Armory Art Week is here and brings with it an explosion of pop up art options in New York City through March 6, 2016. For this year's art fair week in New York, there are at least 11 art fairs to choose from set in neighborhoods across Manhattan. For the full art fair list, visit our Ultimate Art Guide to the NYC Fairs of Armory Arts Week.
Meanwhile, we've put together a primer on what you should know for attending Armory Art Week 2016 in New York City.
1. Parties & Openings
Coinciding (and celebrating) the opening of the art fairs are benefit parties along with VIP receptions. Parties to know include The Art Show’s Gala Preview, benefiting the Henry Street Settlement, on Tuesday, March 1, 2016 from 5:30 to 9:30 p.m.; The Armory Party, benefiting MoMA, on Wednesday, March 2, 2016, at 8 p.m.; and Art on Paper’s Preview Party, benefiting the Brooklyn Museum, on Thursday, March 3, 2016, from 6 to 10 p.m.
Meanwhile, all the art fairs kick off with special opening events from Tuesday to Thursday nights. Check the websites of the individual fairs for details. Looking for free? The Vernissage for VOLTA is free and open to the public. It’s held on Wednesday night from 8 to 10 p.m.
2. When Do The Fairs Open?
Armory Art Week runs from Monday to Sunday, February 29 to March 6, 2016, with art programming taking place across all five boroughs in New York City. The art fairs open Tuesday through Thursday and remain open through Sunday. There are no fewer than 10 art fairs alighting in New York City. For the full list, click here for our Ultimate Fair Guide. Here’s a cheat sheet for when the fairs first open to the public:
Tuesday: SPRING/BREAK Art Show
Wednesday: Volta NY, The Art Show
Thursday: The Armory Show; Moving Image, Independent, Art on Paper, PULSE New York, New City Art Fair, Scope NY, Clio Art Fair.
3. Armory Fair Cluster: What’s Near & What’s Far
Art fairs during Armory Art Fair Week are dispersed around New York City. Still, there are clusters of fairs that make scheduling easier.
The Armory Show, the week's art fair centerpiece, is held Midtown West at Piers 92 & 94, located at 12th Avenue at 55th Street. Volta NY is next door on Pier 90 (at 50th Street). From there, Scope New York is a few blocks away at Metropolitan West Pavilion at 639 West 46th Street. The Art Show, presented by ADAA, requires a short trip uptown to the Park Avenue Armory at 643 Park Avenue at 67th Street.
Art fairs outside of this cluster begin at Midtown with SPRING/BREAK Art Show and end in Lower Manhattan with Art on Paper. Click here for our Ultimate Guide on the art fairs for all the fair's locations.
4. VIP Tickets to Unlock Fair Admission
Some VIP Tickets work harder than others. In general, VIP tickets allow entrance to opening parties and attendance to the fair throughout its run. VOLTA NY has teamed up with the following art fairs to grant VIP privileges to their fair: SPRING/BREAK Art Fair and PULSE New York. VIP status is also shared between The Armory Art Show and VOLTA NY.
Shuttles are offered by some of the art fairs to make navigating Manhattan easier. The Armory Show offers shuttles between its fair and VOLTA NY (at Pier 90), the Hudson Hotel (West 58th Street at 9th Avenue) and Hotel Americano (518 West 27th Street between 10th and 11th Avenues).
PULSE New York is running a shuttle between its fair and The Armory Show.
6. Hamptons Connections
Art on Paper gets the award for the highest concentration of Hamptons art and galleries during Armory Week. Expect to find Quogue Gallery (presenting a solo show of Arthur Pinajian) as well as Kathryn Markel Fine Arts and Lawrence Fine Art. In addition, look for familiar Hamptons names at SPRING/BREAK Art Show (Sara Nightingale) and Damien Roman (SCOPE NY).
7. Miami Heat
Turn around is fair play so expect to find a bit of Miami arriving in New York City. Highlights include Emerson Dorsch (PULSE NY); Art Vitam (Art on Paper); Mindy Solomon Gallery (VOLTA NY and Moving Image) and installations by Miami-based artist Frederico Uribe (Art on Paper New York) presented by NY-based Adeleson Galleries.
8. Performance Art, Special Projects & Installations
With so much art in exhibitor booths (and more art than can be processed in one visit for the larger fairs), it's easy to overlook or completely miss special projects, installations and performance art taking place in the fairs.
To point out just a few, keep your eyes open for Anne Spalter's site-specific installation Precession, made up of 3,000 square feet of digital wallpaper with installed computer painting prints and video art inspired by the New York City skyline at SPRING/BREAK; La Gabbia by performance artist Romina de Novellis staged at The Armory Show's Contemporary Section at Pier 94; the immersive (and fully working bar) Eulogy For The Dyke Bar by Macon Reed at PULSE New York (presented by Mackin Projects) and the colorful large-scale paper installation Rainbow by Beijing sculptor Li Hongbo installed in the East Lounge at Art on Paper New York (presented by Klein Sun Gallery of New York City).
9. Early Predictions: Fairs not to Miss
SPRING/BREAK Art Show is a winner for contemporary art, ADAA's The Art Show is strong in modern art and The Armory Show for both. Art on Paper is garnering excitement for its second New York edition. The inaugural show was a strong one and expectations are high for the second. Independent has a strong line up of galleries exhibiting contemporary art. VOLTA NY will be an interesting one with its emphasis on solo presentations and a move towards edgier contemporary art.
10. Get a Jump Start: View Art Online
With Artsy providing artwork on line for many of the fairs, it's easy to start exploring the art presented from the comfort of your home or office. Here's a list of the fairs offering art online at Artsy: The Armory Show, SPRING/BREAK Art Show, PULSE New York, Moving Image New York and Art on Paper New York.
Of course, viewing art virtually isn't the same as seeing it in person where nuances and the influence of the artist is easier to witness. Viewing art installed by a curator in concert with other art also provides insight in the art that's not easily replicated online.
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