Showing posts sorted by relevance for query Mayer Fine Art. Sort by date Show all posts
Showing posts sorted by relevance for query Mayer Fine Art. Sort by date Show all posts

Monday, November 24, 2014

Who's going to ABMB this year?

The below list is courtesy of The Center for the Creative Economy

DC Area Artists - Art Basel Miami - 2014

Jennifer Jacobs, Aqua Art Miami Director
(T) 503.810.7903

Mayer Fine Arts - Aqua Art Miami
Judith Peck (with Mayer Fine Arts at Aqua Art Miami)
Victoria Gaitan (with Mayer Fine Arts at Aqua Art Miami)

Morton Fine Art - Aqua Art Miami
Stephon Senegal (Morton Fine Art, Aqua Art Miami)
Victor Ekpuk (Morton Fine Art, Aqua Art Miami)

Hamiltonian Gallery - Aqua Art Miami -
Joshua Haycraft <> (Hamiltonian Gallery at Aqua)
Annette  Isham <> (Hamiltonian Gallery at Aqua)

VENUE Context Art Miami

Alida Anderson Art Projects - Context Art Miami
Audrey Wilson (with Alida Anderson at Context Art Miami)
Lenny Campello (with Alida Anderson at Context Art Miami)

Curator’s Office – Context Art Miami
Larry Cook <> (Curator's Office at Miami Context Art Miami)

VENUE Latin American Art Pavilion

Latin American Art Pavilion
Joan Belmar (The Latin American Art Pavilion at Red Dot Art Fair) curated by Dennys Matos

Contact: Prizm Art Fair in Miami and the founder director is Mikhaile Solomon
Wesley Clark
Amber Robles Gordon
Jamea Richmond Edwards
Irene Clouthier,
Adrienne Gaither

VENUE Art Miami
Connersmith Contemporary
Erik Thor Sandberg

DC Area Galleries
Alida Anderson Art Projects
Connersmith Contemporary
Morton Fine Art - MFA Amy Morton
Curator's Office
Mayer Fine Arts

Miami Organizations that have shown DC artists via application (Note: Aqua Art Miami doesn’t show individual artists, but only galleries via a rigorous application process; however, in the past they have vetted individual performance artists)

From Holly Bass - Map from 2012 - Beginners Guide to Art Base Miami

Beginner's guide to Art Basel:

Sunday, March 09, 2014

Mayer Fine Art Relocation Show

My Virginia dealer is the very hardworking art gallery Mayer Fine Art, which also represents several other DMV artists and who is one the Commonwealth's hardest working art dealers, as Sebastian has been doing art fairs all over the nation (and soon overseas).

They are moving to a new location in Norfolk and their grand opening show for their exciting new space is March 22nd from 7-9 PM.

Mayer Fine Art
801 Boush Street 
Norfolk, VA 23510

Featured Artists:
Matthew Fine • Alexey Terenin • Judith Peck • Victoria F. Gaitán • Jose Antonio Sorolla Gallen • John R. G. Roth • Sheila Giolitti • Tanja Softic • Lenny Campello • Erin Schwinn • Blade Wynn • Mark Chatterley • Michael Fitts • Elizabeth Ryland Mears

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Miami International Art Fair (Preview Day)

Yesterday I described the arrival of a damaged huge painting to Mayer Fine Art's focus booth at the MIA and how that cast a bad start to MIA for Norfolk's best art gallery.

I got up early today, drove to Rico Bakery (3401 Northwest 17th Avenue, Miami, FL 33142-5537 (305) 637-0707), where they make 2-3 dozen different Cuban pastelitos and a lot of really yummy baked food, and bought two dozen Cuban pastelitos (they give you a free one when you buy six), plus a generous breakfast sandwich (a fried egg with ham and cheese on a Cuban bread bun that is then put on that hot press that is also used to make the famous Cuban sandwich.

I drove to MIA and passed the food to some of our gallery neighbors (both of them are galleries from Bogota, Colombia) and to Frank and Helen from Philadelphia's hardworking Projects Gallery. By the way, Projects Gallery's Frank Hyder has one of the coolest installations that I've ever seen in any fair. It has everything that a good installation should have: cool, intelligent sculptural elements, sound and an intelligent sense (actually aura, not sense) of truly transforming a space (a whole booth in this case) into a distinctive work of art. I will do a video of this installation later this week.

About eleven or so, a nice Cuban guy with bright blue eyes (Proof that Anderson and Cameron Diaz are not the only ones) and with the unfortunate name of Fidel (for a Cuban in Miami anyway) shows up. He is the restorer with the task of fixing the damaged Alexey Terenin mega-painting.

