I had the best intentions I promise. I had a slew of photos for you documenting my visit to New York and the various fairs but unfortunately Mrs. OC Art Blog's camera, with my precious photos, is traveling around NYC somewhere in the back of a cab. So that means you're going to get my down & dirty summary of what I saw this weekend.
The Whitney Biennial: I overheard a particular dealer state that the Whitney this year is not a survey of what's going on in art but rather "what's going on in curating" and I would have to agree. Throw in a couple of the right artist's, ask them what friends of theirs they should be looking at and include a few of those and then make sure the "right" galleries are represented and then build your thesis around what hodgepodge you're left with. If you take some time you can follow the lines. It's all there.
The Standout: My vote goes to Omar Fast. (Isn't the Biennial a survey of American art?)
The Fairs: The fairs I did make were The Armory, Volta, Pulse and LA Art in NY. The two best were Volta and LA Art in NY. The reason came down to size, both those fairs were smaller so they were made more manageable and you didn't get burned out as fast. Volta being the best because of the single artist format. The Armory and Pulse both had great art but were just so big that it was quite daunting. I'm not sure how people do the fair circuit two or three times a year and I especially feel sorry for the dealers, you could see the agony on a lot of faces.
Take Away: As I wandered through a couple of the fairs and began to see multiple works by the same artist in multiple booths I began to wonder if this way of showing work is in the best interest of the artist? Sure you can make the exposure to new audience argument but after a while, in my eyes, the art became an object of the market and any meaning, etc. was lost.
The Worst of the Weekend: I paid a visit to the New Museum in their new building. The new building was nice, the art in the new building was crap. I haven't seen a show that bad in a long time. Is anybody trying anymore?? It seems that todays art viewer doesn't mind being told "fuck You" in an edition of three.
The Best of the Weekend: I had the great opportunity to meet one of my favorite artists of the moment Trevor Paglen. Some of you might remember this post. Trevor is one of the few artists that is accurately capturing the zeitgeist of these tumultuous times. Plus he's a really nice guy. A bonus.