise, close to a number of Contemporary art galleries, is where you can experience the charm of living in a typical 20th-century Brussels townhouse.Quartier Brugmann is one of the most exclusive neighborhoods in Brussels; the place to stay there is Maison De Gend, a guesthouse offering several rooms and apartments.What are the best venues to check out the city’s art offerings?The first would be WIELS, for Contemporary art addicts! It is an outstanding Contemporary art center located in a former brewery. Then Bozar Center for Fine Arts, which is not to be missed: a hub in an Art Deco masterpiece by Victor Horta, where there are international exhibitions, classical and Contemporary concerts, theater, film, and conferences.What are the best places to buy art?Brussels offers a huge variety of Contemporary art galleries. A lot of them are concentrated in specific areas within the city, which makes it easy to visit several of them at once.The most established include Xavier Hufkens, Greta Meert, dépendance, Almine Rech, Nathalie Obadia, Templon, Albert Baronian, Office Baroque, OV Project, Sorry We’re Closed, Rodolphe Janssen, Maruani Mercier, Meessen De Clercq, Patinoire Royale…The emerging galleries include Stems, Harlan Levey Projects, Levy.Delval, Waldburger Wouters, Felix Frachon, and others.What are the ideal spots to see live music?L’Archiduc is a mythical place for jazz, live music and cocktails in a beautiful Art Deco interior. Architects, intellectuals and artists gather there until late.What are your favorite bars to relax in after the fair?When the weather is nice and warm, there’s a very informal and young atmosphere at Place Flagey, around the Flagey Arts Center; or Bar du Marché until late in the night, and Café Belga.What are you most looking forward to about this newest edition of Art Brussels?I’m always excited to see what the galleries will come up with. Given the high level of competition, a lot of effort is made in order to stand out from the crowd; it’s always exciting to see the diversity in each booth.Discoveries are not always where you expect them to be but of course I’m very fond of our Discovery section. This year’s edition brings a lot of first-time participants including A.Gorgi (Sidi Bou Said), Bank (Shanghai), Braverman (Tel Aviv), and Öktem&Aykut (Istanbul).I’m very curious to see the booths of our newcomers, like Zeno X, Tommy Simoens and Tim Van Laere (Antwerp), Habana (Havana), Anne Mosseri Marlio (Basel), among many others.— Art Brussels runs through April 22http://www.blouinartinfo.com p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 17.0px Georgia; color: #d81e00} p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 32.0px Arial; color: #232323} span.s1 {text-decoration: underline ; font-kerning: none} span.s2 {font-kerning: none} Founder: Louise Blouin p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 18.0px Times}   

Queen Elizabeth 2: Dubai's First Floating Hotel Opens to Public

Britain’s famed Queen Elizabeth 2 cruise ship is finally open to the public as a floating luxury hotel moored off at Mina Rashid in Dubai.Queen Elizabeth 2 also known as QE2 was built by Cunard and put to sea in 1969. The ship has been named after the wife
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Queen Elizabeth 2: Dubai's First Floating Hotel Opens to Public