I will blow the climax of the story by telling you that by the end of the day this guy will prove himself to be a magician as well.

It is seldom in my experience that I have seen an "expert" not only be an expert, but also an aficionado of his expertise and a true hero in this case. For my fellow galleristas: when you come to Miami, if you need any repair work, or stretching, or conservation, or framing, then Obrapia Fine Arts (1648 Southwest 8th Street
Miami, FL 33135-5220 (305) 646-6751) has my highest possible recommendation.

Fidel arrived, looked at the work and initially began to repair the two holes right on the spot. He did that easily and quickly, and after he was done, it was impossible to find them again. Because the painting had been laid flat during shipping (even though the crate was marked with giant letters with DO NOT LAY FLAT signs), the canvas had stretched and was wavy and bubbly and had several pressure marks. Sheila Giolitti needed it re-stretched, and it became clear that the only way to get it back to a taut canvas would be to un-frame it and re-tighten it. This is no easy task for a huge seven feet by seven feet work of art, and the decision was made to take the painting back to Obrapia's shop and work on it there.

Easily said, but that meant that Fidel would have to go and rent a truck, come back, pick up the painting from the Convention Center, take it to his shop, un-frame it, upgrade the stretcher bars, stretch it, re-frame it, drive it back to the Convention Center and hang it. And it was 3PM and the fair opens at 6PM.

Somehow this dude did it. At 5:30PM he was back with a beautifully taut painting, and not only had he fixed the tiny pricks, and not only had he re-stretched the saggy linen, and not only had he upgraded the stretcher bars and added a cross bar and four angle corners, but the amazing dude had also touched up the frame and eliminated all the nicks and bruises from it. And then he hung it.

And then he gave Mayer Fine Art the bill, and Sheila was shocked at how reasonable that bill was, and the amazing degree of professionalism and expertise and joy for the job shown by this talented conservator. And Obrapia Fine Arts got a well-earned tip on top of the bill from Mayer Fine Art. And not only that, but a lesson learned as well: from now on, MFA plans to ship all the large Terenin canvases to Obrapia ahead of the Miami fairs. They can stretch and frame it and deliver it to the fairs for a heck of a lot less than it would cost to frame it and then ship it to Miami and take a chance for damage during the shipping.

At 6PM the crowds started pouring in and we were essentially flooded with people and press. The food was hard to get at, as the food tables were surrounded by a mass of humanity, but we still had a good stock of pastelitos left.

Michael Fitts paintingFirst sale of the night was a gorgeous trompe l'oeil painting by Michael Fitts. It was sold to a French collector who paid in cash. He counted in French and kept making mistakes and giving us anywhere from 5-8 twenty dollar bills in what was supposed to be $100 counts (that's five $20 bills equals $100 for you folks in California). We all kept having to recount the money and after a while it was either a farce or I was beginning to suspect that this guy was doing it on purpose for some kind of a scam. Finally we got it under control, and we ended with a lot of Jacksons and Benjamins and he ended with a cool trompe l'oeil (on reclaimed metal) of paper airplanes.

All through the night I was being accosted over my Che Guevara video drawing. Even a member of the press warns me that I shouldn't have that piece in Miami. "Someone will take a hammer to it before the fair is over," he predicts. Once I explain the whole reverse meaning of the piece, he becomes more understanding. Later in the night he brings his wife over and I see her eyes rage with fury - he's the one having fun with her now. And he's the one that explains the work to her. At the end she congratulates me on a well-done piece.

At one point the video drawing is almost sold to a Venezuelan collector, but I begin to discuss the second video drawing that I'm now working on (Frida Kahlo) and he wants to see that one instead (once it is finished). I get his business card and kick myself.

MFA then sells an Erwin Timmers glass sculpture to a very well-known Florida art collector. Timmers will be pleased when he finds out who this collector is. The buyer tells me that he'll be flying to DC for the WPA Auction.

And just like that, the preview night is over at 10PM, and with all the drama of the damaged painting behind, we're now looking forward to the real opening (to the public) of the fair tomorrow.

Monday, March 31, 2008

Cuban Art: Four Key Women Artists

Cuban Art show curated by Campello
This is the poster for the grand opening of a new fine arts gallery in Norfolk, Virginia, Mayer Fine Art, which opens on April 12, 2008 with an exhibition curated by yours truly.

For Mayer Fine Art I selected the work of four of the leading contemporary Cuban artists in the world: Sandra Ramos, Aimee Garcia Marrero, Cirenaica Moreira (all of whom live and work in Havana) and Marta Maria Perez Bravo, who currently resides in Mexico, where she teaches.

