Doesn’t James Wagner have a photograph on his flickr account the ADAA (Art Dealers Association of America) could use as promotion for their fair? I grabbed the picture above from their site this afternoon, which appears to have been designed around the photo. As I recall, their website used a lot of the green prior to this new found love for orange. I’m not sure which version I dislike more.
It wasn’t design concerns however that brought me to the ADAA site, but rather their annual art fair, which opens to the public this Thursday at noon and runs through Sunday. Unlike last year, when both The Armory and the ADAA hosted their yearly fairs at the same time and everyone compared the two, this time around, the ADAA will fly solo; The Armory launching their fair next month. Hopefully, since the two events no longer compete at the same time, we’ll see fewer eyebrow raising comments from dealers the likes of Paul Kasmin, also a member of the association. Around this time last year he told artinfo, “The [ADAA] fair uptown is now the one that's going to have to find its way again. [The Armory Show is] bright, colorful and noisy, while uptown they've got smaller, quieter pictures and, to be honest, they're looking a little too quiet.” At the time, the Armory was probably getting much more press than the ADAA, so I suppose this inspired the comment, but having attended both, I can tell you, The Armory didn’t hold a candle to the strong fair the ADAA put together. I don’t see why fanfare should solicit observations from professionals involved in the organization that are so superficial in nature.
Coincidently, although I didn’t mention it last year, Matthew Marks displayed a beautiful and recent Jasper Johns watercolor on plastic at the fair, and while in Chelsea today, I noted two additional works on plastic by Johns, which were equally nice. At the time of my first viewing, I remember remarking on how incredible it was to see good work by an artist undoubtedly in his late
80’s or early 90’s 70’s, and while a lot of the exhibition looked like art made by artist past his prime, those two pieces, made exception to that. Perhaps we’ll see a little more of this kind of stuff at the fair this week.