Presented by Art Miami, the inaugural Art Southampton fair by far exceeded my expectations. This fair was very relevant, and hosted a great range of local Hampton artists and galleries as well as national and international galleries.
Hesitantly, I was expecting kitschy beach art to match the summer home drapes echoing Sippery Topsider’s colour trends.
Art Southamptons presented a very compelling range of art, from blue chip big names (Rauschenberg, Chuck Close, Cindy Sherman, etc) to a array of fun and accessible emerging artists. The over all theme was very Pop and cheeky humor, a lot of graffiti, as well as strong painting.
Highlight of the Art Southampton was Jeff Muhs (shown here beside his painting) at McNeill Art Group. Muhs is a local artist, showing at a Southampton based space. I love his romanticized by the blurred version of the Venus of Urbino – it felt like Gerhart Richter meets Ian Wallace. Also at McNeil’s booth, really liked the abstract paintings by LA based Nano Rubio
Loved the 4 media painting by Allan D’Arcangelo at Waterhouse& Dodd, and the large paintings by Marta Penter at Caldwell Snyder that resonate movement and light.
I loved this abstract painting by Cleve Grey, and I loved even more the wall label that had photos of the artists on them along side the painting description. This small detail really brings forward the notion of the hand of the artist (and the handsome face at that) to disconnect from the shopping vibe of fairs in general.
Of course no beach art fair is complete without giant Popsicle sculptures (one Peter Anton at Gallery Valentine and another by Tim Berg & Rebekah Myers and hyper-realistic painting of juicy watermelons to get the art taste buds throbbing.
Miami based Unix Gallery’s booth was the pinnacle of cheeky. Showing many works by LA based artist Desire Obtain Cherish, including a life sized sculpture of Larry Gagosian waving with finger puppets of Damien Hirst, Murikami, and Jeff Koons along side a massive sculpture of lollipops … suckers indeed!!
More humour from Alejandro Diaz who creates clever one liners in neon, and his cardboard sign sculptures that are not cardboard but in fact hand-pressed molded plastics onto which the one liners like ” Does this sign make me look fat” are inscribed.