Maleficio by Marta Maria Perez Bravo

"Maleficio" by Marta Maria Perez Bravo

Much like Migrations did for Charlottesville, I think that Mayer Fine Art will go a long way to put the Tidewater area on the fine arts map from an independent commercial fine arts gallery perspective.

Freedom is a huge word by Cirenaica Moreira
"La Libertad es una palabra enorme" [Freedom is a huge word] by Cirenaica Moreira

More on the exhibition and the trails and tribulations and expenses of getting contemporary Cuban artwork -- especially the kind not vetted nor approved by the Cuban dictatorship -- on American soil later...

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

You won't believe this...

Hardworking Norfolk art dealer Sheila Giolitti is the owner of Norfolk-based gallery Mayer Fine Art.

MFA is not only Norfolk's best art gallery (in my biased opinion since they represent me), but also the only Norfolk-based gallery and one of 2-3 Virginia art galleries that does art fairs around the US and overseas.

This morning Giolitti woke up to the news that her gallery website had been hacked into by an extremist Muslim group who filled her website with anti Jewish, hate-filled slogans, causing her account to be suspended.

Who knows why the website was targeted, unless some idiot thought that the "Mayer" in Mayer Fine Art means that it is a Jewish-owned gallery, which it isn't.

I don't know if there's a relationship, but I am also aware of the fact that several artists' email accounts around the Tidewater area have been recently hacked into and hate-filled emails sent out, and this morning my own personal account had been shut down (for unknown reasons so far) and I had to go through a laborious process to restore it and hope that it was all a precautionary step from MS.

One word to those whose heart and actions are filled with hate: you reap what you sow.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

(e)merge announces its exhibitors

The (e)merge art fair has announced its exhibiting galleries and invited unrepresented artists. Check them out here.

Also check out Maura Judkis' take on the issue in the WaPo here and GOG's Lavanya Ramanathan, also in the WaPo, here and Benjamin Freed in the WCP here.

The participants are:
GALLERY PLATFORM > galleries and non-profit art spaces
AUSTRIA: Brot Kunsthalle, Vienna. | BELGIUM: Nomad Gallery, Brussels. | CANADA: Pierre-François Ouellette Art Contemporain, Montréal. | FRANCE: Galerie E.G.P., Paris. | GERMANY: Galerie Anita Beckers, Frankfurt. | ITALY: Jerome Zodo Contemporary, Milan. / Teverina Fine Art, Cortona. | THE NETHERLANDS: Amstel Gallery, Amsterdam. | U.K.: Vane, Newcastle upon Tyne. | U.S.A: ADA Gallery, Richmond, VA. / Art Whino Gallery, National Harbor, MD. / Aureus Contemporary, Providence, RI. / Conner Contemporary Art, Washington, DC. / Corcoran College of Art + Design, Washington, DC. / Curator’s Office, Washington, DC. / Flashpoint Gallery, Washington, DC. / G Fine Art, Washington, DC. / Ghostprint Gallery, Richmond, VA. / Goya Contemporary, Baltimore. MD / Hamiltonian Artists, Washington, DC. / Heiner Contemporary, Washington, DC. / Hemphill Fine Arts, Washington, DC. / Honfleur Gallery, Washington, DC. / Irvine Contemporary, Washington, DC. / Jordan Faye Contemporary, Baltimore, MD. / Josée Bienvenu Gallery, New York, NY. / Lu Magnus Gallery, New York, NY. / Mayer Fine Art, Norfolk, VA. / McLean Project for the Arts, McLean, VA. / Maryland Institute College of Art, Baltimore, MD. / Mindy Solomon Gallery, St. Petersburg, FL. / monique meloche, Chicgo, IL / Solas Nua, Washington, DC. / The Studio Visit, Washington, DC. / Transformer, Washington, DC. / Washington Project for the Arts, Washington, DC. / White Columns, New York, NY.

