Roger Pailhas Prize
Paying tribute to the Marseille-based gallerist, known for his daring and innovative booths within the most prestigious art fairs, Art-o-rama organizes since 2015 the Roger Pailhas Prize. Awarded since 2019 by a committee of collectors and art professionals, François Culioli, Josée Gensollen, Marc Gensollen, Hervé Lebrun, chaired by Benoît Doche de Laquintane and Sébastien Peyret, it rewards the best curatorial project of the fair.
Roger Pailhas inaugurated his first gallery in Marseille (Cours Julien area) in 1986 with a group show that gathered Daniel Buren, Gilbert Della-Nocce, Toni Grand, Jannis Kounellis, Sol Le Witt, Mario Merz, and Bruce Nauman. In 1990, he opened a second space in Paris with a solo show by John Knight. In 1996 the Marseille-based gallery moved to the Vieux-Port (old harbour central area) into a 1,000sqm space. He closed the Parisian gallery in 1998 and decided to focus on Marseille instead. In 1996 he created Art Dealers, an original contemporary art fair where he gathered, within the gallery’s space, 8 new international galleries each year.
Meanwhile, he participated in some of the most prestigious international art fairs such as Art Basel, Fiac, and the Armory Show, where he offered, with the complicity of his artists, among the most ambitious and adventurous booths. Samuel Keller himself said that Roger Pailhas’ booths inspired the Statement section of Art Basel. The gallery and Art Dealers ceased to exist when Roger Pailhas passed away in 2005.
2019 : VEDA, Florence, with Dominique White
2021 : Exo Exo, Paris, with Gaspar Willmann