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Pace Gallery announces the closure of its Beijing branch because of US’ duty charges

Pace Gallery has announced to close its Beijing Branch in Mainland China. The Gallery’s outpost which is located in 798 Art District in Beijing namely the heart of Beijing is closing. However, this was the first entry from a U.S. contemporary art gallery into mainland China when the gallery first launched in 2008. This was also a huge space as it was a 22,000-square-foot space at that time. After that, branches were started in Hong Kong, Shanghai and other places but this outpost remained the first.

Pace Beijing’s president Leng Lin had a mixture of American, European and Asian artists and it was opened right alongside the 2008 Summer Olympics which were organized in Beijing as well. However, the other two galleries from Pace in Hong Kong will still remain open and Pace may also consider expanding it too.

Arne Glimcher, the founder of Pace, said in an interview about the reason for the outpost’s closure:

“It’s impossible to do business in mainland China right now and it has been for awhile, 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 is believed to be the key Western enthusiast in Chinese contemporary art nad he represents various artists such as Zhang Xiaogang, Zhang Huan, Qiu Xiaofei and Yin Xiuzhen along with others. However, Glimcher is known to be keeping an office along with a viewing room in Beijing.

Talking about the worries of operating in Mainland China, Glimcher adds that:

Since Xi has come to power, people are afraid to conspicuously show their wealth and the mainland Chinese are not buying in China, if they are, they [are] buying for their apartments in other places in the world and they come to Hong Kong anyway (for making a purchase).