ARTIST PLATFORM > unrepresented artists
CANADA: Tammi Campbell, Saskatoon / Jennifer Mawby, Vancouver. | GERMANY: Christina Kruse, Berlin (+ New York). U.S.A: Chukwuma Agubokwu, Upper Marlboro, MD. / Becky Alprin, Chicago, IL. / Nico Antoniadis + Alexi Stone, Boston, MA. / Holly Bass, Washington, DC. / Kristina Bilonick, Washington, DC. / Calder Brannock, College Park, MD. / Bradley Chriss, Bethesda, MD / Matias Cuevas, Washington, DC. / Double A Projects, Brooklyn, NY. / Jeremy Flick, Tacoma Park, MD. / Free Space Collective, Washington, DC. / Jeremy Haik, Brooklyn, NY. / Terence Hannum, Chicago, IL. / Syed Sibtul Hasnain, Leesburg, VA. / Evan Hume, Washington, DC. / Steven Jones, Baltimore, MD. / Craig Kraft, Washington, DC. / Jacqueline Levine, Washington, DC. / Adam Lister, Arlington, VA. / Katherine Mann, Alexandria, VA. / Nathan Manuel + D. Billy, Brooklyn, NY. / J.J. McCracken, Mt. Ranier, MD, / Patrick McDonough, Washington, DC. / Jonathan, Monaghan, Oceanside, NY. / Kendall Nordin, Washington, DC. / Sean Noyce, Brooklyn, NY. / Peacock, Queens, NY. / Beverly Ress, Washington, DC. / Siobhan Rigg, Washington, DC. / Zach Rockhill, Brooklyn. / Sam Scharf, Washington, DC. / David B. Smith, New York,NY. / Dan Solberg, Washington, DC. / Emma Spertus, Oakland, CA. / James J. Williams III, Brooklyn, NY. / Wilmer Wilson IV, Richmond, VA.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Miami International Art Fair (Set up day)

The 5 AM cab ride from Potomac to Reagan National was pretty hairy considering that the streets of the Soviet Socialist Republic of Montgomery County were pretty icy and snowy, and there were more than one ice tail spins along Bells Mill Drive on the way to Seven Locks and Democracy Blvd and the Beltway.

The Beltway was pretty clear of snow and ice, but I am always shocked to discover how many cars are out there at 5 in the morning. Who are all these drivers and where the fuck are they all going at 5 AM?

My cab driver (I always call the same guy, his names is Bones, and he will get you from A to B every time on time. Once you have a dependable cab driver, one must return to the force every time). Bones is reliable, big and strong, a brilliant storyteller and really resembles that huge guy from the Green Mile.

So we get to DCA on time, in spite of a few spin-offs at the George Washington Parkway, and I'm loving Jet Blue because they don't charge a fee for luggage while most of the other airlines scam you out of $50 per round trip if you check in a bag; and because flight 1795 is leaving on time in spite of the ice and snow. But once we're in the plane, by the time we're de-iced it is is almost 90 minutes past departure time, but I'm cool because I am heading to Miami for the second Miami International Art Fair (MIA) at the Miami Beach Convention Center and it is in the 70s in Florida and according to the weather people, Florida is the only state in the union (including Hawaii) which doesn't have snow somewhere on the ground today. WTF happened to global warming?

When we land (it was a Navy landing by the way, because it was clearly the short runway), the tall, skinny flight attendant dude tells us that we've made up 30 minutes from our late departure, which as usual leads me to think: do they fly "faster" if they leave late?

Then I get a rental car, and as always marvel at all the bullshit car rental taxes in Florida that cost almost as much as the actual rental car cost, but I get a free upgrade to a minivan because they're out of "real" cars...

Then I drive to quickly see my parents before stopping over at Casablanca Bakery in Hialeah for the best pastelitos, papa rellena, croquetas, bacalao, yuca rellena, and Cuban bread in the area (and a full breakfast anytime for $3). They put it all in a nice box and I take it to my parents.

From there I drive to Little Havana, where I had left a bunch of my artwork in store at my cousin's house. I get there, load up the minivan and head to Miami Beach to meet Sheila, the hardworking artist and owner/director of Mayer Fine Art to help her set up in booth 105 of the fair.

At the MB Convention Center there's an army of people assembling booths and putting art shows together. This is the same floor, the same place where the "real" Art Basel Miami Beach takes place, and there's a feeling to being here that is quite unique.

Mayer Fine Art actually has two booths at this fair: one for gallery artists and one focus booth for their big selling European superuberartist Alexey Terenin.

Terenin deserves the focus booth (curated by Aldo Castillo).

Terenin... this Russian-born painter is an exceptional master of the marriage of the palette knife with the brush and with intensely psychological scenarios... and he sells like crazy!

For MIA, Sheila has chosen a huge Terenin painting, almost seven feet tall. She has spent over a thousand dollars getting it stretched, framed, crated and shipped to Miami Beach for the spotlight of a focus booth in this show.

When it arrives, it has been damaged in transit by the shipper, who has clearly ignored the DO NOT LAY FLAT markings on the crate. There are two huge gouge holes on the crate, which in turn have worked their way through the protective wood, board and plastic protection around the linen painting to just barely kiss the back of the painting with a sharp steel tooth of a yellow gear transport and bite the linen to leave a mark, almost invisible, on the canvas, and the tiniest of wounds to the paint itself.

