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Art Basel cancels upcoming Hong Kong Show 2019 due to coronavirus outbreak
Hong Kong Architecture News - Feb 12, 2020 - 12:35 8541 views
The show has recently been amidst the discussions triggered by dealers and the participants of the event to cancel this year's show since it could create a concern for the health and safety problems among participants. Even a few dealers have already dropped out the event.
The organizers of the Art Basel have released a statement on February 6 and said the Art Basel has cancelled this year's upcoming Hong Kong Show which was previously scheduled to take place at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre (HKCEC) from March 19 to March 21, 2020.
The next edition of Art Basel in Hong Kong will take place from March 25 to March 27, 2021.
Besides the spread of the new coronavirus around the world, it is considered that rising cases of coronavirus in Hong Kong were the major concern in the cancellation of the show. According to the recent statistics, 49 cases have been confirmed for coronavirus in Hong Kong and 1 person died due to the outbreak. Reportedly, museums and schools have been closed.
Image © Art Basel
Health and safety of all those working at and attending the fair are the fundamental reason to cancel the show
The Art Basel stated that health and safety of all people working at and attending the fair are the fundamental reason to cancel the show. The disruption of international travels due to coronavirus was another factor to cancel the event, the organizers added.
"Following the severe outbreak of the novel coronavirus, which has recently been declared a global health emergency by the World Health Organization, Art Basel has no option but to cancel the upcoming edition of Art Basel Hong Kong," said The Art Basel.
"Numerous factors informed this decision, including: fundamental concern for the health and safety of all those working at and attending the fair; the severe logistical challenges facing the build-out and transit of artwork to the show; and the escalating difficulties complicating international travel, all arising as a result of the outbreak of the coronavirus."
Kukje Gallery, Massimo De Carlo and Perrotin. Elmgreen & Dragset. Image © Art Basel
The Art Basel Hong Kong tried to explore other possible options before cancelling the event
"Our thoughts are with those affected by the recent coronavirus outbreak around the world. The decision to cancel Art Basel Hong Kong was an extremely difficult one for us. We explored every other possible option before doing so, gathering advice and perspectives from many gallerists, collectors, partners and external experts," said Marc Spiegler, Global Director, Art Basel.
"We are acutely aware of the important role that the fair plays within the region's cultural scene and for our galleries, both in Asia and across the globe."
"Our team dedicated extensive time and effort to ensure our show in March would be a success over the course of the past year. Unfortunately, the sudden outbreak and rapid spread of the novel coronavirus radically changed the situation," added Spiegler.
"We are deeply grateful to our exhibitors, partners, and friends all over the world, and especially in Hong Kong, who have stood by our side, lent their support, and shared insights and opinions over the past days and months. Our commitment to Asia and Hong Kong has not changed, and we look forward to the 2021 edition," said Adeline Ooi, Director Asia, Art Basel.
neugerriemschneider. Simon Starling. Image © Art Basel
75% of the stand fee will be refunded to galleries
A spokesperson from the Art Basel told CNN Style that the show would be refunding galleries 75% of their stand fee. The Art Basel Hong Kong, is Asia's largest and attracted event, which brought together collectors from over 70 countries and territories, notably from Hong Kong, Mainland China, South Korea, Taiwan, and the United States last year. According to the Art Basel's report, it resulted in strong sales for galleries from all market sectors.
The show attracted 88,000 visitors last year. The 2020 edition was planning to stage 241 galleries from 31 countries.
Founded in 1970 by gallerists from Basel, Art Basel today stages the world's premier art shows for Modern and contemporary art, sited in Basel, Miami Beach, and Hong Kong.
Defined by its host city and region, each show is unique, which is reflected in its participating galleries, artworks presented, and the content of parallel programming produced in collaboration with local institutions for each edition.
kamel mennour. Latifa Echakhch. Image © Art Basel
Coronavirus is "a global emergency" announced by World Health Organization
The first case regarding the coronavirus has been detected in Wuhan, the capital of Hubei province in China, on December 1, 2019. At the time of this writing, the outbreak of novel coronavirus killed 1,116 people and 45,204 cases have been confirmed around the world. 2 death cases were confirmed outside of China, in Philippines and Hong Kong.
On January 30, 2020, in the second meeting of the Emergency Committee of World Health Organization, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared it is "a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC)".
The government of China completed its 1,000-bed Huoshenshan Hospital in the city of Wuhan in only nine days for its coronavirus patients who will be quarantined within this hospital.
Top image: Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, Lehmann Maupin, PKM Gallery. Image © Art Basel
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