One of the most difficult things to evoke in an art show is a snapshot of a culture. On the other hand, when I write about zines, I find it difficult to separate the object itself from the ephemeral culture that surrounds it. In Samizdat: The Czech Art of Resistance, 1968-1989, curator Daniela Sneppova brings American viewers in to the heart of a print-based resistance.
Today marks the first (and only) full week of the world’s first online-only art fair. Ending on January 30, the VIP Art Fair has already begun to make waves. How is the fair fairing? Well, visitors are having mixed results. Due to heavy traffic the fair’s website has been loading slowly, harshing the buzz on a big opening weekend. You think the oldsters on dial-up will stand for that? Art Review reports that VIP Art Fair might be stealing your email address. Critics and gallerists complains about the molasses-like speeds. I complain about the Tweet-share button. Here’s a post-weekend guide to the VIP Art Fair, including my own initial impressions.
When the VIP (Viewing in Private) Art Fair kicks off this Saturday January 22, there won’t be mad dash of collectors behind the gates, ready to snap up any work on view. The only crush might be an overloaded server or a long login time as patrons struggle to sign in. VIP marks the first digital-only commercial art fair: prospective buyers will simply visit the fair’s website and virtually peruse galleries’ wares for the event’s duration, through January 30. Founded by James Cohan Gallery, directed by Noah Horowitz and Stephanie Schumann and featuring 138 galleries from 80 different countries, of every magnitude from Marianne Boesky to Winkleman Gallery, the VIP Art Fair is a uniquely expansive event. But it’s also not as different as it initially appears.
In Charles LeDray’s workworkworkworkwork (that’s five in total) exhibition at the Whitney, the artist has created “MENS SUITS” (2006-2009), a replica of the shop floor of a thrift store in miniature. But this is no mini train set; the shop is actually somewhere between life size and tiny. Check out this video with Whitney curator Carter Foster for a peek into LeDray’s strangely scaled world.
The Metropolitan is really hitting hard with its new media efforts lately, coming out with an interesting project in conjunction with its Lod mosaic exhibition, as well as a new presentation called “Connections,” an online series of photo slideshows with audio featuring museum staff giving short presentations of pieces in the museum collection that fascinate them, based on a particular theme or idea. The videos are fun insights into the personalities of staff and the collection, but they could go deeper into the art objects that they present.