Two of them, as if a gigantic snake had brushed the rear of the painting with needle-like teeth. Two tiny pin-like pricks... almost invisible to the eye, but not to the ethics of a decent art dealer.

Within minutes Aldo Castillo has a conservation restorer on the line. He will come tomorrow morning to assess the damage and repair it on site. Sheila's investment in this yet unsold painting continues.

And so does this report from MIA... tomorrow.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Affordable Art Fair New York: Final Report

Home at last, tired (more like exhausted) after five days of hauling artwork up and down to the 11th floor and schlepping it for five days at AAFNYC.

Overall it is my impression that most galleries at this fair sold very well. Perhaps it is an indication that the art economy is taking a tiny advance, or perhaps it is a simple sign of the times where people are looking at affordable art more closely?

In my personal sphere, I sold a lot of my own drawings (around 30 of them), and the gallery showing my work (Mayer Fine Art of Norfolk, Virgina) also did exceptionally well, practically selling out of Sheila Giolitti's paintings on Friday and Saturday, and essentially selling out all 12 of Matt Sesow's paintings that they brought, and had they brought more, they could have probably sold another dozen. I bet Matt's website experiences a "surge" of interest after this fair, as Mayer Fine Art must have given out a couple of hundred business cards with his details to interested buyers.

Sale of a gorgeous Tim Tate audiovisual sculpture to a major San Francisco collector, and a large Cirenaica Moreira photograph to a well-known collection of Cuban art also helped to push MFA's numbers.

Drew TalAcross from us, New York's Emmanuel Fremin Gallery had a slow start, but by Sunday they had quite a few red dots, mostly accomplished by multiple sales of Drew Tal's gorgeous photography.

And Montreal's Arteria continued to do well, with the roster of young Canadian artists whom they represent.

DC area galleries also seemed to do well, and I continued to see folks from Honfleur and Fraser bring works to the wrapping station.

And finally, tear down was not the nightmare that I thought it was going to be. The fair ended on Sunday at 5PM, and by 8PM we were out of there and stuck in the gridlock traffic for the tunnel to New Jersey.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Art of Glass II

Ten years ago, the major arts institutions of the Greater Hampton Roads area in Virginia joined together to put together of the most successful examples of region-wide art partnership events: The Art of Glass.

Across Norfolk and the Greater Tidewater area, through the Art of Glass, they proved that art has the power to be a transcendent force.

In April 2009, the Chrysler Museum of Art, the Contemporary Art Center of Virginia and the Virginia Arts Festival, as well as many of the Norfolk-area art galleries, will once again collaborate to create a landmark event for Hampton Roads: Art of Glass 2.

Anchored by The Art of Glass II, the Chrysler Museum of Art will have Lino Tagliapietra in Retrospect: A Modern Renaissance in Italian Glass. Held at the Chrysler Museum of Art. This is the first exhibition to thoroughly examine the career and art of Lino Tagliapietra. The exhibition presents 155 works from Tagliapietra’s 40-year career, including pivotal works from the artist’s own collection and collections around the world as well as designs made for industry and objects that have never before been exhibited.

The Chrysler Museum will also have Contemporary Glass Among the Classics, which features glass installations from four contemporary artists: Katherine Gray, Stephen Knapp, Karen LaMonte, and Beth Lipman. Focusing on each artist’s approach to the versatile material of glass, this exhibition will present new works inspired by the Chrysler’s collection. Gray, LaMonte, and Lipman’s works will be featured throughout various galleries alongside objects from the Museum’s collection.

The Contenporary Art Center of Virginia has a wide host of events and exhibitions lined up with Hank Murta Adams, Dante Marioni, and others; see them all here.

Several key DC area artists will be involved in the festivities as Mayer Fine Arts hosts Dialogues in Glass with the usual powerhouse names from the DC area. Click on below image for more details.

Mayer Fine Arts

Saturday, May 09, 2009

Affordable Art Fair NY day two and three

Day two and three (Thursday and Friday) at AAFNYC went pretty much along the same way as the opening night, with good crowds and (since we are really close to the wrapping station) we can keep an eye on the sales, and the wrapping station was always busy through both days.

Some of the press reviews have come out, and yesterday Robert Ayers discussed his impressions of the fair and had some good things to say about both my former DC art gallery and about Tim Tate's work (showing with Norfolk's Mayer Fine Art). And LoftLife also reviews the fair and picks MFA with the splendid Santeria work of Marta Maria Perez Bravo.

Talking about Mayer Fine Art, its hardworking owner, Sheila Giolitti, is selling like gangbusters and her resin paintings are flying off the wall. Last year she sold out at AAFNYC and this year Giolitti is once again on the way to a sell out.