Britain’s famed Queen Elizabeth 2 cruise ship is finally open to the public as a floating luxury hotel moored off at Mina Rashid in Dubai.Queen Elizabeth 2 also known as QE2 was built by Cunard and put to sea in 1969. The ship has been named after the wife of King George VI, not the current British monarch, hence the number rather than the Roman numeral.The luxury ship traveled some six million miles in decades of service carrying 2.5 million passengers and crossed the Atlantic more than 800 times. Britain expropriated the ship as a troop carrier for the Falklands War against Argentina in 1982. In 1987 the ship won the Queen’s Award for Export Achievement. Cunard sold the QE2 to an arm of the state-run conglomerate Dubai World for 50 million pounds ($100 million) in 2007. In 2015, PCFC Hotels, the Dubai government’s Ports, Customs, and Free Zone Corp. took over the project and reinvented the legendary vessel as the latest must-see tourism destination, in a city renowned for its world-class attractions.The refurbished ship has retained the original porthole windows in the rooms, as well as the interior design features, including the period furniture, renowned paintings, and famous memorabilia. Some of the rooms have a balcony, allowing guests to enjoy views of the marina. Two of the rooms, said to be the “gem in the crown” of the vessel and named after the Queen’s mother and grandmother, offer a private veranda, conservatory, and dining room, aside from a luxurious bedroom. Adjacent to the hotel lobby is the QE2 Exhibition – an interactive museum providing insights into the QE2 from the 60’s when she was a pioneer in design, technology, and lifestyle — words often used to describe the city she resides in today. Around seven of the QE2’s 13 decks are under operation, with 224 cabins available. Prices range from $150 a night in the simplest berthing to $15,000 a night for the Queen Elizabeth and Queen Mary suites. A number of the restaurants have also kept the original names and retained the same décor as the vessel’s former years. The ship also features shops run by Dubai Duty Free, the government-run conglomerate that had $1.93 billion of sales in 2017, with 9.7 million cans of beer and 7.4 million bottles of liquor and wine sold. Even with the major restoration work already completed, the vessel’s features, facilities, and amenities will be unveiled to the public in various phases, with the soft opening slated this Wednesdy.The grand launch will take place in October 2018.For details, visit: https://www.qe2.com/ http://www.blouinartinfo.com/                                            Founder Louise Blouin

The Best of Cologne, As Seen By Fair Director, Daniel Hug

Art Cologne — the Rhineland’s long-standing trade fair for Modern and Contemporary art—boasts 210 galleries from 33 countries for this year’s edition, April 19-22. Launched in 1967 and officially deemed a trade fair since 1984, it was the first t
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The Best of Cologne, As Seen By Fair Director, Daniel Hug

Art Cologne — the Rhineland’s long-standing trade fair for Modern and Contemporary art—boasts 210 galleries from 33 countries for this year’s edition, April 19-22. Launched in 1967 and officially deemed a trade fair since 1984, it was the first to include performance art in its offerings; early on, it established a dedicated sector for young artists as well as for emerging galleries.Overseeing the continued success of the fair for the last decade is Swiss-American Daniel Hug (who just so happens to be the grandson of the famous Hungarian artist László Moholy-Nagy). Hug has previously worked as a curator, consultant, gallerist and selection committee member (notably for the Art Chicago International Art Fair). The polymath revealed his local picks in the German metropolis: his preferred heritage café, a thorough array of local galleries, and the bookshop where you