The idea of an “antique dealers’ fair", which came about in 1956, was to create an event for art lovers and collectors to enjoy a celebration of beautiful and elegant objects in a prestigious setting.
Pier-Luigi Pizzi, Jean-Michel Wilmotte, Christian Lacroix, Karl Lagerfeld and Jacques Grange have all put their incredible talents at the service of this event which is always hotly anticipated by great collectors and the international elite.
The Biennale des Antiquaires is a consistently impressive event for its visitors, bringing together some of the world’s rarest pieces and attracting the most knowledgeable collectors and institutions from all over the world, all under the roof of the Grand Palais.
Under the presidency of Dominique Chevalier and the management of Jean-Daniel Compain, several changes were made to the 2016 Biennial, to reassert its position as a major event on the international scene.
Among these changes:
- For the first time ever, the process of choosing exhibitors, formerly carried out by a committee from the board of directors of the Syndicat National des Antiquaires (National Union of Antique Dealers), was carried out by an independent and external committee. Chaired by Henri Loyrette, former head of the Musée d'Orsay and honorary chairman and director of the Musée du Louvre, this committee, which was made up of collectors, art historians, curators and foreign dealers (Marin Karmitz, Maryvonne Pinault, Amyn Aga Khan, Carel van Tuyll and more) chose exhibitors, invited new dealers and encouraged absentees to return.
- Nathalie Crinière was entrusted with updating the event’s scenography; its high quality, simple elegance greatly contributed to the renewed success of the Biennale.
- An even more remarkable private programme, intended for collectors and institutions, drawing on Paris’ exceptional cultural history.
The support and involvement of the Biennial’s committee, Nathalie Crinière's exceptional staging and the new initiatives launched over the course of several months were conclusive: the 2016 edition welcomed 124 participants, compared to just over 80 in 2014, 40% of whom came from abroad for the first time ever.