On the press preview I got into a slight tiff with a journalist.

She looked at Tim Tate's work and stated, "I know this artist."

"Cool," I responded, and I began to start discussing Tate's work with her.

"He shouldn't be here!" she exclaimed in a thick French accent, clearly miffed. The staff at MFA looked a little puzzled.

"Why?" I asked.

"This fair is supposed to be about emerging artists, and Tate is in museums already, so he's certainly not an emerging artist," she added.

It's not easy to throw me for a verbal loop, but this almost did. I started to counter her point about who or what can be at this fair or any other fair, but she kept going, adding more reasons why Tate's work doesn't belong at AAF.

"I disagree," was all that I could come up with.

"Well," she said imperiously as she walked away miffed, "I disagree too!"

In our row, our across the aisle neighbor, Arteria from Montreal, Canada seems to be doing well, and on Friday night they moved a huge wall sized oil by Jonathan Theroux. Also nearby, MAC Art Group from Miami, Florida is selling their riot of tropical colors steadily and works by Cuban painter Vicente Dopico-Lerner is doing well.

DC area galleries seem to be faring positively as well, and I've seen Honfleur's staff at the wrapping line several times and both Fraser and Nevin Kelly seem to be moving work.

Finally, the new location across the street from the Empire State Building is a winner (in my opinion), since the floor plan is much better and there are no "bad spots" for booths. Because it is on the 11th floor, setting and tear down might be a nightmare, but we'll see.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

DMV area galleries heading to Miami

I probably don't have a complete list, but from what I've gathered, the usual group of DMV and neighboring cities' galleries are heading south next week for the Art Basel Miami Beach week of fairs around the Greater Miami area.

We are heading to the Context Art Miami fair in Wynwood - come see us in booth E-82.  Connersmith, C.Grimaldis and Goya Contemporary will be next door at Art Miami; Adah Rose and Adamson are heading to Pulse; Mayer Fine Art, Ghostprint, Hamiltonian and Morton Fine Art are all heading to Aqua Art Miami (where we were for the last three years and had our best fairs ever!); Project 4 is in Scope, and Randall Scott Projects is at Miami Project.

As I've noted many times before: if you are a 21st century gallerist or artist, you gotta go to the dance.

There's a truckload of more art fairs... check them out here.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Tonight in Norfolk

Mayer Fine ArtSeveral DMV area artists, such as Tim Tate, Andrew Wodzianski and yours truly are in MFA's Winter show. The reception is February 26, from 7-9PM.

MFA is easily and by far (in my clearly subjective opinion, but easily checked out), Norfolk's top fine arts gallery, with a gorgeous location on the city's waterfront.

Mayer Fine Art
333 Waterside Drive
Norfolk, VA 23510
(757) 803-4749

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

This Friday in Norfolk

Mayer Fine Art - Matt Sesow
My good bud Matt Sesow opens in Norfolk's best art gallery, Mayer Fine Art. The opening reception is from 7-9PM.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Artists and art fairs

If you are a visual artist or art dealer/gallerist in today’s ever changing visual art world, and you’re not aware or know about the Miami art fairs that take place each year-end and are clustered around Miami and Miami Beach, then you have a problem that needs urgent attention.

Almost a decade ago, the founders and organizers of a European art fair called Art Basel (which of course, takes place in Basel, Switzerland), decided to try an American version of their successful European model and started an art fair in the Miami Beach Convention Center and they called it Art Basel Miami Beach or ABMB for short.

This was nothing new in the American art fair scene, as even in Miami art fairs such as Art Miami had been going on for years. But whatever right timing and combination of European flavoring added to Miami's Cubanized international art scene did was spectacular and ABMB took off like Meat Loaf's second album's title.

In the halcyon days of the healthy economy of those days, the art fair proved to be a spectacular success, with millions of dollars of artwork by the blue chip names of the art world exchanging hands at ABMB as collectors from all over the world congregated in Miami’s balmy December to be seen at the sharp point of the spear of the contemporary art world.

ABMB’s success soon spawned other art fairs, which are called “satellite fairs”, since they all revolve around ABMB’s dates and presence on America’s coolest and most international beach city. The evolution of these satellite fairs was fed by the fact that ABMB focused almost exclusively on European galleries and a handful of the top tier American New York galleries.