can in fact meet the namesake publisher in person.How long have you been living in Cologne?It’s been 10 years now. The 53rd edition of Art Cologne this April will be my 10th fair in Cologne.What are your “can’t leave without seeing this” recommendations for the city?Of course, there is the Grand Cathedral, which is the hallmark of Cologne. From the top of the Gothic church, visitors have a great view.There are also lots of great art museums, such as the Museum Ludwig which is well known for its extraordinary exhibitions of Contemporary and Modern art. Also, the Kolumba Museum, of the Archdiocese of Cologne. It allows the visitor to experience two millennia of Western culture in a single building.  What is the most overrated thing people advise visitors to check out when they’re in town?The Kölscher Klüngel — Google it.What restaurants and/or cafes would you recommend, and what makes them unique?The most underrated cafe is Cafe Printen-Schmitz, in the center of town in the Breite strasse: great for people-watching. (I’m sitting there right now, and workers from the Buchholz gallery are at the table next to me.)A fantastic restaurant is Pure White in the Antwerpnerstrasse — the best steaks and seafood. In the Maastricher Strasse, a new organic market opened called Markt Halle. They have a great restaurant on the lower level, cooking with ingredients from the food sellers in the upper level. I had an amazing Bretonian fish soup there.What would you do if you had a free morning or afternoon in Cologne?I would go to the Museum Ludwig and get lost in their fantastic collection, or go to Walther König Books, where you can still meet Walther König.Where would you head for the best shopping?In the center of town, the Hohe Strasse, Breite Strasse and the Mittelstrasse have lots of stores. In the Belgian quarter, the Maastricher strasse has great hip restaurants and shops.Where would you recommend people stay when they visit? (i.e. favorite neighborhood, and/or favorite specific hotel/s?)The Excelsior Hotel Ernst is the best hotel and opposite of the Dom. The Qvest hideaway should definitely be cited — it’s a neo-Gothic building located at the center of Cologne, decorated with design icons of the 20th century. The Hotel Chelsea is also a nice place to stay; it was built in the ’80s and offers some great art. What are the best venues to check out the city's art offerings?The Cologne galleries publish a nice monthly gallery guide: www.koelngalerien.deWhat are the best places to buy art?From Michael Werner, Karsten Greve and Heinz Holtmann to important players in the Contemporary market like Daniel Buchholz, Gisela Capitain, Nagel Draxler, Delmes Zander and Thomas Zander.Great photography dealers are Priska Pasquer, Bene Taschen and Julian Sander.And there are great young galleries like Jan Kaps, Clages, Natalia Hug, Drei, Berthold Pott and Martinetz — as well as young international players such as Rob Tufnell from London who just opened a new space and Nino Mier from LA who will open his Salon Mier during Art Cologne. What are the ideal spots to see live music?I saw Franz Ferdinand a few weeks ago at the Palladium. What are your favorite bars to relax in after spending the day at the fair?The bar in the aforementioned Excelsior Hotel Ernst is a nice place to meet friends and enjoy a glass of bubbly.What are you most looking forward to about this newest edition of Art Cologne?We have never been so international, and visitors will see art from all over the world.We also commissioned the young artist Zuzanna Czebatul, who is doing a large-scale floor installation at the south entrance that will look fantastic. We also have some special exhibitions such as FILM COLOGNE, with video art of Southeast Asia, or ZADIK (Central Archive of the International Art Trade) presenting its “Kölnshow,” the art scene of the 1990s.— Art Cologne runs April 19-22http://www.blouinartinfo.comFounder: Louise Blouin

