Art galleries in Italy are in danger of closing: the ANGAMC cry of alarm

    Art galleries in Italy are in danger of closing: the ANGAMC cry of alarm

    The current crisis is unprecedented, so without strategic actions, art galleries in Italy risk closure: urgent measures are loudly requested by the ANGAMC in a new letter to Minister Franceschini.

    In Italy, the cultural sector and the modern and contemporary art market is supported in part by art galleries, real businesses rooted in the territory, which carry out around 5,000 exhibitions every year, employing over 10,000 operators. (gallery assistants, artists, curators, restorers, specialized transporters etc.).

    A sector that generates a large volume of business, with important repercussions also in other economic areas, such as hotels, restaurants and trade fairs.

    ANGAMC – The National Association of Modern and Contemporary Art Galleries, a trade association, in these days, addressing the Minister of Culture Dario Franceschini, still urges a concrete response for the Italian art system and in particular for the gallery sector, calling for the implementation of strategic actions and the planning of interventions aimed at a rapid recovery of investments in the sector.

    The restrictive measures, the closures of exhibition spaces and the suspension of fair events have compromised the activity of many art galleries, especially in the contemporary sector, which are among the main supporters of young artists, causing an unprecedented crisis.

    Failure to participate in trade fairs, which each year according to the Market Reports and up to 2019 accounted for about 46% of turnover for galleries with a presence at about 4 exhibitions around the world, resulted in a sharp decline and for many not it was enough to rely on online sales, which require professionalism and attention.

    «That of art – underlines the president Mauro Stefanini – is a global and competitive market in which Italy has often found itself on the sidelines due to restrictive and anachronistic rules already exceeded in other competing countries. A clear example is offered to us by the serious problems generated by the failure to implement the reform introduced by law no. 124 (so-called “Competition Law”). In this case, in the face of a laudable attempt to reform the sector in a liberal and European sense, we find that most of the indications contained therein are still largely disregarded. To date, there are many interpretations of the law that make it impossible to operate clearly and effectively and produce a considerable increase in administrative disputes ».

    Difficulties already widely reported last March to Minister Franceschini by the main operators of the art market in Italy gathered in a special working group, called “Apollo Project”.

    Now a new letter sent last April 14, on behalf of the more than 200 associated gallerists and gallerists, underlines the urgency of resuming a dialogue with the institutions and politics, bringing vital issues to the discussion table for art galleries, such as Art Bonus, VAT first market, VAT imports, SIAE / resale right, already submitted to the attention of the Ministry of Culture in the past.

    And if in Italy the stalemate and uncertainty affects art galleries, there is no shortage of examples of excellence and support for the sector in Europe: the “Neustart Kultur” aid program launched by the German government has provided one billion euros in support of the national cultural system, of which 16 million dedicated to art galleries.

    Photo Credits: Galleria Nazionale di Roma


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