Ever since visiting the Louvre in Paris I have rekindled my love affair with the art world and wanted to explore more of it and that’s how I discovered Tefaf Maastricht. Tefaf is an international art fair for several types of art from different time periods. They display paintings, antiques, photography, jewelry and a whole lot more. As I said it is an international art fair but not in terms of just showing art from different parts of the world, no actual dealers from all over the world come to the fair to display the different artworks in their collection. So at Tefaf Maastricht I could get a taste of everything from everywhere, which was perfect.
Before I get into my long four hour wander and experience at Tefaf Maastricht I wanted to touch on something that made it even more interesting for me. While browsing the website I noticed on the homepage it gives you the option of Maastricht and New York. I have wanted to go to the Met New York forever so that made me even more curious. Through doing a little bit more digging I found out that there are really rare and special pieces at display further confirming that I must go. With special I mean in the region of La Gioconda at the Louvre.
Want to know more about my experience in Paris? Click here to find out how wonderful of a time I had in Paris with my incredible itinerary.
When arriving at the fair you have the usual safety precautions but then when you walk in you are greeted with one of the most beautiful flower arrangements I have seen in a long time. You have one hanging over the information area and you have three of these hollow beams or inserts, don’t know what exactly to call them, filled to the rim with flowers on the other side. Each one with a different arrangement, each one more gorgeous than the other. From that beginning point you have three options as to how to walk the fair, straight through the middle or to the left or right. I started to the left as I thought walking in a circle would be the most logical thing to do (Spoiler alert: I was wrong I got lost many times).
| Tefaf Practical Information|
TEFAF: The European Fine Art Fair
Under 18: €20,-
Online Handling fee: €5,-
You can buy a ticket when you arrive at the fair as well, but they are subjected to availability.
Tefaf Maastricht 2020
By going to the left first I started at the Antiques. I personally had never been that big of a fan of antiques but some of the pieces I saw there completely changed my mind for that specific piece, not for all. There were many antiques that I could see why they are appreciated. One thing that absolutely fascinated me was the antique maps that were presented by Crouch Rare Books. They had a map of Venice, ‘’Iconografica Rappresentatione Della Inclita Città Di Venezia Consacrata Al Reggio Serenissimo Dominio Veneto’’ by Giuseppe Baroni and S. Giuliano on display, it absolutely mesmerized me to see what Venice used to look like in the 1700s. Especially since I have such fond memories of wandering about in Venice. They think the map is from 1729 but that is not confirmed.
You can read about my Casanova inspired Venetian wander here.
I thought I was done with the antiques when I arrived at one of the many eatery options but it turns out I was lost for the first time. Luckily for me it was a happy little accident (do you know that reference?!) because I arrived at the Tribal Art section where I found James Bond. Not really, I found an artwork by Andreas Gursky called ‘’James Bond Island Triptych’’. They are three C-print plexiglass artworks that are stunning. The more you look at them the more things you notice. Right when I walked in I noticed them hanging on the wall but I waited to go because I knew I would want to hang out there for a while. I am happy I did so because some of the paintings Day and Faber brought with them were pieces that were captivating in a way that you want to know more. You want to know that what you see is what is depicted or not.
The Tribal Art section was just one floor, so that was relatively short but luckily it was in a circle so I arrived back where I left the Antiques part. I thought I would be continuing the Antiques but I was wrong, the setup logic of Tefaf Maastricht and mine did not agree with one another and I ended up at the Paintings. Unexpected, but logical when taking a look at their floor plan, which until that moment I had not done. Oops! Anyways, there was an oil on panel painting by José Gallegos y Arnosa called ‘’Gondolas on a canal, Venice’’ from the 1850s to 1900s. What struck me about this painting is how it seems so life-like. It’s with the details and sharpness that he captured my attention and of course my ongoing love affair with Venice.
Modern and Ancient Art
From the paintings I wandered, this time directly, to the Modern and Ancient art. In the Ancient Art section, which is quite small in comparison to the rest of the sections, I didn’t really find anything that really made me go and stare the way some of the other pieces mentioned did. However in the Modern Art I section I found a piece of art that made me think; ‘’This is wondering in an art form’’. I’ll let you judge for yourself whether I am right or not.
I thought I had arrived at the last section at Tefaf Maastricht 2020, which was Design, spoiler I was obviously wrong. Anyways, that’s for later. Walking around through the Design section really makes you want to redecorate your home because you did it all wrong. There are so many beautiful functional design art pieces out there that my mind was a little blown. I don’t know if this is mentioned somewhere on the blog already but I am obsessed with chandeliers, especially french ones. Obviously, there were plenty of those through out all the sections at Tefaf Maastricht but the modern takes on them with extra sparkles (because if I am honest that is what attracts me to them) just made me want to take a few of them home while full on knowing I have no way of displaying them properly.
La Haute Joaillerie
Before leaving I thought it was a good idea to do a final check on the plan alongside a final wander, and you can’t believe how glad I was that I did because I missed one very interesting part of the fair. I missed the amazing section of La Haute Joaillerie. I am very attracted and easily distracted by shiny things as previously mentioned. At one of the stands they had a watch that was dripping in so many diamonds I imagine it coming with gym membership to practice your weightlifting. Even though I love watches, the most mesmerizing thing I saw at the entire fair was a Tiara with a necklace. I stood staring at it longer than I respectfully would like to admit.
Even though I personally had an amazing time at Tefaf Maastricht there was some tension clearly noticeable among the people visiting and the exhibitors due to the coronavirus pandemic. On the website they did explain the safety measures they were taking which gave some sense of calm for the people I was told by some exhibitors but they were still a little scared. Unfortunately in the end it turned out it wasn’t enough because Tefaf Maastricht was shortened till March 11th 2020 while it normally would have been a week (from March 7th till March 15th). In their reasoning for cancelling they explained it got more and more complicated for the international exhibitors to return home due to the coronavirus protective measures in place in their respective countries.
I don’t want to end the post about my visit to Tefaf Maastricht on the unfortunate news about the coronavirus so I want to press the fact that going to Tefaf Maastricht was an amazing experience. Seeing some of the artworks so up close (closer than in some museums) definitely enriched my story. Also, a friend of mine told me that a Van Gogh I saw in person at the fair was sold for 15 Million Euros on the last day of the fair. Needless to say my jaw dropped.
All in all this event is one I am happy I didn’t miss because my eyes got treated to international fine art without having to go to each individual country.