TEFAF Maastricht 2023

The vetting system at TEFAF Maastricht aims to create “the best possible environment for collectors”. 

Image: Alixelay via TEFAF

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Its Old Master Paintings: French, Italian, Spanish and British committee was cut down from 20 members to 16 and Old Master Paintings: Dutch, Flemish and German was reduced from 16 to 14.

Will Korner, head of fairs at TEFAF, said: “The final number of committee members is due to various reasons; some can’t make it this edition, other members were not replaced on one-to-one ratio and finally we do know from our vetting community that smaller groups are often more efficient and pragmatic in order to have meaningful discussions and to get around the fair. The size of the committee often fluctuates from year to year.”

This year 270 dealers from 22 countries stand at the event running from March 7-14. Its vetting committee is among the largest in the world, comprising 230 international vetting members in 31 different categories. The organisation has worked to present its committees as rigorous and exacting, excising trade members in 2018 and publicising its use of recent scientific research techniques as well as the knowledge of connoisseurs.

‘Best environment’

According to TEFAF’s website, these methods create “the best possible environment for collectors”. The committees are led by Wim Pijbes, TEFAF’s global chairman of vetting committees.

Korner added: “Every year, new museum and art professionals join the committees. The decision on who becomes a committee member is made by an independent vetting steering committee, which includes representatives from both the dealer and vetting community [led by Pijbes]. They consider input from dealers, vetters, and other stakeholders to ensure that the committees reflect the opportunities and challenges in the art market and museums.

“Every year there is some degree of change to ensure that the committees cover all categories, mediums, and periods. This process is in addition to the expertise and research conducted by our exhibitors themselves.

“This year’s process has not changed, although some vetters who were not selected this year may be unhappy about it. We regret any negative feelings, but all vetters who have contributed to our fairs are valued.”

See our TEFAF Maastricht preview in Dealers' Diary.