A new satellite art fair has launched to run parallel to New York’s Armory week. For the first (and last) time, almost 100 artworks, artists, and performers gather in a 19th century Hell’s Kitchen building for a guerilla-style art show during Armory Arts Week.
Brought together by a New York City curator/artist team. Called THE(UN)FAIR, the free, multi-faceted art event includes paintings, installations, performance art, music, and…elevator comedians. One of the last vestiges of the manufacturing past of Hell’s Kitchen, the historic venue housed in a building managed by the non-profit Clinton Housing Development Corporation, is slated for conversion to affordable housing.
THE(UN)FAIR is a farewell gift from the artists who currently occupy the building, and their friends. Brought together by Jennifer Wallace, who runs art consultancy nAscent Art New York, and Mikel Glass, an artist, THE(UN)FAIR takes over an entire floor of 500 West 52nd Street, two blocks from the site of the 100th Anniversary edition of the Armory Show, Pier 92.
Unlike the Armory Show, says Wallace, “THE(UN)FAIR is a break from the frenzy and rigidity of cookie-cutter art fair booths. It celebrates amazing art by a hand-picked group of prestigious artists, but will also have ice cream from Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream and gourmet treats from Popcorn Indiana, which really speaks to the fun of the event.”
Mikel Glass adds, “The show celebrates the art spirit, in contrast to the message of commerce represented by the art fairs. The environment is immersive, the work is installed with connectivity between the artists, and the particularities of the hauntingly beautiful space itself are highlighted through an innovative lighting installation.” While the focus of the event centers on the exhibition, organizers expect much of the artwork to spark interest from buyers attending the Armory Show. Free stretch limousines will shuttle art fans from the Armory Show to THE(UN)FAIR and back.