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Posted inNews

Is it Time to Blow Up the Art Fair Model?

Occupy Museums thinks the art fair model needs to be reworked. Occupy Wall Street’s art offshoot has announced a new initiative, DebtFair, which seeks to radically deconstruct the commercial art fair. After essentially sunning themselves in a distant corner of Frieze New York last May, distributing flyers for Un-Frieze and other protest literature, the activists have decided to go for a more radical overthrow of the heavily commodified fair model. Whether or not this alternative has legs remains to be seen.

Posted inOpinion

Why Slate’s Takedown of the Art World Is Totally Wrong

As a longtime reader and admirer of Slate, I’ve often lamented the fact that there’s pretty much zero visual art content on the site (although, to be fair, they’re only one of a handful of culture publications that ignores the category, and their new photo blog is great). So I was excited when I saw they had published a piece about the art world and Art Basel Miami Beach yesterday — until I read it.

Posted inArt

WTF is… an Art Fair?

Okay, so, this week is New York City’s art fair week. This may sound like a carnival replete with Ferris wheels, clowns and cotton candy, but it’s not, at least in the literal sense. An art fair is like a carnival in that there’s a lot of excess noise, visual information and people yelling over each other. But an art fair is actually a clearinghouse for art works, a pow-wow of dealers, galleries, curators and collectors that’s part tribe meeting and part shopping mall. n the US, the major players are basically Art Basel Miami Beach, a sister fair of Art Basel founded in 2002 occurring annually every December, and New York City’s Armory Show, founded in 1994 and taking place in March.

Posted inArt

Art Basel Miami Beach 2010, Photos from the Day After

Brooklyn-based artist Jacob Krupnick had the opportunity to spend the day after the Art Basel Miami Beach fair closed inside the convention center dodging forklifts and documenting the breakdown of the fair. “It’s that rare moment when lots of valuables are at risk and in motion,” he told me over email. “The amazing piles of crates and packing materials make it hard to pin down what, exactly, an art piece is. (One forklift operator pointed at a stack of shipping containers he’d arranged, and said without sarcasm: ‘This is my art.’)” [PHOTO SERIES]