Total immersion: one visitor absorbs the huge range of art and antiques at TEFAF Maastricht.

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Attendance at TEFAF Maastricht is, for many dealers, the peak of their trading year as they unveil the fruits of months, in some cases years, of buying the most extraordinary objects for the world’s leading collectors and institutional buyers.

So for our preview of TEFAF Maastricht 2018, we focus on the journey these exhibitors must take to be part of the world’s pre-eminent art and antiques fair. It starts many months before they set foot in the Maastricht Exhibition and Congress Center at the beginning of March.

We record the challenges they must overcome on the way (see The Road to Maastricht, p24-28). In doing so, we don’t shy away from highlighting the costs involved (see p26 and TEFAF Round Table, p30-33).

Those costs can be prohibitive, in particular for younger galleries. Which is why TEFAF’s accessible Showcase initiative for dealers of a younger vintage (see p35-36) is so admirable. In a crowded fair market, injecting new blood with serious intent is good news for the future of TEFAF Maastricht as it strives to remain the destination event for the world’s collectors and institutions, and of course, for dealers.