This week marks an annual art summer tradition – the arrival of The Hamptons art fairs. There are three art fairs presented in The Hamptons each summer: Art Hamptons, Art Southampton and Market Art + Design. To unravel the fairs behind the names, here is what you need to know about attending art fairs in The Hamptons in 2016.
1. Art Hamptons has already come and gone.
Now under a new art fair producer, Urban Expositions, Art Hamptons moved its annual July fair to June 23 – 26, 2016. The fair was presented on the same private estate in Bridgehampton where it was held in 2015. Click here to see scenes from their VIP Opening and here for "Seven Things to Know about Art Southampton." Expect the same time frame for 2017.
2. Arriving this week are Market Art + Design and Art Southampton.
Market Art + Design will be held from July 7 – 10, 2016 (Thursday to Sunday). Art Southampton presents a day longer and is held from July 7 – 11, 2016 (Thursday to Monday). Market Art + Design is located on the Bridgehampton Museum grounds, 2368 Montauk Highway, Bridgehampton, NY 11963. Art Southampton is located at Nova's Ark Project, 30-60 Millstone Road in Water Mill, NY 11976.
3. Both fairs hold Opening Receptions on Thursday, July 7, 2016.
This year it’s possible to attend both as the art fairs are only separated by a few country lanes or Hamptons back roads, although they’re bound to be traffic logged. Market Art + Design holds its VIP Preview Party from 6 to 10 p.m. Access to the Preview begins at 6 p.m. for holders of VIP and Patron Passes. Click here for details. Art Southampton holds its Platinum VIP Preview from 6 to 7:30 p.m. for Platinum VIP Cardholders and a VIP Preview from 7:30 to 10 p.m. for VIP cardholders. The VIP Preview benefits the Parrish Art Museum and Southampton Hospital. Click here for details.
4. Market Art + Design Returns to their Roots and Reclaims the grounds of the Bridgehampton Museum.
Returning for its sixth edition of its art fair, find the fair along Main Street (also known as Montauk Highway and Route 27) in Bridgehampton. There are two entrances: one along Main Street (with a longer walk to the pavilion entrance) and another on Corwith Avenue, across the street from the Dan Flavin Institute.
5. Art Southampton Returns to Nova’s Ark Project to present its fifth edition.
By now, the sight of Nova’s elliptical house, towering sculptures, grazing sheep and sleek horses set in the distance of the tented white art fair pavilion is a familiar one. Nova’s Ark Project is a perfect setting for an art fair. Find it at 60 Millstone Road at the intersection with Scuttlehole Road, Water Mill, NY 11976 at the border of Bridgehampton. Want a preview of the grounds? Click here to discover some of the sculptures Nova is known for as well as works newly unveiled in 2013.
6. Art Southampton is the larger art fair with Market Art + Design expanding for 2016.
Art Southampton traditionally is the largest of the trio of Hamptons art fairs. This year is no different. They present 66 galleries or art dealers exhibiting contemporary or modern art. Click here for the exhibitor list. Market Art + Design features 50 galleries or art dealers along with a focus on jewelry design. There are five collections presented in the "jewelbox" representing Palm Beach, Los Angeles, Beverly Hills, New York and Santa Barbara. The number of galleries represents an increase from prior years presenting with the design focus. Click here for the exhibitor list.
7. If you’re looking for Art Talks and Panels, Art Southampton is the better bet.
Art Southampton has a steady schedule of talks from 2 p.m. to 4:45 p.m. on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Topics focus mostly on art as investment and managing an art collection. Click here for the full schedule. Highlights include a panel on the current state of the art market hosted by Phillips, a New York Academy of Art Cocktail Reception and a discussion on photorealism.
8. Market Art + Design has an Artist-Centric Vibe with a Dash of Brooklyn hip
At this point, it could be a matter of debate on whether Brooklyn is better known for its fantastic and diverse food offerings or as a known magnet for artists and art. Based in Brooklyn, Market Art + Design harnesses both sides for its 2016 art fair. Expect to find traces in the VIP Reception. Further, Food & Drinks throughout the run of the fair bring a range of Brooklyn gourmet food and drink through Bon Chovie and Stand Coffee, both known for their contributions to Brooklyn Flea's Smorgasburg, along with Fort Defiance and CoCo & Co. of Brooklyn.
The artist-centric part arises from site-specific installations located throughout the art fair and its grounds. Artists spotlighted include Alfredo & Isabel Aquilizan (Sundaram Tagore Gallery); Robin Kang (Jennifer Ford Art); Fitzhugh Karol and Rachel Urkowitz (De Chiara Projects). Bridgehampton artist Hector Leonardi studio is opened for a special Studio Visit on Sunday, courtesy of Walker Waugh Art.
9. Celebrities & Fanfair will Flock to Art Southampton.
Art Southampton has been known to draw celebs to its VIP Openings. This year, the fair has a line up of its own, courtesy of its presenting galleries. Shark Tank host and photographer Kevin O'Leary, academy award winner and artist Adrien Brody and actress Brooke Shields will all host special events at the art fair. Art Southampton wouldn't be the same without artist Kevin Berlin presenting a performance piece flocked by beautiful models. This year, the girls (and Kevin) unveil a new line of designer top hats at the Opening.
10. I don't have a car. How can I get there?
For NYC dwellers, Market Art + Design is three steps away from the Bridgehampton Jitney stop. It's also a long block away from the Bridgehampton station of the LIRR. To attend Art Southampton, start with either option and then call a local cab to get you the rest of the way. FYI: Uber isn't available in The Hamptons. For those with a car, both art fairs offer on-site parking or parking nearby.
11. Which is better?
There's not a chance we're weighing in on this one. Luckily for Hamptons art fair goers, all three fairs have distinct identities with collectible art found at each of them. Both the art fairs presenting this week are known for the quality of their exhibitors and the art presented. It's now an established part of the Hamptons art scene to assess and debate "How were the fairs?" after they close. To be part of the conversation, you have to be there.
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