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Art fair with Thai boxing proves controversial combo (2)

By Wang Jie (Shanghai Daily)

09:24, May 07, 2012

A member of organizing staff for the Shanghai Art Fair, which is held in the autumn, said that he was concerned about security and weather issues. "There's a big risk," said the organizer, who asked not to be named.

"The weather in Shanghai last week was hot that I wouldn't dare to imagine what the temperature under canvas would have been like," he said. "And If too many people come in, then the security of these artworks inside is placed in danger."

But Zhang said that all these potential pitfalls had been carefully considered. "Because it is an open public space, so we have had to take everything into consideration, otherwise it would be a mess."

Other critics speculated that in a bid to popularize the event Shanghai Spring Art Salon organizers might put off art dealers and collectors.

"The ultimate figure any art fair is concerned with is the number of artworks sold, not the number of visitors," said Zhan Hao, a local art critic. "After all this is not a carnival where one can play and laugh. If this is not clear to the organizer, then the fair is doomed to fail."

Another city art fair, "Citizen Art Shanghai 2012, Hotel Art Fair," also takes place this month and also hopes that a change of venue may bring new buyers. It is being staged at Shanghai Garden Hotel, with hotel rooms functioning as exhibition booths. This is the first time for an art fair to be held in a five-star hotel in China.

According to the organizer, the four-day event will attract nearly 50 galleries from home and abroad with 1,500 pieces of art for sale. "We are primarily aiming at hotel guests as potential buyers of art," said spokeswoman Li Yachun. "We need the right people to come and buy."

? Shanghai Spring Art Salon

Date: May 10-14, 10am-6pm

Address: New Hongqiao Center Park, 2238, Yan'an Rd W.

Admission: 50 yuan

? Citizen Art Shanghai 2012

Date: May 18, 7-10pm (VIP evening); May 19-21, 12-8pm

Address: 15-17/F, Garden Hotel, 58 Maoming Rd S.

Admission: 100 yuan (300 yuan for VIP evening)

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