The Paris art fairs La Biennale and Fine Arts Paris are to merge into one event this November.
The snappily-named Fine Arts Paris & La Biennale will run at first from 8 to 13 November this year at the Carrousel du Louvre, before moving to the Grand Palais Ephémère in November 2023 and then the renovated Grand Palais in November 2024.
The merger was apparently instigated by the RMN-Grand Palais, the French cultural body that runs the venue and was most recently in the news for controversially replacing the long-running Fiac event with a new contemporary art fair from the owners of Art Basel which will debut this October.
The Agence d'Événements Culturels, which runs the Salon du Dessin and Fine Arts Paris, will organise the new fair. Meanwhile, the SNA (Syndicat National des Antiquaires), which has organised La Biennale since 1962, will advise on disciplines such as jewellery, antique furniture and antiquities, alongside organising the usual grand gala dinner.
It was only last May that the fair formerly known (since 1962) as the Paris Biennale had its name changed to La Biennale. The aim was to “turn the page of the Biennale, in order to set up a new event” after this once prestigious fair ws blighted by a run of scandals and difficulties. La Biennale ran from 26 November to 5 December 2021 at the Grand Palais Ephémère.
The Old Master drawings dealer Louis de Bayser will be the president of the new Fine Arts Paris & La Biennale fair which, he says, "has the ambition to become a global flagship in classical and Modern arts; the international event that Paris deserves”.
Annisabelle Berès-Montanari, the president of the SNA, says it "welcomes this alliance, which will enable the new event to refocus on defending the profession and serving its members. The two fairs together will generate synergies and will be supported by a team of professionals to manage an independent and ambitious show.”