Earlier this month, as part of our ongoing series of collaborative events, we joined Fiumano Clase at their booth in London Art Fair for an evening of discussion and conversation about lending works to museums.

We invited attendees of the fair, curators, collectors, and enthusiasts to gather together to hear from a range of arts professionals, including members of the Vastari team, speak about their experiences with private loans, international museum collaborations, and the general exhibition process.

As our platform facilitates loans of privately owned objects by connecting curators, collectors, and exhibition producers online, the process of loaning is always an important and popular topic of discussion, and opening up discourse between the private and public spheres about their individual experiences is crucial to our work.

After the Vastari team opened with an introduction about the company’s mission, the evening began with a wonderful analogy by Dr. Rosalind Mckever, currently a research curator at the V&A and previously of the Estorick Collection, Met Museum and National Gallery. Comparing the museum to a family member, she described the process of private loans from an institutional perspective and her experience of working with private collectors. She gave a great insight into how museums choose works, what they expect from working with privately owned objects, and what collectors can expect when loaning their pieces on long or short term contracts. Comparing the museum to an ‘aunty’, and how you should treat that aunty, made everyone think about the process in a new and palatable light.

After discussing loaning and borrowing from an institutional perspective, Xuhua Slyvia Zhan, a visiting lecturer for MA Chinese Heritage Management at Middlesex University and the Artistic Director for China Culture Connect, then followed with a discourse about lending overseas, talking specifically about the Chinese market. Many audience members had no experience in collaborating with loaning objects to China, and Slyvia explored the history of their museums and collections as well as the processes of loaning objects to national institutions. She spent a large amount of time answering questions from the group and chatting about her experience using Vastari as a tool for making connections.

We all spent a lot of time admiring the work on show at Fiumano Clase’s booth, and after the talks came to an end Francesca Fiumano and Andres Clase gave us an introduction to the pieces on display. Everyone stayed to have a look around the booth and discuss the works, before heading out for a browse of the rest of the booths at London Art Fair.

Enabling these discussions and curating events that bring together professionals from all over the art world is part of Vastari’s passionate vision. Keep an eye out for more of these events in Europe throughout the rest of 2019!