Now that the May auctions and Frieze Art Fair are over, many think the art world takes a break until the fall. While it’s true that summer is quieter and many galleries have (shorter) summer hours, there is still a lot to see and do – including going to any of the numerous gallery group shows. You can also incorporate art into your travels and summer reading, with or without WiFi. Below are some suggestions of how to enjoy art this summer.
1. If you are traveling, here are some art exhibition highlights:
Venice: The Biennale. Yes, the invitation-only preview and fabulous parties have passed, but the art is on view until November 22nd. And now that the see-and-be-seen of the art world have left, you can actually see everything.
Havana: The Biennial, May 22nd – June 22nd. With relations thawing between Cuba and the United States, many US art groups are attending this year’s Biennial. The reports thus far are mixed, but Havana is a magical city to visit, regardless.
Vienna: Drawing Now: 2015 at the Albertina, May 29th – October 11th. This show is a fascinating look at what drawing means or can mean today. It takes place 40 years after the Drawing Now show that the Albertina mounted jointly with MoMA and will become a series at the museum shown at irregular intervals.
London: Agnes Martin at Tate Modern, June 3rd – October 11th. This retrospective, the first since the artist’s death in 2004, will be traveling, but it is a must-see if you are in London before it closes.
Paris: Anish Kapoor at Versailles, June 9th – November 1st. Kapoor is the latest contemporary artist exhibiting in the gardens and on the terraces of the Chateau de Versailles. The contrast of his works to the formal gardens can be both beautiful and jarring. Let me know what you think!
And, of course, if NYC is part of your summer, you must see the new Whitney Museum.
2. If you haven’t had your fill of art fairs, there are plenty to take in this summer. I will be attending the following four fairs and would be happy to guide you through any of them:
Art Basel, June 16th – 21st, Basel, Switzerland. This marks the fair’s 46th edition in Basel (as compared to the now more popular fair in Miami, which will have its 14th edition in December). It is widely considered the best contemporary art fair of the year, but there are very few parties, so only go if you are truly interested in the art.
And three art fairs in the Hamptons are changing locations this year:
Art Hamptons, July 2nd – 5th, Private Estate Grounds Lumber Lane Reserve, Bridgehampton. This was the first fair in the Hamptons and has the most local feel.
Market Art + Design, July 9th – 12th, Fairview Farm at Mecox, Bridgehampton. This year’s edition is adding design, which is a new trend that I expect to continue.
Art Southampton, July 9th – 13th, Nova’s Ark, Bridgehampton. This fair is brought to us by the Art Miami folks and is thus the most established of the bunch.
3. If you don’t want to leave your hammock but still want to learn about art, I recommend these books:
The Value of Art: Money, Power, Beauty, by Michael Finlay. How art acquires value and what it means to the various players in the art market is the focus of this book. Finlay offers an insider’s look at the art market along with some worthwhile advice on how to navigate your way through.
The Supermodel and the Brillo Box: Back Stories and Peculiar Economics from the World of Contemporary Art, by Don Thompson. This book also examines the art market, but with a little more celebrity and scandal. It follows Thomson’s 2008 bestseller The $12 Million Stuffed Shark, which is also a good read, but keep in mind that $12 million was considered a lot of money for a work of contemporary art in 2008!
The Art of Forgery: Case Studies in Deception, by Noah Charney. I am hopeful that none of you will encounter a forged work, but this book is fascinating.
Seven Days in the Art World, by Sarah Thornton – an oldie but a goody.
As always, please let me know if I can be of assistance in your art education.