CARE AND FEEDING OF ART 2015 - Christmas 2015

1. NEW YORK - “There was a smell of rotting food, rotting chips, rotting meat,” Christopher Redgrave, son of the sculptor William Redgrave, told a journalist, describing the scene he found when retrieving his father’s works from the fire-gutted Momart art storage facility in 2004. The East London conflagration reportedly claimed a “significant” portion of Charles Saatchi’s collection, along with important institutional holdings, racking up aggregate losses of between £30 million and £50 million. Located within a larger industrial complex, Momart’s 10,000-square-foot facility was the unintended victim of a fire that spread from a neighboring unit, where it had been started by burglars. The storage company eventually settled all claims, amounting to tens of millions of pounds, after a group legal action was launched alleging that its setup was “a disaster waiting to happen” and “wholly unsuitable for high-value fine art.”
More than a decade later, this expensive disaster is a mere memory, and the art storage industry is riding high on the same tide lifting the art market in general. There’s “an increasing demand for high-quality warehouse facilities,” insurer AXA Art’s technical officer, Maik Haede, noted in a recent internal briefing provided to ARTINFO. “With the rise of the art market and art prices, we have seen rise of storage facilities in Luxembourg and Switzerland and expect more in China and other Asian regions in the near future. And now that trend has expanded to the US with the opening of a new facility recently,” Haede continued, referring to Fritz Dietl’s 36,000-square-foot Delaware facility, which the veteran art shipper expects “to fill up by the end of next year, at the latest.”
The dangers have not disappeared, however. If anything, according to Haede, the worldwide proliferation of warehouses...More http://www.blouinartinfo.com/news/story/1281627/disaster-waiting-to-happen-freeports-and-the-risk-of-storing?utm_source=BLOUIN+ARTINFO+Newsletters&utm_campaign=0906a47ffb-Daily+Digest+November+19+2015&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_df23dbd3c6-0906a47ffb-83005727