Discovering London with Michael Benson, co-founder, Photo London

Photo London was founded in 2015, swiftly drawing photographers, curators, dealers and the public together to celebrate the medium. The fourth edition of the fair features 108 exhibiting galleries from 18 countries, selected by a curatorial committee led by P
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Discovering London with Michael Benson, co-founder, Photo London

Photo London was founded in 2015, swiftly drawing photographers, curators, dealers and the public together to celebrate the medium. The fourth edition of the fair features 108 exhibiting galleries from 18 countries, selected by a curatorial committee led by Philippe Garner, who oversaw the first photography auction in the UK at Sotheby’s, in 1971.This year, the Discovery section has expanded to include 22 galleries, and the Talks program features speakers including Joel Meyerowitz, Bruce Gilden, An-My Lê, Thomas Struth and Vera Lutter. Edward Burtynsky—whose imagery explores how humans have profoundly influenced global landscapes, notably through his latest five-year project “Anthropocene”—has been selected as the 2018 Master of Photography. Headquartered at Somerset House, on the south side of the Strand, Photo London is on view May 17-20.MICHAEL BENSON, the founding director of the fair alongside Fariba Farshad, has had extensive career crossover between the realms of education and the arts, notably developing the London Institute Gallery’s exhibition program. He is the Director of Prix Pictet (the international photography prize founded in 2008), a board member for the Foundation for the Exhibition of Photography and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts. The London native discussed everything from his favorite barber to the best Chilean seafood to try while in town.How long have you been a Londoner?All my life.What are your “can’t leave without seeing this” recommendations for the city?The Thames—many of the City’s best secrets are hidden in plain sight along the banks of its great river. The parks are London’s green lungs. And of course, the city’s architectural and cultural splendors, from Westminster and St. Paul’s to the Tate Modern and even the Shard.What is the most overrated thing people advise visitors to check out?Almost all of the usual suspects especially Madame Tussauds and Piccadilly Circus.What restaurants and/or cafes would you recommend, and what makes them unique?Two of the city’s best restaurants—Spring and Bryn Williams—are at Somerset House: fine, imaginative cooking in a fabulous location. The Delaunay is theatre land’s Grand European-style brasserie and J Sheekey is one of the best fish restaurants in town. Further afield Chicama (Chilean seafood) and Medlar (Modern French), both in the Kings Road, are brilliantly idiosyncratic places to eat.  What would you do if you had a free morning or afternoon in London?Morning: a visit to one of the city’s many excellent Turkish barbers, followed by a stroll along the river and a walk in one of the great parks. Then books shopping in Tottenham Court Road or lunch in one of the lesser-known riverside pubs, such as the Dove at Hammersmith. Afternoon: a museum or gallery show (almost certainly photography) or a matinee at Regents Park Open Air Theatre in summer or at Sadler’s Wells. And, every other Saturday: Chelsea FC at Stamford Bridge.Where would you head for the best shopping, and what would you buy?Covent Garden for shoes at Oliver Sweeney, Borough Market for food and Kings Road in Chelsea for (almost) everything else. Where would you recommend people stay when they visit?Our partner hotel the Rosewood is one of London’s finest. What are the best venues to check out photography shows in the city?Many of London’s major museums now stage brilliant photography shows, as do the Photographers Gallery and the well-known specialist and Contemporary galleries.What are the best places to buy art?London has an amazing emerging gallery scene, where the many of tomorrow’s stars can be found. What are the ideal spots to see live music?Roundhouse, Jazz Café, O2 arena, Brixton Academy—but also check out Daylight Music at Islington’s Union Chapel. For great outdoor gigs in the summer, Somerset House’s summer season is hard to beat.What are your favorite bars to relax in after spending the day at the fair?At the Radio Bar at ME Hotel just across the road: you can look down on the Fair and out across the Thames to the rest of London.What are you most looking forward to about this newest edition of Photo London?The 2018 edition is set to be the biggest and we look forward to showcasing the very best of the past, present and future of photography. Our Master of Photography Edward Burtynsky, one of the great image makers of our times, leads a strong exhibition program that includes exhibitions of work by Darren Almond, the legacy of Henry Fox Talbot (featuring rare original works alongside those of Contemporary masters), and special installations by Daido Moriyama and acclaimed set designer Es Devlin.— Photo London runs May 17-20 at Somerset House, LondonFor details, visit http://photolondon.orghttp://www.blouinartinfo.comFounder: Louise Blouin p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 18.0px Times} p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 17.0px Georgia; color: #d81e00} p.p3 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 32.0px Arial; color: #232323} span.s1 {text-decoration: underline ; font-kerning: none} span.s2 {font-kerning: none}

Discovering London with Michael Benson, Founding Director, Photo London

Photo London was founded in 2015, swiftly drawing photographers, curators, dealers and the public together to celebrate the medium. The fourth edition of the fair features 108 exhibiting galleries from 18 countries, selected by a curatorial committee led by P
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Discovering London with Michael Benson, Founding Director, Photo London

