If you’ve ever visited Governors Island, there’s a good chance you’ve been charmed by it. Only eight minutes by ferry from Manhattan and three from Brooklyn, the island feels like a world apart from the rest of New York City, with its old military buildings and green landscape. It’s also the home to some of New York’s most exciting cultural events, among them the Governors Island Art Fair. Hyperallergic is proud to be the exclusive media sponsor for the fair, which launches this Saturday, September 7.

Now entering its sixth year, the Governors Island Art Fair is New York’s largest independent exhibition. It features more than 100 exhibitors, among them individual artists, designers, galleries, and collectives, set up throughout the island. 4heads, the organizers of the fair, have chosen the best 100 exhibitors and given them each a room inside a historic building, in which to wreak havoc as they see fit.


The fair also includes a performance lab, where a different group will offer interactive experiences every day. You can imagine your ideal office, participate in a simulation of stylized cult experiences, and attend a panel of women from comedy, variety, and burlesque. Elsewhere on the island, there’s sculpture, food and drink, plus Fetè Paradiso, the antique Parisian carnival currently visiting New York. Why spend the day inside when you could spend it biking around and seeing art on Governors Island?

The Governors Island Art Fair is organized by 4heads, a New York arts organization that tailors its programs serve the under-resourced, attracting hidden culture and fostering community through collaborative expression. The fair takes place every full weekend in September, running September 7–29, and is open from 11 am to 6 pm. Ferries from the Battery Maritime Building in Lower Manhattan and Brooklyn Bridge Park’s Pier 6 in Brooklyn are free. Directions are available online.

Jillian Steinhauer is a former senior editor of Hyperallergic. She writes largely about the intersection of art...