I went to the Affordable Art Fair in NYC this weekend, and WHOA! — talk about amazing! It frankly blew me away. There were exhibitors from all over the world, and tons of up and coming artists were there to talk to you in person. All of the works were under $10,000, and the majority of the ones I saw were under $5,000, and some even under $1,000! Unbelievable. I took like SOOO many photos, but I attempted to group and categorize the ones I loved here.
1) HYPERCREATIVE MATERIALS.
HOLY COW. Looks like a remake of The Girl with the Pearl Earring, right? But you will NEVER guess what this piece is made of. IT BLEW MY MIND.
Look closer and see… it is actually thousands of little baubles, bits, and beads, and other found pieces, including…
…dinosaurs, LEGOs, fish, a baby, a sword (possibly from He-Man)… and no, your eyes are not fooling you. That is Spongebob squarepants, right there on your Vermeer. MAN, talk about creative! Why didn’t I go to art school!!! This was by Jane Perkins at London’s Will’s Art Warehouse.
And for other amazing materials….
Even from a distance I was entranced by the feeling of motion from this subtle wheel of color…
when I got closer, I realized this effect is created from the clever placement of hundreds of pieces of colored glass acting like prisms, so it would actually look different under different lighting, at night versus strong daylight, etc. This piece from artist Chris Wood at Byard Art (based in Cambridge, UK).
Similarly, this wheel of primary colors is actually made of an arrangement of colored acrylic tubing…
so the transparent parts make the colored rings overlap when viewed from different angles. I stupidly did not note the artist of this work, so sorry!
Speaking of crazy materials… you will NEVER guess what this is made of. (Yes, I know I’m repeating myself, but it’s really true.)
Don’t cheat, really take a guess. I thought it might be foam or something… wrong! Give up? It’s actually salt. No kidding. From artists Mastrangelo and Lawson at NYC’s Emmanual Fremin Gallery.
2) PAINT OVER SCREEN PRINTING.
I saw this technique again and again, and I just LOVED it. Kind of Andy Warhol, but I think the painting allows an extra level of creativity and artistic expression. Check these out:
This is Fabio Coruzzi’s I was in a Tram, it was about to Rain in Milan, from London’s Bicha Gallery. They told me he actually has three degrees: one in photography, one in printmaking, and one in painting, and all these talents are showcased in this and similar works that were on display.
Mike Chavez’s screenprint/paintings made me laugh out loud. When I met him at the event, he commented that art doesn’t always have to be so serious. Hear, hear.
The blood red scribbling on the print of the famous Marie Antoinette portrait feels young and a little irreverent. At the Evan Lurie Gallery (Carmel, IN).
3) UNBELIEVABLE COLLAGES
Collages were possibly some of my favorite moments of the entire fair. Here was an artist I just loved:
It’s modern, it’s ethnic, it’s got texture and text elements, it’s literally 3D, it’s got a geometric pattern I love, bright colors, etc, etc. Could look at this one again and again and never get bored. This is Art Institute of Chicago-trained Jill Ricci, showing at the Tria Gallery in NYC. I guess you can tell I’m a fan! You wouldn’t believe the price if I told it to you.
Somehow scraps of newspaper and a layer of epoxy look almost impressionist. From artist Molly Hills Perez.
4) CHEEKY STUFF
Lastly, I saw several pieces that just plain put a smile on my lips.
A bright pink, cable knit deer head. Who doesn’t want this? Pottery Barn could make a fortune if they mass-produced this. As it is, you have to get it from artist Rachel Denny at Portland Fine Art.
Cheeky and existential, what would Mark Zuckerberg say? From ArtScoutTV.com at NYC’s Galerie Swanstrom.
Dulce Pinzon‘s series Superheroes features normal people in normal situations dressed up in superhero costumes. This photo, showing an immigrant nanny, is comedic yet poignant.
Sunbursts of disco-ball-esque fireworks painted pointillism-style are juxtaposed against the strong silhouettes of cowboys. Like Clint Eastwood on acid, this is Casey Vogt’s Pill Poppers.
Hope you enjoy this! I loved the Affordable Art Fair, and it turns out they have them all over the place… I’m definitely going again!