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.
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
DirectorGlenn Lowry, philanthropist Agnes Gund and former Walt
Disney Co. President Michael Ovitz.
“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.
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
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
“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.”
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: