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A day with… a Gallerist: Matthias Arndt


A day with… a Gallerist: Matthias Arndt

A day with… a Gallerist

Matthias Arndt

Founder, ARNDT Gallery

Berlin, Singapore

Established in 1994 as one of the first contemporary art galleries with an international profile in former East-Berlin, ARNDT expanded its operations to the vibrant art landscapes in Asia – particularly Southeast-Asia and the Pacific region. In its premises in Berlin and Asia’s new art hub Gillman Barracks in Singapore ARNDT presents its international and Asian programme with solo exhibitions and curated shows of established and emerging artists.

What is a typical day like at an art fair?

First thing in the morning; hotel gym to be fit for the day. Then breakfasts, brunches and morning visits at museums and collectors houses. During the art fair opening hours in the booth talking to professionals and new visitors and audience. Attending a talk “Art Basel Conversations” or meeting a client in the VIP lounge. From the fair, we visit gallery openings and other events. Maybe a light dinner and for the young colleagues they are off to a party. An art fair veteran like me, it’s back to the hotel, doing some emails and getting some rest.

What is the first thing you do when you enter the hall?

Walk to our booth, each time taking another path, in order to see things for myself and greet fellow gallerists.

Are art fairs important, and why?

Art Fairs are key in today’s art business, as you reach the largest possible local and international audience in a short period of time. Art fairs have become essential for the networking of the global art audience and we do a substantial amount of direct business on site, reaching out to new clients (who we keep in touch with and informed through the further gallery shows and meetings) and network amongst the galleries and museums.

Any particular artists or galleries you are looking forward to see?

Too many to name; we will be so busy taking care of our clients and the artists we work with, but I will make sure I visit the Hong Kong galleries and my fellow exhibitors in the fair.

What do you like or enjoy most about art fairs? 

Promoting and selling the artists we work with and the projects we have been preparing over the year and catching-up with the Asian and International arts scene, the collectors, curators and friends we are working with in the entire world. 

For first-time goers, what are your top 3 tips to enjoy an art fair?

1.Take a close look and follow your own eye and preferences. 
2. Then get the advice of the dealer, we are experts in what we are doing and are happy to share our expertise.
3. Visit the Galleries in their locations when you can and where you travel. As you get a calmer and more profound impression about a particular artists work and the dealer can take more time to introduce you to new work.

Any advice for new or budding art collectors?

Same as above. As I assume the visitors of an art fair have the intention to buy art, if at their first visit or at some point. Art fairs may be fun to visit but the full pleasure is enjoyed when one is buying, chasing, owning art.

Favourite bar or restaurant (in HK) after a long hard day of selling art?

Duddell’s, the Arts club and Restaurant.

Arndt Gallery is at Art Basel Hong Kong, 15 – 18 May 2014. 
Booth number 3C08



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