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February 19, 2009

ADAA Art Fair Opened last night.. in the Eye of the Storm.

ADAA Art Fair Opened last night.. in the Eye of the Storm. The 21st ADAA Art Show at the uptown 67th Street, Armory.

Arthur_rothstein_Dust_Storm_1936 So last night was the big daddy of NYC art fairs.. and for the first time in several years, MAO didn't attend last nights preview party for the ADAA art fair.  Mostly cause we didn't want to waste the money time and be around lots of grumpy people bitching  saying how bad the economy has become. We listen to that all day long in our office!  

Well, it sounds like a lot more of the same for this art fair. Slow gallery sales..being met with collectors questioning these super high prices while looking for bargains.

(photo by Arthur Rothstein, "Fleeing a dust storm". Farmer Arthur Coble and sons walking in the face of a dust storm, Cimmaron County, Oklahoma. April, 1936,Library of Congress)

Plus, all us NYC Wall Street fat cat types have been putting in very long office hours the last 2 years, so taking time out to attend high attitude art fairs is not exactly a major priority for most people!

Anyway.. it doesn't sound like we missed much. We've been told everything will still be there (unsold) on Saturday afternoon when we have time to check out the ADAA art fair. 

Geeeze..is it just MAO.. or is this country starting to feel like it's in a depression already?

Here's a report by Bloomberg's Katya Kazakina.

------------------------------------------------

Art Show Opens in N.Y. With Less Hedge-Fund Money for Picasso
2009-02-19 04:56:23.637 GMT


By Katya Kazakina
     Feb. 19 (Bloomberg) -- At the Art Show last year, dealer
Richard L. Feigen offered an $8.5 million Pablo Picasso still
life. This year, he’s highlighting less expensive art, including
a $90,000 purple teapot painting by Georges Braque.
     “The guys with the bonuses and hedge funds won’t be
throwing money around,” he said. “There are a lot of things at
lower price levels than in the past.”
     The opening gala for the annual fair at the Park Avenue
Armory in Manhattan proceeded last night without its sponsor, the
bankrupt Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc., and with the expectation
of fewer sales than last year.
     Last night’s benefit for social services agency
Henry Street
Settlement
felt muted compared with the frenzied atmosphere of
the past three years, when collectors rushed in to snap up
multimillion dollar artworks, which include paintings, drawings,
photographs and sculpture.
     Among those who checked out the fair, which runs through
Sunday, were Donald Marron, chief executive officer of buyout
firm Lightyear Capital LLC, Stephen Schwarzman, CEO of
Blackstone
Group
LP, tennis player John McEnroe,
Museum of Modern Art
Director
Glenn Lowry, philanthropist Agnes Gund and former Walt
Disney Co. President Michael Ovitz.

                            First Lap

     “It’s our first lap,” said New York collector Jeff Grant,
who was with his wife, Madeline. While several works caught their
eye, they were not in a rush to buy.
     “Before we make a decision we do our homework,” he said.
“It’s got to be right.”
     Several dealers among the 70 with booths reported meager
sales or none at all. Patrons -- the women wearing large jewels
and the men dressed in suits -- spent as much time eating thumb-
size vegetable dumplings, Peking duck in scallion pancakes and
pulled pork sandwiches as they did perusing the art.
     “Everyone is paralyzed,” said dealer Per Skarstedt. “It
has to be either rare or inexpensive or both.”
     Skarstedt Gallery sold only one work: a photograph by
Cindy
Sherman
priced at $600,000. An $800,000 car hood by
Richard
Prince
and a $2.1 million “Mao” by Andy Warhol were still
available by the end of the evening. So was a striking, orange-
hued painting of a stripper “Cleaning the Pole” (2000) by
Marlene Dumas. The work’s asking price is $1.8 million, almost
double the amount it fetched just four months ago at
Phillips de
Pury
& Co.’s auction in London.
     Among the unsold high-end works for sale are Picasso’s 1906
gouache of his mistress Fernande Olivier. Acquavella Galleries is
asking $6 million for it.

                          Freud Etching

     Acquavella, which represents Lucian Freud, the most
expensive living artist at auction, also is selling one of his
2007 etchings for $45,000.
     Feigen’s most expensive item is a $2 million white canvas by
Lucio Fontana. His next most expensive item is a $550,000
Paul
Klee
painting.
     The show’s organizer, the
Art Dealers Association of
America
, said it’s expecting attendance to remain as strong as
last year despite a dismal global economy and a plummeting art
market.
     “We all know the days of wild sales when booths were sold
out within 20 minutes -- that era is over,” said Linda Blumberg,
the association’s executive director, adding that “the first-
rate work and smaller, more intimate atmosphere of the fair will
accrue to our benefit.”

                          Customer Appeal

     As collectors retreat and many galleries have reduced staff
or closed outright, the ADAA has encouraged participants to
appeal to customers in a more creative way.
     “Ten, 15 years ago, people would have had their inventory
on the walls,” said Roland Augustine, president of the ADAA.
“I’ve encouraged member-dealers to think more about the
aesthetics and the curatorial approach. I think it serves the
artist and the gallery better.”
     As a result, 24 dealers are focusing on the work of a single
artist, up from 18 last year.
     PaceWildenstein gallery is exhibiting gouaches by the late
minimalist artist Sol LeWitt. Made over three decades, the works
show snaking, overlaid basic washes of red, yellow, blue and
black. Ranging in price from $40,000 to $200,000, the pieces were
still available last night.
     “This particular fair is one of the best barometers of the
art world,” said Matthew Armstrong, curator of Marron’s
collection. He bought nothing.

      The Art Show runs through Sunday at the Park Avenue Armory,
Park Avenue at 67th Street. Admission is $20. Information:
http://www.artdealers.org.

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I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my

first comment. I don't know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I

will keep visiting this blog very often.

Miriam

http://www.craigslistguide.info

ADAA the galleries do NOT need to 'curate' shows. what people want is to see INVENTORY and lots of it...

the whole notion of selecting a few things... is insulting to the collectors. It is like saying. this is how you should be thinking, and we need to show you...it is condescending.

get with the program. people are really SHOPPING

but if it is 'curated' it's hard to 'shop'.

People want to browse, to see as much as possible. Certainly the art should be attractively positioned --well spaced, not cluttered. but curated??/ no, no. no.....

Bonnie Kagan
Kagan Fine Art
115 East 92nd St
New York, NY

I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would

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Miriam

http://www.craigslistguide.info

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The comments to this entry are closed.