Home Magazine A conversation with Liubov Belousova, CEO and Founder of BOCCARA ART Galleries

Related articles: MeetMe#33 | In conversation with Vincenzo Maccarone - MeetMe#32 | In conversation with Will Ramsay - Yu Lanying presso Boccara Art, New York

Dear Liubov, the name of your Gallery project is “BOCCARA ART Galleries”: you have been dealing in fact with more than one venue in eight cities.  Your galleries are in New York, Miami, Los Angeles, Monterrey and Moscow, with representatives in Chicago, Monaco and Seoul. We can totally state that you spread the artists’ works you’re dealing with all around the world. How did it happened, once you started from New York?

Yes, indeed, our first venue was opened in New York.  But there we were restricted space wise which limited the amount of art we could present. That’s why we have launched numerous pop-ups and exhibitions all over the world, especially during art fairs.In the past we’ve regularly participated in international art fairs, our average goal was to do about 12 a year. These art fairs enabled us to meet art collectors, discover new artists and put us on the map as an influential gallery.Due to Covid restrictions over the past year, we have put all of our focus into developing our online presence. Though presently most of our sales happen through digital platforms, our galleries serve as “a place to meet” for art lovers and collectors. I do believe that having a venue is important as in person communication and experience can hardly be replaced. 

Today our Miami Gallery has become the starting point of all our art projects such as video series “Everything & Art” and the special events we hold there. 


Everything and art, Boccara Art.


Antonio Nocera at Boccara Art, Miami Art Basel.


You have been dealing mainly with works by artists who are on the primary market since long time: famous and historic ones such as Calder, Warhol, Picasso, Fontana, Vasarely or Haring, just to name some, but you are also attracted by a research into different mediums and worlds. Your last project with Lanying Yu is an example. How the exhibition “In search of lost ocean” you curated last year in New York was born?

“In search of lost ocean” was a project we presented during Asia Week New York 2020.

For that exhibit we made two important presentations. Jeong Kang Ok in our Brooklyn Gallery and Yu LanYing in the Manhattan Gallery. We had a lot of press coverage and attention from collectors at the opening. But unfortunately our success was cut short and we had to close both spaces due to the pandemic.  

I’m in love with Yu’s art pieces as they are very rich in texture and I admire her one of a kind technique. She is a leading female figure in Chinese contemporary ink painting. She employs the use of Chinese ink and mixed media on rice paper to create entirely original work. Her paintings reflect the accomplishments of a seasoned master indebted to the riches of traditional Chinese painting and experimentation with western abstract expressionism.

I wish I could present her work to wider audiences. Her art should be seen in person as no picture can capture and convey its unique and exquisite beauty. I cannot even begin to imagine how she performs such a high level of craft. She’s definitely one of my favorite artists.


BOCCARA ART Charge Into Asia Week Amid Coronavirus 2.


Yu Lanying, Boccara Art. 


What are the main differences on the market by working both with modern artists than with contemporary ones? 

I’m inclined towards modern art and am always searching for a new talent, special themes and unique techniques among contemporary artists.

Modern art market is limited to the existing works, all of them are in private collections. Contemporary market allows more flexibility and variety. Personally, I’m very much attracted by Asian contemporary artists such as Kim Seungwoo who does sculptures from real Korean coins, Hyun Ae Kang who uses Korean alphabet characters and glyphs in all the touches and strokes to implement inscriptions of her dialogues with the sacred in her works, and of course Yu LanYing is one of my favorites.

I m a big fan of Ink paintings. Ink painting has a very long tradition in Asia. It was used in art and calligraphy, for over 2 millennia. However, in the 1980s, the artists reinvented traditional ink art by adopting influences and practices from the West. Chinese painters started to experiment with the media. That’s how the New Ink Art movement was born. New Ink Art combines contemporary painting with the ancient art of calligraphy and traditional Chinese painting.

In traditional ink painting, the brush is more important than the ink, since ink follows the brush to create a line. Contemporary Ink Artists, like Yu LanYing, separated the ink from the brush, thus introducing the abstract into Ink Art. Creative process includes pouring, splashing and rinsing large areas of ink or even using airbrush application to create figurative forms.

The New Ink Art movement has gained international recognition with both Christie’s and Sotheby’s organizing Contemporary Ink painting auctions in 2013 and 2014 with prices ranging from several hundred thousand to several million dollars.


HYUN AE KANG - Solo Show in Monaco.


Was 2020 a challenging year for BOCCARA ART? Did you improve your digital services?

Absolutely. We emphasised the efforts  in strengthening our online presence. It was a big challenge but it was definitely worth while.We sell art online and ship works to so many different countries. The transparency of the art world today and its affordability ended up by bringing so many new clients to the market, a lot of young collectors and art lovers.

The fact that BOCCARA ART represents a network of services could be an interesting way for the future of contemporary art galleries?

I do believe that the future is in collaboration. We collaborate with museums, foundations, architects and designers.We collaborate with furniture creators, designer, museums, foundations and that allows us to offer a wider range of services to our clients. Network is important. And today, more than ever.

What would you suggest to a young gallery who just opened? 

Work on your online presence and choose good online art platforms to present yourself on. Don’t forget that editorials are important. Keep on doing exciting projects, curated exhibitions and be seen and heard. Enable collectors to discover something new in your work and have them fall in love with it. 


Lune Chan, Matthew Jon Barash and Liubov Belousova CEO and Founder of BOCCARA ART Galleries.


Cover image: Liubov Belousova, CEO and Founder of the BOCCARA ART Galleries.

Written by Rossella Farinotti


Stay Tuned on Kooness magazine for more exciting news from the art world.