Climb the Dan Flavin lit staircase to view 3 floors of open space and with random sculptures and instillations otherwise known as Independent.
The Flavin lighted staircase is the same as 2010, I don't know if this is an instillation in the building, laziness, or a grasp at continuity. From the first landing you can read the list of galleries on each floor, continue to the first level (2nd floor) and the show begins.
One of the shocking things about this "art fair that isn't an art fair" in relation to the other fairs is the open space. I got into explaining this last year.
Big open rooms, randomly placed sculptures and a few paintings here and there. I was disappointed last year by the lack of line art (which is the focus of this blog) and this year that seems to have been corrected in Independent, but I don't know if it's all for the greater good.
The pieces that puzzled me the most were the comic strip character b&w prints. These were line art drawings, which I assume are line for line reproductions of singular characters removed from the sequential comic structure of some popular strips. Garfield being the prime example.
This goes against all I learned from the earliest art class in elementary school where the boy next to me had a mead Garfield Trapper Keeper and the art teacher noticed that he was copying the drawing. When she saw what he was doing she made an over the top example of him to the class explaining the definition of plagiarism and how it was the art world equivalent of stealing.
This odd memory was burnt into my young creative mind during the formative years. It translated to "Only Jim Davis can draw Garfield," so when I saw it in this gallery I assumed Jim Davis was involved. But then I saw the other prints they were selling.
Andy Capp! They are selling Andy Capp prints for between 4 and 8 hundred dollars. You got to be shitting me. If these are prints aren't licensed to the estate of the late Reg Smythe then this doesn't make any sense to me. But the real capper was this.... . .
HOTEL gallery in London. Clearly a drawing of Pigpen by the hand of legendary cartoonist Charles Schultz, but wait a second. . .
. . . wtf? Steven Claydon_?
Another gallery was showing this grouping of drawings. Upper left panel was a piece of Tom & Jerry line art, most likely not even a redraw but more a scanned print of an animation cell turned b&w printed and framed.
So most of the line art wasn't original, which was what I noticed last year at this event, but at least this year there was more of it which is a step in the positive direction.
White Columns presented some work by Ella Kruglyanskaya, see above the painting with the girl reading the newspaper, and the white framed line art drawing to it's left. The paintings have a pretty cool Picasso influence that I enjoyed.
A fun cartoonish use of space.
This red car thing was meant to replace the DeLorean from last year I assume.
Although not line art I did like this little guy, in that he made me laugh. It's a good thing that he's dead because his arms would be killing him by now.
Above are some line art pencil drawings by Chris Hipkiss presented by Galerie Susanne Zander .
On the roof they had installed a tented eating area and a few random benches under a water tower with great views. I clicked the elevator button for down, but it was taking forever so I descended all of the flights of fluorescence making room for the upward heading throngs on my left.
There is a real creative energy that rushes over New York during Armory week, and I could see it in a lot of the attendee's faces. I'll be out of state tomorrow but I hope to hit a bunch of the other art fairs in the remaining two days. I am not running the full 13 fair big top gauntlet as I did last year, but I do want to absorb as much as I can before they yank out the tent posts and pack em up.
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