AboutMay 17th marks the launch of Artige Fine Art Ltd., a new face in the British art scene. Artige is an international art dealership and consultancy firm specialising in big name contemporary art from Russia and the former Soviet Union. The inaugural exhibition shows over 50 paintings by four Russian and two British artists. The works include the luminous dreamscapes of Mihail Antonov from the Karakalpak State Art Museum; peaceful landscapes and still lives of Boris Klevogin whose works hang in the Ministry of Culture of Russia and the State Gallery in Moscow; the neo-surrealist âImprovisations' of award-winning painter Alexander Gorbunov; complex works of the well-known Belarusian artist Walera Martynchik; landscapes and nudes by Yorkshire artist Trevor Neal and works by Gordon King, one of England's most popular water colourists.
Artige is the brainchild of Russian-American art collector Diana Drapkin, a former Investment Banker with a distinguished 14 year career in the City and Wall Street. Diana has set up the Artige business to combine her great passion in Fine Art with her sound financial knowledge. Despite the worldwide recession, sales of Russian art have been booming. For example, Nine Russian art auctions, spread over four days in London at the end of 2009 pulled in a combined £40.1m (est. £40m-51m). The results were just below last year's £41m total, but were up 37% on the market's low of £29m in June 2009. Ms Drapkin's advice may well be worth serious consideration.
As well as a series of exhibitions and events in 2010, Artige offers art consultancy and art investment services. For these, Diana works in tangent with specialists at the major auction houses. Artige's consultancy service covers all the difficult areas involved in a collection of artwork: from finding and acquiring artwork, to organising and managing a major collection.