The Red Dot Fair wins points with me for having identified their building well. I’m not someone who works with a stellar sense of direction, so things like giant signs advertising the location of the fair go over well with me. As far as the quality of the sales event, I’ve seen better, I’ve seen Bridge Miami, and at least it improves upon that.
Markus Linnenbrink, Runthevoodoodown, 2006, Epoxy Resin on Wood 20.25 x 20 inches at Roy Boyd Gallery
The biggest complaint I have about this fair stems from the fact that there’s more painting than you can shake a stick at, and most of it isn’t any good. I gave up counting the number of artists in Red Dot who thought that every surface should be coated in Resin. A clear shiny surface appeals to me just as much as the next person, but viewing five hundred permutations of the technique just turns the work into Crate and Barrel art. Speaking of which, table cloth inspired canvases that feature stripes of paint dripping off the canvas seemed to be particularly popular. I observed no less than six galleries selling nearly identical work by different artists, none of it compelling in any way.
Left: Dave Choi, Hogar Collection, Right: Thomas Doyle, Pentimenti Gallery
The few sculptural works at the fair tended to stand out, though again, most of it fell flat. Dave Choi’s hilarious sculpture at Hogar Collection stood out as a clear winner, as did the work of Thomas Doyle, at the Philadelphia Gallery, Pentimenti. I particularly enjoy the use of the text “I’M NOT OKAY WITH THIS” on the billboard within one of Doyle’s domes, because while there are any number of interpretations of that sentiment, the idea that those within domes might not be all that cool with their placement adds a dimension to the piece that wouldn’t otherwise be there.
Unfortunately, other than this, I don’t have any deep thoughts on Red Dot. It’s a poor to mediocre fair that with only a few exceptions inspires little discussion.