Photo London was founded in 2015, swiftly drawing photographers, curators, dealers and the public together to celebrate the medium. The fourth edition of the fair features 108 exhibiting galleries from 18 countries, selected by a curatorial committee led by Philippe Garner, who oversaw the first photography auction in the UK at Sotheby’s, in 1971.This year, the Discovery section has expanded to include 22 galleries, and the Talks program features speakers including Joel Meyerowitz, Bruce Gilden, An-My Lê, Thomas Struth and Vera Lutter. Edward Burtynsky—whose imagery explores how humans have profoundly influenced global landscapes, notably through his latest five-year project “Anthropocene”—has been selected as the 2018 Master of Photography. Headquartered at Somerset House, on the south side of the Strand, Photo London is on view May 17-20.MICHAEL BENSON, the founding director of the fair alongside Fariba Farshad, has had extensive career crossover between the realms of education and the arts, notably developing the London Institute Gallery’s exhibition program. He is the Director of Prix Pictet (the international photography prize founded in 2008), a board member for the Foundation for the Exhibition of Photography and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts. The London native discussed everything from his favorite barber to the best Chilean seafood to try while in town.How long have you been a Londoner?All my life.What are your “can’t leave without seeing this” recommendations for the city?The Thames—many of the City’s best secrets are hidden in plain sight along the banks of its great river. The parks are London’s green lungs. And of course, the city’s architectural and cultural splendors, from Westminster and St. Paul’s to the Tate Modern and even the Shard.What is the most overrated thing people advise visitors to check out?Almost all of the usual suspects especially Madame Tussauds and Piccadilly Circus.What restaurants and/or cafes would you recommend, and what makes them unique?Two of the city’s best restaurants—Spring and Bryn Williams—are at Somerset House: fine, imaginative cooking in a fabulous location. The Delaunay is theatre land’s Grand European-style brasserie and J Sheekey is one of the best fish restaurants in town. Further afield Chicama (Chilean seafood) and Medlar (Modern French), both in the Kings Road, are brilliantly idiosyncratic places to eat.  What would you do if you had a free morning or afternoon in London?Morning: a visit to one of the city’s many excellent Turkish barbers, followed by a stroll along the river and a walk in one of the great parks. Then books shopping in Tottenham Court Road or lunch in one of the lesser-known riverside pubs, such as the Dove at Hammersmith. Afternoon: a museum or gallery show (almost certainly photography) or a matinee at Regents Park Open Air Theatre in summer or at Sadler’s Wells. And, every other Saturday: Chelsea FC at Stamford Bridge.Where would you head for the best shopping, and what would you buy?Covent Garden for shoes at Oliver Sweeney, Borough Market for food and Kings Road in Chelsea for (almost) everything else. Where would you recommend people stay when they visit?Our partner hotel the Rosewood is one of London’s finest. What are the best venues to check out photography shows in the city?Many of London’s major museums now stage brilliant photography shows, as do the Photographers Gallery and the well-known specialist and Contemporary galleries.What are the best places to buy art?London has an amazing emerging gallery scene, where the many of tomorrow’s stars can be found. What are the ideal spots to see live music?Roundhouse, Jazz Café, O2 arena, Brixton Academy—but also check out Daylight Music at Islington’s Union Chapel. For great outdoor gigs in the summer, Somerset House’s summer season is hard to beat.What are your favorite bars to relax in after spending the day at the fair?At the Radio Bar at ME Hotel just across the road: you can look down on the Fair and out across the Thames to the rest of London.What are you most looking forward to about this newest edition of Photo London?The 2018 edition is set to be the biggest and we look forward to showcasing the very best of the past, present and future of photography. Our Master of Photography Edward Burtynsky, one of the great image makers of our times, leads a strong exhibition program that includes exhibitions of work by Darren Almond, the legacy of Henry Fox Talbot (featuring rare original works alongside those of Contemporary masters), and special installations by Daido Moriyama and acclaimed set designer Es Devlin.— Photo London runs May 17-20 at Somerset House, LondonFor details, visit http://photolondon.orghttp://www.blouinartinfo.comFounder: Louise Blouin p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 18.0px Times} p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 17.0px Georgia; color: #d81e00} p.p3 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 32.0px Arial; color: #232323} span.s1 {text-decoration: underline ; font-kerning: none} span.s2 {font-kerning: none}

Top Attractions in New York by Gallerist Laurence Miller, Exhibiting at AIPAD

The 38th edition of AIPAD, one of the most notable annual international photography fairs, is currently running at Pier 94 in New York City April 5-8. More than 100 of the world’s leading photography —specialized galleries will present Contemporary, Moder
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Top Attractions in New York by Gallerist Laurence Miller, Exhibiting at AIPAD

