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Archive for April, 2008

25th Apr 2008

Pulse NY 2008

Pulse New York was held a Pier 40 on the West Side Highway, from March 27 to March 30, 2008. After debarking from the shuttle from the Armory fair we walked through a public recreational facility, through a utilitarian park facility housing public toilets and other locked, closed doors, past a large playing field where teams of children were playing soccer and finally into a tent-like opening. Then down the long red corridor and into another room with a few informational booth, such as the one for the NYFA. Then another hall and suddenly — Lights! Booths! — and a large art fair! According the their pr, this year Pulse moved into a larger space, and I personally salute the ingenious people who found this huge, but probably comparatively inexpensive space and both imagined and then actualized its great possibilities for an art fair.

This article is brief and deals with what stood out so much that I actually remember it, aside from the unique entrance. There are some good artists and booths that deserve a mention, even a belated one.

I only mention what I like and always try to provide a link to the artist’s gallery. Since the reviews have remained on line (access the former ones through this menu link: http://www.ungravenimage.com/ArtTheoryShowsArticles.php) it serves to introduce artists and sometimes galleries as since my site is content rich, before the recent web host move my site and blog were ranked fairly highly by search engines. (more…)

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17th Apr 2008

Scope Art Fair — NYC 2008

For the sixth year Scope exhibited during the art fair season in NYC, from March 26-30, 2008. Their spot was in the Lincoln Center area, and since this fair cleverly opened earlier than the others, this was my first stop.

This year, according to their press release, Scope steps forward as an art-world leader of environmental awareness. This visually began at the entrance to the fair with a work by Guerra de la Paz, The Green Zone: Under the Banyan Tree (Daneyal Mahmood Gallery). Eco friendliness extended through other artists projects using recycled materials, to hybrid ZipCars that shuttled VIP patrons to using recycles papers and soy inks.

Scope is a lively friendly fair, exhibiting exciting new and emerging art cheek to jowl with more established work. It is fun to renew acquaintance with out of town – or country – galleries as well as visit in booths of NY based galleries to see what is newly featured. Galleries tend to be able to give artists a solo shows about every two years, but at fairs are likely to show the work of several artists. (more…)

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11th Apr 2008

Armory Art Show 2008

The 10th annual Armory show, NYC was held at Pier 94 from March 27-30. Only contemporary art was featured by the participating 150 galleries chosen by this year’s selection committee.

According to The Art Newspaper’s special fair edition, the sales held up well despite market jitters. The art fairs serve as places where top notch collectors come to see many new works and buy. This is one of the premier fairs in the world to see the best of contemporary art. As such this fair, along with some of the other fairs such as Scope and Pulse that ran concurrently, create a once-a-year survey of contemporary art that no museum, even with an unlimited budget could hope to duplicate.

Prior to attending, I had read various press releases and reports about the fair. I knew that some top galleries had been excluded by the fair this year. The NY Times article by Roberta Smith in weekend Arts sported the headline,” Smooth and Safe at Pier 94”. Generally, this years fair had few surprises and some of the galleries currently in Chelsea had better shows back home than in their booths. Ironically, looking back it seems to me that a few of the galleries missing this year had brought some of the best, cutting edge and thus press receiving work to the fair previously. Of course, the public has no idea what galleries were actually not included as we lack information as to who had applied.

If, as Rebecca Smith indicated some galleries held back the best work of their artists, possibly for Art Basel, others pulled out all the stops. Most galleries feature the works of many of their artists, while a few chose to focus on only one.

For me this year’s fair seemed to excel for works by Conceptual, especially Word artists. The art theory that I am founding, UnGraven Image is a next step from Word Art, so obviously I appreciate it. However, most of the mentions in the fairs and shows I have reviewed (and will, as I am also working on Scope and Pulse) have not covered Conceptual artists to the extent I do here. Much of the best work here just happened to be by these artists, perhaps due to the recent show at the Whitney of Lawrence Weiner’s work.

The Cheim and Read booth was an installation of Jenny Holzer’s work that was the best booth I have seen in any fair so far. Period. OK, I am a fan of Jenny Holzer’s, but exciting, powerful display was especially insightful for her work. I hope there is a way for the display to travel to museums or venues as being booth sized that is a viable idea. The booth was totally symmetrical. The blue and red scrolling light image works in the corners (two are visible in the photo below) were repeated in all four corners.) The small “benches” were carved marble to resemble monuments. (more…)

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