The Dia Art Foundation space in Chelsea, NYC has been transformed into the third Independent Art Fair between March 8-11. A little over 40 participating galleries exhibited in a space that felt like an amalgamation of a highly anticipated studio visit, a senior theses show by studio artists and curators, a gallery’s solo and group show and its private back room. Hence, the ambiance did not solely exude art fair. From a monetary standpoint and practicality, the open spaces at typical art fairs are divided into squares and rectangles to better quantify and maximize profit. The Independent Art Fair’s rogue flag is its relinquish of control. The imperfections of the floor, the ceiling, the white-painted brick, the rusted panes, the openness of space, the height of the ceiling and the incongruous temporary exhibition walls, made it feel less about commerce and more about art. This statement is not to discount their reasons for participating in selling artwork, rather, it is a key observation when comparing it with other art fairs.
Among the galleries that had the best use of space and that exhibited artwork that require a closer observation and more focused attention are The Approach (London, UK), Gavin Brown’s Enterprise (New York, NY), Campoli Presti (London, UK and Paris, France), Andrew Kreps Gallery (New York, NY), LABOR (Mexico City, Mexico), RaebervonStenglin (Zurich, Switzerland), Richard Telles Fine Art (Los Angeles, CA), Stuart Shave/Modern Art (London, UK), and 47 Canal Street (New York, NY).
Elizabeth Dee, Darren Flook, Matthew Higgs, Jayne Drost Johnson, and Laura Mitterrand collaborated on a strong and balanced art fair. Bravo! From two-dimensional to three-dimensional work and video—represented artists, gallery directors and owners should acknowledge their very apparent, hard work. This year, floors and ceilings are the new white walls. Hanging metal, ropes tied to a secure beam, floors acting as plinths taking on sculpture, walls taking the place of floors, and purposefully placed paintings and objects. Is John Chamberlain being missed and reincarnated with dented sheets of metal hung from ceilings? Is Carl Andre whispering artists? Is Robert Morris really at every angle and shadow? Are Allan Kaprow’s “happenings” inferring performative and installation-based work?
Here are some of the artwork at the art fair’s noteworthy booths that are not to be missed:
2nd Floor: The Approach, Bureau, Feature Inc., Freymond-Guth Fine Arts, gb agency, Herald St, David Kordansky Gallery, Maureen Paley, RaebervonStenglin, Supportico Lopez, The Third Line, VW (VeneKlasen Werner), Thea Westreich/Ethan Wagner, Publications + Three Star Books, and White Columns.
3rd Floor: Bortolami Gallery, Andrew Kreps Gallery, Labor Wilfried, Lentz Gió Marconi, MD 72, Meyer Riegger, The Modern Institute, Murray Guy, Neue Alte, Brücke Sprüth Magers Berlin/London, Richard Telles Fine Art, Galerie Jocelyn Wolff, Alex Zachary, Peter Currie, and Galerie Susanne Zander.
4th Floor: 47 Canal, Balice Hertling & Lewis, Broadway 1602, Gavin Brown’s Enterprise, Campoli Presti, Creative Growth Art Center, Elizabeth Dee, Jack Hanley Gallery, Hotel International, Art Objects Galleries, McCaffrey Fine Art, and Stuart Shave/Modern Art.
Independent Art Fair
March 8-11, 2012
548 West 22nd Street & West Side Highway
Thursday March 8: 4 – 9pm
Friday March 9: 11am – 8pm
Saturday March 10: 11am – 8pm
Sunday March 11: 11am – 4pm