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After an intense week in Miami, SCOPE Miami wrapped up its 15th edition on Sunday, December 6. Whitewall caught up with returning participating gallerist Gregoire Vogelsang, of Belgian Vogelsang Gallery, to hear how this year’s fair went. His stand was one of SCOPE’s largest, showcasing works by artists like Terry Rodgers, Frank Stella, Tigran Tsitoghdzyan, Gregory Watin, Bernard Desjardins, Daniela Ribeiro, Alain Richard, among rising artists like Soraya Doolbaz, Nic Gaunt, Selvarosa, Julie Mimran, and Miami-based artist Rubem Robierb.
Vogelsang opened his 3,000 square foot gallery in Brussels in 2011 and within only a few years, his gallery has become a notable player in the art scene, participating in fairs around the world including Hong Kong, Istanbul, Dubai, Los Angeles, and Singapore. Vogelsang continues to host pop-up exhibitions in New York, bringing his international roster of artists to collectors abroad. He will debut a second space in Brussels in Place Brugmann neighborhood—the Brussels’ Upper East Side—early next year.
WHITEWALL: I know you participate in a good amount of fairs throughout the year, so why is it so important to show in Miami?
GREGOIRE VOGELSANG: Art Basel Miami Beach Week in Miami, with 22 art fairs taking place at the same time, brings together the largest concentration of art collectors, museum curators, gallerists, designers, and artists. Therefore, it is strategically necessary for our gallery to have a strong presence during this week. It is also an extraordinary opportunity to interact with new potential clients and all our current collectors anticipate to see us in Miami.
WW: What made you decide to participate again in SCOPE?
GV: Scope is one of the most popular satellite fairs during Art Basel, distinctive for its cutting edge contemporary artists. From one year to another we always bring a different selection in order to surprise our collectors. They are expecting us to search and find the most exciting new talent, and that’s why they keep coming back to the show.
WW: How was this year different from the previous years?
GV: The much bigger size of the fair, the quality of the works, and the interest of the collectors were really incredible this year. We decided to bring mostly large and impressive works, which could be a risk but it turned out to be the right decision. In fact, our artists’ work selection was the perfect fit for SCOPE. Artists like Rubem Robierb, Gregory Watin, and Tigran Tsitoghdzyan were completely sold out. The light boxes from Terry Rodgers got lots of attention. We were also very successful with Frank Stella and sold a couple of pieces.
WW: It seems like bringing work by Frank Stella is perfect timing too! Can you tell us about these works?
GV: We noticed early this year that the enthusiasm for Frank Stella has been incredible. With strong sales of his works during the Art Southampton fair and his retrospective at The Whitney going on now, we realized it was perfect timing to bring large, original Frank Stella works. We even received emails with people asking about our pieces before the fair started. What we showed were unique works in mixed media including collage, drawing, and painting, all on paper. They are part of his “Moby Dick” series made between 1985-89.
WW: Will you also bring the same roster of artists you show at SCOPE to your new gallery space in Brussels?
GV: Yes, our clients love the fact that we are able to introduce to them fresh, international artist work. Historically, Belgium has always been the home of a tremendous amount of art collectors, where artists could easily find support to develop their talents (like Magritte, Keith Haring, Niki de Saint Phalle, to name a few). There is definitely something exciting happening in the Brussels’ art scene within the past few years. With several international galleries and art fairs choosing Brussels to establish their European headquarters (Gladstone Gallery, Independent art fair, etc.) and the opening in April of a second Contemporary Art Museum, it is not surprising that The New York Times wrote an article last summer referring to the Brussels’ art scene as “the new Berlin.”
WW: What Art Fairs will you be doing next year ?
GV: We anticipate a very busy year ahead. In addition to opening our second gallery in Brussels, we will be participating in approximately 10 fairs next year in cities like New York, Hong Kong, Sao Paolo, the Hamptons, and, of course, Miami. We won’t wait for Art Basel Miami Beach 2016 to be back there, we will return to Miami in just two months for Art Wynwood, taking place in February during President’s Day weekend. And I can’t wait to be back!