Silvie Seidlitz, born in 1953 in Toggenburg (St. Gallen), forged a career in commodities trading for which she travelled extensively, living in Moscow, Hong Kong, Beijing, Sydney and Geneva. While based in Moscow, she developed a knowledge and love of Soviet Art. Following this, she moved to Asia, where her passion for Chinese contemporary art was ignited. In the late 80’s and 90’s, she was a pioneer in bringing contemporary artists to the public eye, generating the attention and admiration they deserved. Many great friends and connections forged throughout this exciting time and to this day, she still maintains these ties. Her passion for Chinese art has never diminished.
1. So tell us Silvie, when did you start Art Alliance?
2. Who do you owe your success to as curator?
My gut, my instinct.
3. “Art” for you is…
4. Why did you specialise in Chinese contemporary art?
After living in China for 15 years, a benchmark was established that I never got rid of.
5. Why choose Zurich instead of a bigger, more cosmopolitan city within Europe where Chinese Art is more known, moreover appreciated?
Switzerland is in fact home to many serious collectors. Zurich in particular has a high standard of living; it’s manageable due its size and, best of all, it’s located in the heart of Europe. I, who loves to travel – makes it the ideal place to live and do what I do.
6. What is more important to you – the client, the artist or all the above? Why?
Both. If there is no artist there is no client or if there is no client the artist has no life. In the end, my true mission is to sell art because you love what you see in the artistry, not what it’s worth. It’s all about heart.
7. What do you enjoy doing during your spare time?
Travelling and enjoying the company of great friends.
8. Where would we find you in Switzerland?
Mostly in Zurich as I live here. At museum events or gallery openings. At night, you would either catch me at a funk or jazz concert, or having a nice chilled beer with friends at the Toto.
9. And your recommended restaurants in Zurich?
Beyond for Chinese, Bimi for Japanese, Kropf for Schwiizer chuchi and Kronenhalle to see and be seen.
10. Your favourite country to visit?
Hmmmm… China of course!.
11. What can’t you live without?
Sublime food and great friends.
12. What magazines and/or websites inspire you?
The Economist, Vanity Fair, Artnet and the BBC.
13. Which food would we always find in your fridge?
Landjäger & Thomy Mayonnaise.
14. And finally, what’s your trademark item?