At long last, Frieze Seoul launched its first edition this week, and on the fair’s first day, some participating galleries said they’d sold a few works for more than $1 million. By that measure, the fair has been a success for at least a few of the world’s biggest galleries.
Most of the other sales that galleries reported were much lower than $1 million, however, which means that Frieze Seoul is not commanding purchases on the order of another Asian competitor, Art Basel Hong Kong, where prices can sometimes exceed $10 million. Still, galleries said they’d sold to Korean and Chinese collectors, which could mean that interest in the powerful art scenes of those two countries is strong.
It’s worth reminding that it is difficult to independently verify the sales that gallery report as having taken place at art fairs, and that in some cases these purchases are often conducted in advance and only announced later on, once events kick off. Frieze runs through Monday, which could mean more big transactions are still to come.