A good art fair doesn’t need a gimmick, it need only be a selection of galleries that give an indication of new trends and innovation in the art world. Scope and the Armory failed on this front, Pulse did not. The reason is this: The galleries exhibiting represent work that is a viable alternative to what is seen in Chelsea (even if a few of them are actually located there).
If Pulse gives us any indication as to what’s hot in the art world, it would appear to be Houston. Ironically enough, The Whitney Biennial, also suggests this is the case, given the most challenging work by a long shot in that show is that of the Texas artists collective Otabenga Jones & Associates.
Among the many stand out booths in this show, Machey Gallery, and Finesilver Gallery of Houston presented some of my favorite work in the show. Machey Gallery, which lucky for us, was one of the 13 included through the “Impulse” a new initiative whereby through an application process, solo and group projects, had the best work I had seen at all of the art fairs together. The artists intention with these works was to soften instruments of violence by coating everything in a plush foam. The result is visually stunning. The sculptures themselves are recall the light touch of a Richter painting, and though the success varies from piece to piece, there really isn’t a dud in the bunch.
Finesilver Gallery was also another fine booth that hails from Houston. I am posting a photo that I took of Mark Flood’s work, but all cogent thoughts on the work have vanished due to the amount of time I have spent either in front of art or a computer screen this weekend. I may not have seen so much art that I puked this weekend, but I am literally unable to look at my desk top any longer. So let this serve as my vacation notice. I’ll be back in a couple of days, when staring at a computer no longer feels like the final stages of glaucoma.
PS: I would like to announce that James Wagner has much better camera than I do. Well, that or he is a much better photographer than I am (which is entirely possible). If you want to see good pictures of Scope, you should look visit his site.