Art Fair Tokyo 2016
Local business as usual, Art Fair Tokyo remains a family affair, as in a large family with many country cousins you only see at funerals and weddings. The fair's all inclusive, art for the average Joe policy is an easy target for criticizm, but, with no real alternatives, the fact it's still in the business is an achievement in itself.
A premise of promoting arts and close ties to bureaucratic structures makes Art Fair Tokyo prone to number rich, speech friendly statements, which in its eleventh year translated into dividing the usual, Tokyo International Forum, space into even smaller, unevenly lit cubicles, raising the number of participating galleries to a record 157.
There are no official numbers to attest if this fast fashion formula results in better sales and looking for quality works requires just as much footwork as usual. Scaled down heavyweights aside, there are two notable newcomers, matchbaco and Asakusa galleries, recently unearthed set of drawings by Jiro Yoshihara at Nagoya Gallery, Ricarda Roggan at Ando Gallery, Yu-Ichi Inoue at Marueido, Rafaël Rozendaal at Takuro Someya Contemporary Art, Ritsue Mishima at ShugoArts, Nankoku Hidai at Kashima Arts and always impressive, at any scale, Taka Ishii's cosmopolitan selection.