Olympia arts fair reins returned to Clarion Events
20-Jul-10by Annie Byrne
Next summer’s Olympia fair is reverting to British management and organisation, with owner Clarion Events assuming control from US entrepreneur David Lester. The fair, which will run from 9 to 19 June 2011, will revert to a more traditional name; the Olympia International Fine Art and Antiques Fair, following Lester’s rebrand last year to the London International Fine Art Fair.Lester and his wife Lee Ann made their name by founding and successfully nurturing the Palm Beach fair in the US, which they sold to DMG World Media but bought back two years ago. Clarion turned to the Florida-based organiser to rejuvenate and galvanise the London fair with his own particular brand of showmanship.However there was widespread scepticism of his attempt to make this broadly-based showcase of the British antiques trade an international, upmarket extravaganza, according to the Antiques Trade Gazette.“We are focused on defining the position of the fair in the marketplace,” Clarion portfolio director Chris Gallon told the magazine.