In those days, even if you were the best gallery in Chicago, or LA or Miami itself, you had zero chance to be invited to ABMB.

room 218 at Aqua Art fair 2011And thus satellite art fairs with names like Scope, Red Dot, Bridge, Pulse, NADA and others began to appear around Miami at the same time as ABMB. Soon, someone came up with the novel idea that these art fairs could also take place in hotel rooms, and the “hotel fair” was born. Many of these also began to appear, none better than the Aqua Art Fair, now called “the best hotel art fair in the world.” Having just done Aqua, I can testify brother, that the Aqua organizers have it down, and in my limited opinion, this is indeed the best hotel art fair in the world.

Back to my story... by 2010, even with the economy in the doldrums that refuse to go away, there were 25 art fairs going on around Miami starting roughly around November 28 through the first Sunday of December.

Yes dear readers, 25 art fairs at once! Some developed a tight focus, such as for Asian art or photography, others tried to establish an artist-oriented focus, but in general, all recognized that something special happens each December in Miami.

By now the figures are mind blowing: I am told by Miami journalists from Rumor Control that during that week of the ABMB art fairs, roughly 20% of all the art work sold in the world exchanges hands in Miami.

Furthermore, as the magnitude of the event grew, so did the attendance by both the “need to be seen” crowd and by even more worldwide collectors and, just as importantly, the press.

Thus now the news media not only discusses what’s new or who’s hot in the art world, but also they let us know who Sly Stallone or other Hollywood stars of all magnitude are acquiring. It has become cool for Hollywood stars and wannabes to collect art, which in most Einsteinian dimensions is a good thing.

The concentrated press reporting has also made celebrities out of mega collectors, such as the Miami based Rubell or DeLaCruz families.

Most of the art fairs are gallery-focused; that means that it is art galleries, as opposed to individual artists, who exhibit artwork. The prices for the booths are spectacularly expensive, and generally, a small 200 sq. ft. booth can start at $10,000 or more, and a large booth can run as high as $100,000. And this is before a gallery adds other associated costs such as shipping costs of the artwork, transportation to/from Miami, customs, food, car rental, hotel and salaries.

For most galleries around the world it is a daunting economic investment, which can turn into a financial disaster if sales fail to materialize.

Around the DMV, only a handful of local area galleries took the risk over the last few years. Spaces such as Conner Contemporary, Civilian Art Projects, Hamiltonian Gallery, Fraser Gallery, Irvine Contemporary, and a precious few others, took the venture out to Miami. One local dealer, Art Whino, began its own model and sets up its own ABMB space in Miami during that week.

“I meet more art collectors that week in Miami than the entire year in DC,” related one local art dealer.

“Over the years,” added another, “about 80% of my sales take place at, or because of art fairs in Miami, New York, LA, etc.”

The opportunity to actually sell art is a powerful magnet to tempt art dealers to take the economic plunge. “My openings in Norfolk are always packed, and the shows get good press coverage here,” notes Norfolk’s Mayer Fine Art’s director Sheila Giolitti, who has been also going to Miami for the last few years (disclosure: she represents my work), “And yet, the Norfolk area has a very limited market for contemporary art. If it wasn’t for the art fairs, keeping a gallery in this area would not be a viable option.”

Read: "Because of Miami and other art fairs, I wouldn't be able to have a gallery in Norfolk." Norfolk should be grateful to Miami...

Individual artists have also begun to use the Miami opportunity to showcase their own approaches. None of these have been as cool or successful as Calder Brannock’s Camper Contemporary.

Camper Contemporary is a mobile gallery created and curated by Calder Brannock. According to the artist, “It is a fully functional art gallery set up inside an altered 1967 Yellowstone camper. Camper Contemporary gallery poses a solution for many problems a gallery faces in the modern art market. It allows the gallerist to showcase work in a clean controlled gallery environment without being tethered to rents or a geographic location. The mobile gallery model allows the gallerist to maintain a physical space where work can be displayed with all the benefits and gravitas of a traditional gallery while easily reaching collectors at art fairs and other large art markets.”

So how does an artist get to Miami if he/she is not represented by a gallery, or their gallery doesn’t do art fairs or chooses not to bring your work to the party?

Some ideas next later...

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Video of Sandra Ramos' opening last weekend

Ramos will be delivering a lecture on contemporary Cuban art at George Mason University on Thursday Oct 28th at 1:30 at the School of Art - Room 2001. The talk and slide lecture will discuss the state of contemporary Cuban art. It is free and open to the public.
Sandra Ramos groundbreaking work in the 1990s was amongst the first to challenge and expose the harsh realities of Cuban life. By addressing forbidden issues such as mass migration, the plight of Cuba’s raft people, racism in Cuban society and the inequalities of Cuban life, Ramos found a voice through her art that has brought her worldwide fame and inclusion in many private and museums' permanent collections, such as the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, Dallas Art Museum, Miami Art Museum, Fuchu Art Museum in Japan, Thyssen Bornemisza in Vienna and regionally at the University of Virginia Art Museum.

