Governors Island Art Fair (GIAF) opens its 11th edition Labor Day Weekend, featuring a diverse range of emerging, lesser-known and mid-career artists that are both national and international. Opening Saturday, September 1, 2018, GIAF presents the work of hundreds of artists installed in eight historic homes on Colonels Row on Governors Island in New York. The art fair continues through September 30, 2018 and is open weekends only.

Each exhibiting artist is given an entire room or connective space to present their work. Presenting either immersive installations or mini-exhibitions, the dedicated space results in a fair where visitors can experience the distinct approach and techniques by each artist.

GIAF is presented by 4heads, an artist-run organization which aims to connect emerging artists with the local community. Founded in 2008, GIAF was among the first major art events to take place on Governors Island. Each year, GIAF presents the work of up to 100 artists that have selected through an open call and jurying process.

“As more and more alternative spaces and galleries dedicated to emerging artists are forced to close in the current market climate, we see GIAF is ever more essential," stated 4heads co-founder Nicole Laemmle. "As a group of artists ourselves, we know firsthand how difficult it can be to find opportunities to show work and have meaningful engagement with a range of audiences. GIAF has come to be known as a space to discover, where each year the diversity of artists surprises, inspires, engages, and challenges.”

4heads co-founder Antony Zito offered, “When we first started showing on Governors Island, we were one of the only arts organizations to see the value and interest of occupying the many historic spaces on the Island—breaking out of the white cube and showing our artists in rooms that were frayed, and a little unwieldy, and yet offered a compelling and unexpected context and platform. We are excited to see the growing interest in the Island as an arts locale and look forward to building new partnerships and opportunities for our participating artists and for the public, so that we can continue to bring new artistic voices and concepts to the fore—evening the playing field and giving primacy to emerging, mid-career, and little-known artists.”

Exhibiting artists for the 2018 edition were selected by 4heads co-founders Laemmle, Zito and Jack Robinson. Over 800 proposals were received and artists accepted are a mix of returning artists and those who have never exhibited with the art fair before. There is no fee for artists to exhibit and 70% of art sales go directly to the artists.

Looking ahead to opening day, 4heads offered six highlights for visitors to put on their radar:

Pennsylvania-based artist Samuelle Green will create a site-specific, immerse installation for GIAF. Green constructs her environments from thousands of hand-rolled paper cones, which when combined reference the complex but often overlooked forms found in nature such as beehives, birds’ nests, and spider webs. By recasting these forms into oversize scale, Green encourages visitors to reconsider the natural world in a new way.

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"Paper Caves" by Samuelle Green, 2017

"Paper Caves" by Samuelle Green, 2017. Installation Detail, Paper, Wire. 2200 sq ft installation. Courtesy the artist and Governors Island Art Fair.

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Irish artist Emma Louise Moore will exhibit her most recent body of work where she explores the ways ethical consciousness gets pushed aside in everyday choices and the impact those decisions have on the environment and human interactions. For GIAF, Moore plans to create a false wall and carve recognizable forms and texts into its surface. Inset into the created voids will be dramatic silicone figurative sculptures.

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"Worth It" by Emma Louise Moore, 2018. Silicone, Human Hair, Polymer teeth, Painted eyes, Mixed media. 35'' x 35' x 6''. Courtesy the artist and Governors Island Art Fair.

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Connecticut-based artist Benjamin Quesnel will present recent works inspired by an abandoned mail truck found in the woods of northern Connecticut. Upon discovery, the vehicle contained a box of undelivered mail from 1982. Letters that never reached their destinations inspired Quesnel to explore ideas around the messages that we send or choose not to share, and ones that we want to express but that are never received or understood by their intended recipients. The truck will be installed on the lawn in front of Colonels Row, with some of the original letters available for the public to read. Visitors are encouraged to find connections with the authors and leave letters of their own behind for others to discover.

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"Undelivered" by Ben Quesnel, 2018 (ongoing project). Found mail truck, wood, donated letters. 73''x86''x158''. Courtesy the artist and Governors Island Art Fair.

