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Pace Gallery in Beijing. Courtesy of Pace.
Pace Gallery in Beijing. Courtesy of Pace.

Pace Closes Beijing Outpost, Thor Shannon Joins David Zwirner, and More

Pace has closed its Beijing gallery. The decision was made as tensions mount between the United States and China over the breakdown of trade talks between the two countries. Located in the city’s 798 Art District, the 22,000-square-foot space first opened in 2008 and was led by director Leng Lin. “It’s impossible to do business in mainland China right now and it has been for awhile,” gallery founder Arne Glimcher told Artnews. “The last straw is Trump’s duty on Chinese artists coming into this country and Xi Jinping’s duty on Americans coming into China.”

Glimcher added that a 38 percent luxury tax on works purchased in mainland China is hindering the success of commercial galleries in the country. He is planning to maintain an office and a viewing room in the city and may further expand the gallery’s presence in Hong Kong following the closure. The move has many wondering what other blue-chip galleries will do. Among the galleries currently working to open branches in mainland China are Lévy Gorvy, Hauser & Wirth, Lisson, and Almine Rech.

Hollis Taggart in New York has appointed Paul Efstathiou as director of contemporary art and Jillian Russo as director of exhibitions. Efstathiou has worked with the gallery on several exhibitions, including group shows and the Los Angeles–based artist John Knuth’s first solo presentation in New York City. Russo previously served as curator for the Art Students League of New York, where she organized exhibitions such as “Making/Breaking Traditions: Teachers of Ai Weiwei” (2014) and “The Masters: Art Students League Teachers and their Students” (2018).

Commenting on the appointments, dealer Hollis Taggart said: “While this is an important and exciting expansion of our business, we see it as a complement to our ongoing work in presenting the depth and breadth of historic American art, especially within the postwar era. We are delighted to bring both Paul and Jillian aboard to support the development and implementation of this vision and to work with the existing leadership team to find interesting synergies and connections between our exhibitions of historic and contemporary art.”

David Zwirner will welcome Thor Shannon of Gavin Brown’s Enterprise to its staff in September. “It is both profoundly thrilling and bittersweet,” Shannon remarked about the appointment in an interview with Artnews. “I adore Gavin and the artists and the staff and the ethos of the gallery. I’ve been honored to be a part of it. At the same time, I’m really excited about this opportunity.”

Shannon first joined Gavin Brown’s Enterprise as an intern while working toward an undergraduate degree at New York University. In 2013, he became a gallery assistant and has over the years served in various roles, including director.

KAWS has left Perrotin after more than a decade with the gallery. He will now be exclusively represented by Skarstedt gallery, which has locations in New York and London. The artist first joined Skarstedt about a year and a half ago and had his first exhibition, “GONE,” at the gallery’s Seventy-Ninth Street space last November. In April, KAWS’s work achieved a new auction record when his painting The KAWS ALBUM, 2005, a sold for $14.7 million at Sotheby’s Hong Kong.

“We are very proud of the work we did with KAWS over these eleven years of our collaboration,” gallerist Emmanuel Perrotin said in a statement. “Considering all the pressure, this collaboration has come to an end. In any case, we will be satisfied if his career continues to develop in a good way and we wish him all the very best moving forward.”

Kayne Griffin Corcoran in Los Angeles announced its representation of artist Sam Moyer; Locks Gallery in Philadelphia now represents painter Louise Fishman; and Cory Arcangel and Andy Robert are now on the roster of Greene Naftali in New York.