History of the Graphic Arts Fair

The German-Dutch Graphic Arts Fair in Borken has been dedicated to artistic printmaking since 1988. This makes it an original among all trade fairs that have art on and from paper as their theme.

The founding

The first German-Dutch Graphic Arts Fair took place on June 4th and 5th, 1988 as part of the cross-border event series “Begegnungen – Ontmoetingen”. The idea of ​​a printmaking fair was developed in the cultural department of the Kreis Borken and politicians and the cultural scene responded immediately enthusiastically. The cross-border network and the friendships that had developed in and around the “German-Dutch Working Group Achterhoek – Westmünsterland” since 1961 were significantly involved in its founding. At that time, the intention to bring high-quality printmaking to an interested and willing audience was combined with the idea of ​​opening up new perspectives for everyone involved through cross-border exchange.

Development of the Arts Fair

Going into series after the first edition of the German-Dutch Graphic Arts Fair naturally fits the genre. To ensure quality, a jury was set up for the 2nd edition. The third Arts Fair took place in March and has had a permanent place in the region's event calendar ever since. Initially, more galleries and cultural institutions were involved, for example Kunst en Cultuur Overijssel, and in recent years regularly the Aldegrever Gesellschaft Münster and the Büchergilde Mainz. In 1990, Werner Gottsmann (Teltow-Seehof) was the first East German artist to take part, and since 2004 artists from the Berlin and Leipzig graphic scenes have been represented. The founding idea of ​​bringing artists and interested parties together is also reflected in the fact that graphics classes from universities have been present in Borken since 2007, giving the young artists the opportunity to face the audience in person.

The Graphic Arts Network

Artists are increasingly networking regional and nationally. From the beginning - before it became fashionable to call it that - the Graphic Arts Fair was the annual meeting of a German-Dutch Graphic Arts Network. The network has been visible on its website since 2018. The initiators of the network are the organizers of the Graphic Arts Fair: Stadt Borken, Kreis Borken and their partner Grafiekplatform VOG (NL), Kloster Bentlage GmbH with the Druckvereinigung Bentlage.

The text is an abridged and partially revised version of the text: 30 Folgen und kein Ende. Die Deutsch-Niederländische Grafikbörse – ein Netzwerk für die Kunst, Corinna Endlich und Britta Kusch-Arnhold, in: 30 Blätter – 30 Künstler – 30 Jahre Deutsch-Niederländisches Grafikbörse, Borken / Mainz 2017, S. 24-27. (ISBN 978-3-945751-83-1)