What's unique this year at the China International Import Expo (CIIE) is a section dedicated to art pieces. Foreign galleries are expected to bring their expensive paintings and sculptures in the hope of attracting Chinese collectors.
One of the art companies that is being enthusiastic in attending this year's CIIE is British art company HENI. The company just entered China this year and will also be a fresh face at the import expo this year.
In mid-October, HENI brought nearly 30 art pieces to an exhibition in Shanghai's Free Trade Zone for a preview, 10 of which will be on display at the import expo in November.
"In recent years, China's art market has matured at a fast and steady pace. The participation of multiple international art institutions and galleries has been important in order to boost the art trade and revive public confidence in the art market," said Zheng Yan, executive director of HENI China.
HENI is not alone. Other well-known auctions houses such as Christie's and Sotheby's will also be bringing their art pieces to CIIE. Total value of the art pieces on show will reach some $36 million.
"The import expo is only running for five days, but the buying and selling of these art pieces needs time. We hope our exhibition will encourage overseas galleries and art organizations to enter the market before the import expo, allowing them to get familiar with the Chinese market in advance," said Jiang Mingwei, general manager of Shanghai Free Trade Zone International Culture Investment and Development.
China's art sales market has been booming rapidly. A report conducted by Art Basel shows the total worldwide sales value in the art market reached over $50 billion in 2020 – with sales from within China ranking the second highest worldwide.