5 Top Contemporary Art Fairs in Paris During October | FIAC & More

Paris has long served as an epicenter of fine art. Each fall, collectors from around the world descend on the city of light to attend FIAC, the country’s most prestigious art fair. FIAC stands for Foire Internationale d’Art Contemporain (International Fair of Contemporary Art) and was founded in 1974. I arrived to Paris on Tuesday October 20th to attend this celebrated contemporary art fair.

FIAC is so incredibly popular that eleven other art fairs took place around the city at the same time in order to attract a very wide range of art collectors. Of course FIAC exhibited the top-tier internationally acclaimed galleries, but many of the satellite fairs blew me away with their high level of quality.

Take a quick tour of my favorite works and fairs below…


The main fair takes place at the majestic Grand Palais, a large, historic exhibition center where all sorts of prestigious events have taken place such as the Chanel fashion shows and Paris Photo fair, since the early 20th century!

FIAC Entrance Grand Palais

FIAC Entrance Grand Palais

Cosima Von Bonin, Smoke, 2008
Acrylic, LED, neon and steel, at Gabriele Senn Galerie

Jules de Balincourt
Jules de Balincourt, When Masses Become Monuments, 2015
Oil on panel, at Victoria Miro Gallery

Jeppe Hein 303 Gallery

Jeppe Hein, Almost Something, 2015
2 feathers, glass sphere, ventilator, at 303 Gallery

Jeppe Hein, Breathing Watercolours (Wallpaper), 2015
Wallpaper, acrylic paint, at 303 Gallery

Richard Deacon - Alphabet B
Richard Deacon, Alphabet B, 2009
Aluminum, at Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac

Victor Burgin Minnesota Abstract
Victor Burgin, Minnesota Abstract, 1989
Silk screen panels (Triptych) at Galerie Thomas Zander

Jousse Entreprise
A sculpture at Jousse Entreprise


Officielle is the cooler little sister to FIAC. It’s a fair featuring galleries who’ve found success working with emerging artists. Held at Les Docks – Cité de la Mode et du Design, it’s not very easy to reach but definitely worth the trip if you’re able! Take a walk to La Maison Rouge after visiting this fair.

OFFICIELLE Entrance - Les Docks

James Viscardi
A work by James Viscardi at Last Resort Gallery

Brand New Gallery
A work at Brand New Gallery

Damien Deroubaix at Nosbaum & Reding
Damien Deroubaix, The Artist, 2015
Nosbaum & Reding

Paris Internationale

Paris Internationale was one of the most unique art fairs I’ve seen. The fair itself was held in a hotel particulier, which is basically a private townhouse, in a very posh district of Paris. It featured several young gallerists showing up-and-coming art from artists around the world. Moving through the decadent traditional interior spaces was quite surreal, especially as they were embellished by contemporary art!

Paris Internationale Fair

Art Élysées

Art Elysées was located near FIAC in tents along the Champs Elysées. Design Elysées was also adjacent to the fair and showcased much of the furniture and home accessories of the Parisian design scene.

Catherine Lopez-Curval

Catherine Lopez-Curval

Catherine Lopez-Curval

Catherine Lopez-Curval

Works by Catherine Lopez-Curval at Galerie Des Tuiliers

YIA Art Fair

YIA was hosted in Paris’ lovely gallery district, Le Marais, which is probably my favorite neighborhood to visit when I am in Paris. The fair was held inside the Carreau du Temple, a market built in 1863 that still holds many of the architectural elements of the period. Many of the gallerists at the fair held exhibition openings at their galleries shortly after the fair’s end for the day, which made it a great fair to visit in the late afternoon!

YIA Art Fair Galerie Valérie Lefebvre

Works at the booth of Galerie Valérie Lefebvre

October 23, 2015

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I’m an American photographer and writer based in Paris after living in New York for 7 years and then and spending a year and a half traveling. My work has been featured by the Paris and Nice Tourism Offices, Art Basel, and Refinery 29. Culture Passport is a place to share my travels and experiences in new places, with a focus on cultural attractions.

5 Comments Leave Yours

[…] between the madness that was FIAC, I did have a few rare moments of calm in the beautiful city of Paris — mainly to eat, take a […]


[…] the Sammlung Froehlich was quite the mission for me, but well worth it! I was still recovering from FIAC, didn’t understand the S-Bahn ticketing machine, and of course didn’t have enough cash […]


[…] have visited the Grand Palais a few times over the years, mainly for art fairs like FIAC and Paris Photo, and I’m always impressed by its grandeur. Here are a few photos from my […]


[…] birthday trip to Oslo and Berlin, visited three more major art fairs for work in France and Italy {1, 2, 3}, mourned with the world over the devastating Paris terror attacks, and finally took one last […]


[…] Paris every fall to set up a booth in the Grand Palais, where the fair is held. Having just been to FIAC a few weeks earlier, I felt good about knowing my way around the Grand Palais. It was my first […]


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