The kings officially opened this Thursday the International Fair of Contemporary Art of Madrid (ARCO), where they had a nod to Italy in the midst of the concern for the expansion of the coronavirus when visiting a gallery in the region of Lombardy, one of the most affected by the epidemic. Of the 209 galleries of about thirty countries participating in the 39th edition of ARCO in the Ifema fairgrounds in Madrid, a good part of the attention has been given by the eleven Italian galleries, most of them from areas where there are more cases diagnosed .
One of them is that of Massimo and Francesca Minini, of Brescia, in the region of Lombardy, in the so-called “red zone” of the epidemic. Although the stop in this gallery was scheduled for days, it has been appreciated as a gesture towards Italy as one of the points where graphic media have had the opportunity to capture the kings. “They have not asked us anything about the coronavirus. We knew for days that they were coming to visit us because it is an important gallery. But what is due to the coronavirus is an interpretation of the press, ”said the head of the gallery, Alessandra Minini, in statements to EFE-TV.
In the minutes in which they have remained in the exhibitor, they have exchanged impressions on various artists, in particular on the works of the American artist Sheila Hicks, which Felipe VI has recognized to the surprise of the Italian dealer. Given the concern that the epidemic is generating in the mass events, those responsible for ARCO have installed numerous sanitary soap dispensers and informational posters with the recommendations of the World Health Organization (WHO) to prevent any possible contagion.
As in other editions, among the participants in the fair there is no Asian collector, so it has not been necessary to take exceptional measures, and the contest takes place normally.
Don Felipe and Mrs. Letizia have been accompanied by the Minister of Culture and Sports, José Manuel Rodríguez Uribes, and the new director of ARCO, Maribel López, with whom they have posed at the beginning before two giant hands exposed as a welcome.
With them have been the mayor of Madrid, José Luis Martínez-Almeida; the president of the Community of Madrid, Isabel Díaz Ayuso; and that of the Balearic Islands, Francina Armengol, which has been added to having a representation of gallery owners of the archipelago at the fair.
For about an hour, the entourage has traveled around 15 exhibitors of galleries and media, both Spanish and from France, England, United States and Brazil.
Unlike other years, in this edition there is no guest country and the event is centered on the concept “It’s only a matter of time”.
This main section, which the kings have seen at the beginning, revolves around the work of the vindicated Cuban-American artist Félix González-Torres (1957-1996) and welcomes the proposals of 16 artists from 13 galleries.