In its first-ever edition, the “Art Macao” mega-event was visited by over 16 million people, making it arguably the most visited art exhibition in the world, surpassing the “Musée du Louvre” in Paris, which receives some 10 million annual visitors.
That was the message left yesterday evening by the organizers of the event during a dinner to officially close Art Macao. The unprecedented art event in Macau began in May.
Hosting the dinner, Frederic Winckler, Chief Creative and Brand Officer of Melco Resorts & Entertainment, cited the staggering figure first mentioned by the Secretary for Social Affairs and Culture, Alexis Tam, to note the “incredible achievement.” Winckler insisted that the dinner was as a “celebration” of the event and not a traditional “closing.”
“If in the beginning, it looked difficult to achieve 16 million people, let us see what has been done,” said Winckler, going on to list as examples, “large exhibitions, performances, well-known artists from around the world and not only from around the world but also emerging talents from Macau.”
“Ten million people visit the ‘Louvre’ each year, which means that Art Macao had three times as many people seeing it than the ‘Louvre’ in Paris,” he added, extrapolating the full-year visitation of Art Macao. “Congratulations, this is an amazing result.”
For Winckler, more important than the total number of visitors is the fact that Art Macao had managed to show that this “is a city that is keen to be a platform for exchange and expression and that’s great.”
Just before Winckler, Tam had expressed his satisfaction with this first edition. The Secretary who oversees cultural matters said that Art Macao will return in a similar format next year.
For Tam, the “mega-event” that mobilized the six gaming concessionaires together with a large number of government departments and entities is a good example of how “art can connect people and create a new atmosphere in the city.” He said it contributed to the promotion of arts and culture-related tourism.
“We have seen the success of the activities and the attraction effect that caused in the tourism [sector],” said Tam, adding that the figures achieved “surpassed our expectations.”
“I hope in future we can continue with this effort to built Macau as an art brand,” said Tam.