The 38th edition of AIPAD, one of the most notable annual international photography fairs, is currently running at Pier 94 in New York City April 5-8. More than 100 of the world’s leading photography —specialized galleries will present Contemporary, Modern, and 19th-century images, as well as video and new media. Organized by the Association of International Photography Art Dealers (AIPAD), the 2018 fair has added more than 25 new participants and will feature galleries from nearly 15 countries throughout Europe, the UK, Asia, Canada, and South America. The programmed AIPAD Talks, which bring together prominent curators, collectors, and artists, features panel events with visionaries of the milieu, this year including Teju Cole, Susan Meiselas, and Edward Burtynsky.Laurence Miller, who will be in attendance at AIPAD, has presented over 250 exhibitions of Contemporary and vintage fine art photography at his eponymous space, with his roster spanning Ray K. Metzker to Toshio Shibata to Helen Levitt. A photography landmark since its opening in 1984, this year marked the gallery's 34th anniversary.BLOUIN ARTINFO spoke with Miller about his favorite restaurants and concert venues in New York, and a particular building with an especially provocative marquee.How long have you been a New Yorker?I moved to New York City in 1974, after graduate school, to work at Light Gallery on Madison Avenue.What are the best things to see and experience in New York?The High Line, especially at sunset. As you walk south below 20th Street, there is a wonderful casual outside bar with river views. Proceed down to the Whitney Museum for a dinner outside on the terrace.A boat ride is another great way to see the island: Circle Line, or sailboat ride...What is the most overrated thing people advise visitors to see in New York?The most overrated is Times Square — razzle dazzle, hucksters, tourists — I try to avoid it.  If you like to gawk, head over to Trump Tower.What restaurants and/or cafes would you recommend?Living in Greenwich Village, and with the gallery on West 26th Street, almost all our dining out is between home and work. Advice: find a restaurant that's busy but can seat you.  If you are staying uptown, two excellent restaurants are side by side, across from Carnegie Hall: Trattoria del Arte and Red Eye Grill.Knickerbockers, one block from Washington Square, has great steak and atmosphere. If you plan on spending time in Chelsea, which has the greatest concentration of art galleries in the world, ours included, I suggest lunch or dinner at The Red Cat, Bottino, or Pepe Giallo: all on Tenth Avenue near 23rd Street.What are the best venues for seeing art in New York?Of course, we have many world-class museums... Go as early as you can to avoid the crowds (especially MoMA), and see if your local museum membership is reciprocal.What would you do if you had a free morning or afternoon in New York?When I have free time and the weather is nice, I head over to Chelsea Piers and hit golf balls.What are the ideal places to see live music?For music lovers, there is of course Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center, but downtown is the place to head for jazz and blues. Check out the Village Vanguard, the Blue Note, and the truly intimate Smalls. For hardcore blues, got to Terra Blues on Bleecker Street.What are your favorite bars to relax in after spending the day at the art fair?The Upper West Side is rapidly being developed, and more and more restaurants are opening.  From Pier 94, walk east two blocks to Tenth Avenue: we had a very enjoyable Mediterranean meal at Taboon.What are you most looking forward to about AIPAD?One important theme we are exploring at AIPAD is immigration, featuring recent work by Erica Deeman, Rodrigo Valenzuela, Adal Maldonado.For me, one of the most enjoyable aspects of AIPAD is getting together with international colleagues and clients, whom we do not see often enough. It's also fascinating to see new and historic work from around the world — there are always new enterprising dealers making great discoveries.— Click on the slideshow for New York snapshotsFounder Louise Blouin: http://www.blouinartinfo.com/artists/louise-blouin--2953510

The Best of Paris During PAD, as Seen by Julien Lombrail of Carpenters Workshop Gallery

The 22nd edition of the Paris Art and Design fair, which showcases the 20th- and 21st-century luxury art-and-design wares of both French and international art dealers, takes place at a pop-up venue in the Tuileries Gardens, April 4-8. Since its foundation in
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The Best of Paris During PAD, as Seen by Julien Lombrail of Carpenters Workshop Gallery

