Let The Art Fairs Begin!

by Art Fag City on March 5, 2009 · 3 comments Events

Pulse New York, 2008, Art Fag City, Paddy Johnson
Laurina Paperina at Pulse New York 2008. Image via: c-monster flickr stream.

New York City art fairs overwhelming you?  In addition to our Google art fair map posted late last week, I’m providing a list of fairs in the order we’re attending and why.

1. The Armory Show – International

Last year I thought the overall quality of art at Pulse was better than any other fair, but as the largest and fanciest New York fair we’re still going to the Armory first.  They also host the press preview earlier.  Rumor has it they were letting a lot of new galleries into the event due to a number of drop outs this year, but based on yesterday’s viewing, this hasn’t affected the look or feel of the fair at all.

2. The Armory Show – Modern

It’s only one pier over from the Armory so why not check out a hodge-podge of secondary market work?

3. Pulse

Located south of the Armory at Pier 40, Pulse is the largest invite-only contemporary art fair in the city.  Of course, though the fair shrank in size this year and they don’t seem to be touting the invite aspect of the show any more, its exclusivity may mean less than it used to.


Those smarter than us might see this fair third, since the Armory provides a shuttle bus directly over to its sister fair.  Not that there’s a specific draw to this per se — free transportation exists between Pulse, The Armory, Volta and Scope — but the Armory does a good job of pimping that particular ride as though there were no others.

Invite only and focused on the contemporary production of young artists, the quality of VOLTA exhibitors tends to be quite high.

5. Scope

Scope continues to bleed exhibitors due to their notoriously bad organizational methods and unfortunate affinity for loud, obnoxious art, but they usually manage to host one or two good booths.  Let’s hope they keep this up.

6. Fountain and Bridge

For viewers who love scrappy art.  Fountain hosts a number of Williamsburg galleries, and last year Bridge hosted a lot of contemporary Chinese galleries.  Typically worth attending for the “diamond in the rough”.

Previous post:

Next post: