Cologne The 51st “Cologne Fine Art & Design” (Cofa) looks fresher and better than before after the corona-related break in 2020. Daniel Hug, director of the neighboring art Cologne fair since 2009, now heads both fairs: “They complement each other but do not interfere. ” Tickets for one fair, which can only be purchased online, are also valid for the other; the distances between halls 3 and 11 are short.
The design department, which has been significantly strengthened, does without classic cars and brings together international exhibitors with an attractive program. The Cofa mix of images, sculptures with clocks, lamps and furniture from antiquity to the present day is a success. Not all, but a number of curated Cofa stands meet the highest standards.
Above all, the “The Showroom” department, where all exhibitors contribute art under 5000 euros. This focus has never looked so gripping and of high quality. An eye-catcher was provided by Dr. Schmitz-Avila: a swinging upholstered armchair from 1835 with spring steel that looks fantastically modern and like an art object. It should cost 3500 euros.
The Augenweide Showroom is designed by collector, retailer and researcher Sebastian Jacobi from Bad Ems. The joint stand “Vienna 1900” combines six-digit Egon Schiele watercolors from the WK Gallery with art deco-style Viennese furniture, to which the gallery at Albertina contributes.
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The Swiss dealers Dierk Dierking and Jean-David Cahn skillfully confront ancient Greek torso with the minimalist steel sculptures by Otto Boll. Dierking is also preparing a big performance for sculptor Christiane Löhr at her booth. Löhr creates sculptures of fragile plants that give the sculpture’s primary theme, loads and bearing, the lightness of being. Available at prices between 10,000 and 24,000 euros (excl. VAT).
Large sculpture also attracts at Remco van Leeuwen and at Viebahn. The Dutchman comes with a wild rider: the horse gallops, the cloak flies up in a undulating way, the rider fights: it is Saint Jacob who fights against the Moors. The walnut figure, carved in Spain around 1600, is said to cost 65,000 euros.
Viebahn from Worpswede placed a neoclassical archer by Ernst Moritz Geyger as a showstopper. Anyone who sees themselves in a heavy golden mirror with ancient symbolism experiences a revaluation of self-confidence. Viebahn is selling this Russian luxury property for 28,500 euros.
If you do not want to dig deep into your pockets, you can find Japanese netsuke from 350 euros at Hans-Martin Schmitz. André Kirbach shows drawings by Hans Koch for less than 2,000 euros on his finely balanced stand.
The stand “meinweiß Home” offers very unusual works from Italy from the period between 1938 and 1942. Pier Luigi Giordani could have designed a glass table with a crossed bottom that looks like bones but is made of – restored – papmaché. This table is a space-dominating sculpture. Sebastian Jakobi expects 54,000 euros for this. His elegantly swinging upholstered armchairs with high backrests from the 1940s also come from Milan.
For the first time, Berlin-based interior designer Gisbert Pöppler is exhibiting under his own name without a gallery. The oval wooden plate on the “Kayak” dining table for 45,220 euros rests on painted steel feet. The designer has a great feel for perfectly matched salmon, red and blue tones. They place the furniture in day and radiate joy and lightness. All visitors to the fair, which lasts until Sunday, can really use them.
More: Antiques in Munich: highlights of the art fair: restart with confidence