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The 1st Art Thessaloniki International Contemporary Art Fair is now a reality

With 25 galleries from nine countries, seven parallel projects, 25 participating museums, artists and museum exhibitions, the 1st Art Thessaloniki International Contemporary Art Fair is opening on 1 December, under the organisation of TIF-Helexpo, in cooperation with gallery owner Pantelis Tsatsis, who will also serve as the artistic director of the event. The 1st Art Thessaloniki, to be inaugurated on Thursday, 1 December at 20:00, will last until 4 December and will be deployed in Pavilions 9 and 10 of Thessaloniki International Exhibition Centre.

Art Thessaloniki will take place with the participation of 25 galleries from 9 countries, namely Austria, Greece, France, Japan, Israel, Italy, Russia, Serbia and Turkey, and 25 stands representing museums, institutes, schools and Art Fairs. The artists of honour will be the sculptor Theodoros and the painter Nikos Sachinis, while emphasis will also be placed on Marios Prassinos. The Fair will be complemented by a dynamic, rich schedule of parallel events, including the following museum exhibitions:

- Collector’s eye Ι: including works, engravings and original books by the visual artist Marios Prassinos, the installation by Christos Antonaropoulos, the Kostopoulos collection. Curator: Manos Stefanidis.

- Jewish Museum. Curator: Drorit Gur Arie (Director of Petach Tikva Museum of Art), Tel Aviv.

- outsider art / eccentric art. Curators: Pavlos Vassiliadis, Sania Papa.

- 'Others - Once - Now'. Curators: Haris Savvopoulos, Louiza Avgita.

- Collector’s eye ΙΙ, contemporary art collection, Aris Stoidis' collection. Curator: Maria Kenanidou.

During today's Press Conference, in view of the opening of the 1st Art Thessaloniki, Mr Tassos Tzikas, the President of the national exhibition agency, spoke about the historical relationship between TIF-Helexpo and culture throughout the decades. "We had intended to organise an art fair for some time now, and today we have the pleasure of presenting it", noted Mr Tzikas, who stressed that networking between international galleries and Greek artists can be achieved through this new Fair.

"This is like a train with 25 galleries starting off on a journey - next year, we'll be needing more wagons", noted the artistic director of Art Thessaloniki, Mr Pantelis Tsatsis, adding that the organisation of this exhibition was a vision that sprang from the belief that culture is a driving force for the economy. He stressed that foires are not held just anywhere, but only where gallery owns believe it is worth the effort. "We cannot call Thessaloniki a destination if it has no art to offer", he stated, underlining the international character of the Fair, its emphasis towards the Orient, as well as its close ties with Greek galleries, not just in Thessaloniki and Athens, but throughout the peripheral regions of the country.

Mr Alexis Tsaxirlis, the deputy general director of the company, stated that Art Thessaloniki will become one of the most internationalised fairs of TIF-Helexpo, with the plan for the event stretching until 2020. "This is a Fair that we had been considering for years and we finally managed to include it in our exhibition calendar", he stressed, adding that Art Thessaloniki closes a major cycle of exhibitions for 2016, which achieved significant results despite adverse conditions.

The 1st Art-Thessaloniki International Contemporary Art Fair is organized under the auspices of the Ministry of Culture and the Ministry of Interior (Macedonia-Thrace). The event is being held with the support and cooperation of the Municipality of Thessaloniki and numerous city agencies, which are joining their forces in the effort to promote the exhibition so that it may become an annual institution.

The working hours of the Fair are: Thursday: 17:00-22:00, Friday: 14:00-21:00, Saturday-Sunday: 11:00-21:00.

Admission to the Fair is 5 euros.