Whether you are an avid art lover or want to become an art collector, I think art fairs are usually excellent places to learn new things about contemporary art. Fairs are generally crowded, non-judgmental places where people can browse comfortably without being intimidated by the empty hallways and rooms of a gallery. Additionally, if you are unsure of your tastes and preferences, art fairs are also perfect spaces to take a crash course in visuals, spot trends and new talents and do some price research.
Art fairs have mushroomed in every corner of the world and Spring is generally an art season bursting with discoveries. I edited this entry and choose the art fairs that I think are worth exploring this Spring starting as of today and continuing for the next two months.
Art Paris: Not that anyone really needs an excuse to go to Paris, but this beautiful and highly-curated fair that takes place in the breathtaking glass-doomed roof of the Grand Palais is worth the trip. This year the focus is on China but the 140 galleries that are exhibiting are mostly European. This fair opened yesterday and will run until Sunday the 30th. And if you cannot be in Paris, here there is an amazing virtual tour that you can use to visit each booth in the fair. Brilliant.
MIART: Milan is the contemporary art capital of Italy, so naturally it is the perfect host for this cool and cutting-edge fair. MIART is actually scheduled this year to happen at the same time as Art Paris – so it will run until this coming Sunday. I love that it has five very specific sections including one for established artists, one for emerging, one for art objects, one for solo installations, and my favorite, which is called THENow: an invitational section that establishes a face-off between an artist from an “older” generation and artist coming from a younger one.
SP-Arte: Although I’m not sure how many more events Brazil can take this year without collapsing, SP-Arte is a fair that was born in 2005 and that keeps growing and strengthening the program and satellite events that surround the whole experience. Celebrating its 10th anniversary this year, the fair offers a great opportunity for Brazilians to see –and buy- works by some of the best international contemporary galleries and the artists that they represent, and for foreigners, an excellent glimpse into the Brazilian contemporary art scene, which is glitzy, fun, colorful and uplifting. From April 2 to 6, 2014
The AIPAD Photography Art Fair: I love photography very much. In fact, I have written about collecting and displaying photography a couple of times before. The AIPAD is a very cohesive show which is the longest running exhibition of fine art photography in the world (it started 34 years ago). The show pleases photography lovers and shows a vast selection with variations in the medium including contemporary, modern, and 19th century photographs as well as photo-based art and experimental new media. From April 10 to 13, 2014
Silicon Valley Contemporary: Oh, Silicon Valley now wants to collect art too? Apparently so, since the inaugurural edition of the first contemporary art fair in the region promises to be a space where art and technology will come together in ways that we have never seen before. From April 10 to 13, 2014
Frieze New York: The brainchild of Amanda Sharp that started in London 11 years ago has now a very spectacular New York sister which will open its third edition this coming May. I have seen the past two fairs, and I must say that it is pretty impressive. The fact that a massive and impeccable structure can be erected and then disassembled in such a short period of time is by and in itself worth the visit to Randall’s Island. Not to mention the very tight selection of international galleries and the ample hallways that for some reason never feel crammed. From May 9 to 12, 2014
Art Basel Hong Kong: The mother of all art fairs, Art Basel, has now a second child who is about to turn three: a Chinese reinterpretation of the mega-successful European and North American experiences that the Swiss organizers created in 1970 and 2002, respectively. Of course, the HK version, although very international, has a strong regional angle bringing together under one roof some of the best Asian galleries. From May 15 to 18, 2014.
artMRKT San Francisco: For a city with so many good museums and so much culture, it’s surprising that San Francisco doesn’t have many more art fairs. However, artMRKT doesn’t disappoint and has a very good selection of West Coast Galleries. The location right on the marina’s historic waterfront definitely adds to the experience. From May 15 to 18, 2014