The 22nd edition of the Paris Art and Design fair, which showcases the 20th- and 21st-century luxury art-and-design wares of both French and international art dealers, takes place at a pop-up venue in the Tuileries Gardens, April 4-8. Since its foundation in 1997 by Patrick Perrin (a Parisian art dealer with a long familial history in the trade), the fair has been bringing together design aficionados and decorative art collectors. This year’s edition will shine a special spotlight on primitive art.Among the list of PAD participants is Carpenters Workshop Gallery, founded by Julien Lombrail and Loic Le Gaillard, who champion “functional sculptures” and limited-edition works. Their roster of artists and designers includes Atelier van Lieshout, Maarten Baas, Rick Owens, Studio Drift, Humberto and Fernando Campana, Mathieu Lehanneur, Vincenzo De Cotiis, and Ingrid Donat (the latter just happens to be Lombrail’s mother). The duo launched their first space, tellingly housed in a former carpenter’s workshop, in London’s Chelsea neighborhood in 2006. The team opened a space in Paris in 2011, and more recently invested in an 8,000-square-meter atelier in a former foundry in Roissy (northeast of Paris, near the airport), acting as a research and development hub for artists, with an available stable of artisans.BLOUIN ARTINFO interviewed Carpenters Workshop Gallery co-founder Julien Lombrail, who spoke about his favorite locales throughout Paris, his love of the Marais and his skepticism of Montmartre.How long have you been a Parisien?I was raised in a suburb of Paris… I lived in London for five years, and I have now lived in Paris for seven years. I am a solid Parisian.What are your “can’t leave without seeing this” recommendations for Paris?Atelier Brancusi, the docks along the Seine facing the Notre Dame cathedral, and the Italian painting section of the Musée du Louvre.What is the most overrated thing people advise visitors to see here?Montmartre and its supposedly Parisian soul. Looks more like Disneyland to me nowadays.What restaurants and/or cafés would you recommend, and what makes them unique?Table, from chef Bruno Verjus. Bruno is a true artist. When he speaks about a truffle, scallops, even salt or pepper, you can see sparkles in his eyes.Le Derrière, an institution — and my living room, basically. Very special because it is family-driven; the best ambiance in Paris.I love the Marché des Enfants Rouges, where you can have the best crêpe ever at Chez Alain Miam Miam. It’s an institution in the neighborhood.What would you do if you had a free morning or afternoon in Paris?I’d have breakfast at the Café de Flore (still the best place where you can sit between Karl Lagerfeld and Japanese tourists). I’d go to a museum, like to see primitive art at Quai Branly. I’d go with my kids to the Académie de Magie, and then choose an art book at Ofr. bookstore. All this would be on foot, while looking at buildings, monuments, and hidden sculptures.Where would you head for the best shopping, and what would you buy?Rives for tailor-made clothes. The Rick Owens store — still trying to find something that I could actually wear — to buy their art de table pieces, which are like sculptures themselves.Where would you recommend people stay when they visit? i.e. favorite neighborhood, and/or favorite specific hotel?As a neighborhood, I really love Le Marais where I live, work, eat, and shop. Otherwise, Hôtel de Crillon, overseen by artistic director Aline D’Amman.What are the best venues for seeing art in Paris?Museums, museums, and museums.  Musée du Louvre, Musée d’Orsay, Jeu de Paume, Centre Pompidou, Quai Branly. The Fondation Louis Vuitton has some outstanding exhibitions.What are the best places to buy art?Gagosian, Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, Galerie Perrotin and Carpenters Workshop Gallery.What are the ideal places to see live music?Le Piaf, without a doubt. It’s the place to be in Paris. I love to eat there, in this early 20th-century brothel decor; it makes me feel like Toulouse Lautrec. There is an amazing piano player who makes everyone sing and dance at some point. Definitely a place to go for serious fun.What are your favorite bars to relax in after spending the day at the art fair?I love Le Progrès on rue de Bretagne. Very bobo; so Parisian.What are you looking forward to about PAD?To meet the best French interior designers.What projects are you currently working on?A secret place for collectors in New York.

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