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Brooklyn-based painter Jake Scharbach art is shaped by his childhood in a small town in Washington state. For GIAF, Scharbach will present several new paintings, which explore the creation and materialization of symbols as a means of analyzing contemporary cultural values. The paintings create contradictions and conflicts between history and contemporarily, as well as our personal ideals and perspectives and the reality of social constructs.

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Jake Scharbach 2017

"Students confront national police during a 2011 protest against the Chilean educational system." (National Institute for Human Rights) & "Parthenon Sculpture, Centauromachy, Classical Greek, Pheidias 447BC- 438BC." (The British Museum) by Jake Scharbach, 2017. Oil on Canvas, 54” x 54”. Courtesy the artist and Governors Island Art Fair.

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Irranian artist Moeinedin Shashaei will create an installation constructed from casts of the mouths of the people with whom he’s had in-person conversations since moving to New York City in 2014. The work explores and critiques contemporary forms of communication, including the advent of technology seems to create distance between people, who find themselves isolated, incapable of speaking and forming community.

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"Untitleds" by Moeinedin Shashaei 2017

"Untitleds" by Moeinedin Shashaei, 2017. Cast cement. Courtesy the artist and Governors Island Art Fair.

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New York-based artist Pasakorn Nontananandh will present the interactive digital installation Collective of Time Being. The installation joins pieces of the artist’s personal history and memories with the actions and movements of the visiting public, captured in real-time through the use of Kinect sensor devices. Together, the images from the artist’s memory and the movements of the audience bend and confuse time.

The presentation of Nontananandh’s work is part of an ongoing partnership between 4heads and the School of the Visual Arts, providing young artists with an opportunity to engage with other working artists and showcase their work outside of the context of student exhibitions. Graduating SVA students are able to apply with their thesis projects, and go through the same jurying process as the other fair participants.

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"Collective of Time Being" by Pasakorn Nontananandh 2018

"Collective of Time Being" by Pasakorn Nontananandh, 2018. Interactive installation, 96" x 204" x 216" (H x W x L). Courtesy the artist and Governors Island Art Fair.

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About 4heads

4heads is a nonprofit arts organization run by artists for artists. It was launched in New York in 2008, when Nicole Laemmle, Jack Robinson, and Antony Zito, who are working artists themselves, saw an opportunity to create a platform that would serve emerging artists and the local community through exhibitions, education programs, and artistic collaborations.

Its diverse slate of initiatives includes the Governors Island Art Fair, Portal art fair, arts-education initiatives for underserved communities, and a summer Artists in Residence program on Governors Island. 4heads is committed to shedding new light on hidden culture and bringing new life to unexpected and unique spaces across New York City.

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Governors Island

Governors Island. Courtesy of 4heads.org.

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Visiting Governors Island

Governors Island is accessible by ferries from Lower Manhattan and Brooklyn. Ferries depart from the Battery Maritime Building at 10 South Street and Brooklyn Bridge Park Pier 6 on Saturdays, Sundays, and Labor Day. Ferries cost $2 round trip for adults and children 12 and older. Children under 12, NYCID holders and Governors Island members ride for free; senior citizens’ fares are half price.

Morning ferries are free for everyone and depart at 10, 11 and 11:30 a.m. from Manhattan and 11 and 11:30 a.m. from Brooklyn. No surcharge for bicycles. For schedule and information, visit http://govisland.com .

NYC Ferry also stops at Governors Island Pier 102 on Saturdays and Sundays via the East River and South Brooklyn Route. For more tickets, schedule and more information visit http://www.ferry.nyc/.

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BASIC FACTS: Governors Island Art Fair opens on Saturday, September 1, 2018 and continues on view throughout September 2018. It is open from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays only. Admission is free. Exhibition catalogues are available for purchase for $20. For further information contact info@4heads.org or visit www.4heads.org.

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Copyright 2018 Hamptons Art Hub LLC. All rights reserved.

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