Sandra Ramos resides in Havana, Cuba. Her work has also been showcased at Art Basel Switzerland, ARCO Madrid, Art Basel Miami Beach, multiple Biennials and many other worldwide art fairs.
Her second US solo show, "Exodus", showcasing her latest paintings, videos and etchings, opened last Saturday, Oct. 23rd at Norfolk's Mayer Fine Art Gallery. The video at the top is from the opening.

Friday, December 06, 2013

Miami report

Although as usual I'm always stuck at whatever art fair that I'm doing, and seldom have the chance to explore other art fairs, DMVers in Miami for the fairs, as well as fellow dealers are always reporting to me.

I'm at Context Art Miami, which so far has been doing very well for us. We have DMV artists Ric Garcia and Audrey Wilson (and my own brilliant work, of course). Wilson, who will have her first solo show coming up in DC soon (more on that later) has been especially doing well, both in sales and commissions, as well as curatorial attention. The key here is that DC collectors need to buy Audrey Wilson now, as soon as she has that first solo show.

Also at Context are DMV artists Tim Tate, showing with California's Seager Gray Gallery and Mark Jenkins, showing with LA's Fabien Castanier Gallery.

Context is easily the best art fair that I have ever been to - the level of artwork is right up there with the top of the art fairs food chain. There is powerful diversity at Context - both in artwork as well as geographic distribution of the galleries. It's clear to me that this art fair made a powerful debut last year and now has made an even more powerful statement in its second year.

Scope had a great opening night on Monday with strong sales on their previews, but just like Untitled, they are now facing the same challenges as Untitled because Ocean drive in Miami Beach is down to one lane because of constructions. Also the hike between the two was tough (either across the beach or all the way back to Ocean Drive). Scope's VIPs had free rides from Fiats, which was a good coup as they could get rides around; I hear that the Fiat Pop was a delightful car.

DC's Project 4 is showing at Scope. Also at Scope you can find DMV artist JT Kirkland with New York's Blank Space. I am also told that Miami's Emerson Dorsch Gallery in Untitled has an arresting video program that is that highlight of that fair. Victoria Fu's "Belle Captive II" video has been getting rave reviews from some key video collectors that reported to me.

Some think that "Aqua is struggling," in part because "the young, quirky galleries have mostly been replaced by established galleries and replaced by Art Miami galleries," said to me one collector. There is also some sort of "art project" sign hanging near the entrance to Aqua that is causing some consternation to some galleries, as the sign (which again, is an art project) delivers the "impression that Aqua is where one goes to get cheap art for the office." On the other hand, Norfolk's Mayer Fine Art Gallery is reporting booming sales (she's also exhibiting DC's Victoria Gaitan's gorgeous photography). DC's Morton Fine Arts is also showing at Aqua, and some DMV artists, such as Eric Finzi and Barbara Januszkiewicz, are also there with other galleries.

Texas collector Ardis Bartle noted that "Aqua traditionally brought in an University or college art program and the emerging artists out of that program, and as a collector I would always buy one those pieces, and it gave the University (last year it was Atlanta University) a chance to shine."

"This year," she noted, "they curated two emerging artists who looked like the rest of the show: it was somewhat banal." She added: "Bring back the Universities."

Art Basel apparently has added a lot of new, upcoming artists from all over the world, that there seems to be a new wave of newer artists (Claire Morgan's name was mentioned to me) in addition to all the multimillion dollar blue chip artists.

I went to the grand opening of the Perez Art Museum Miami (PAMM) last night, which could now possibly be the most spectacular museum architectural design on the planet -- the video by Yael Bartana that they were playing on the screen at the opening was breathtakingly beautiful and full of raw power.

PAMM's grand opening was packed to the gills - I mean thousands and thousands of people! Everyone and anyone who is someone in the arts world seemed to be there, as well as thousands of people who had previously probably never set foot in a museum... cough, cough...

I'm a little worried about the PAMM's ability to stand a strong hurricane though... there are a lot of wood floors! I wish them the best of luck - it is a spectacular museum at an even more spectacular location.

At Pulse I hear that "it was too crowded! They need to do something about the bathrooms!" Being too crowded if a good thing most of the time. I hear that Sabrina Gschwandtner's quilts of 16mm film are the true find of Pulse - at least two major collectors passed that info to me.

Art Miami across the way from Context is also very impressive - DC's Connersmith is there (they are also at Context).

Ardis Bartle noted that the Zoom In video halls were impressive, but "it's too hot inside those tents during the day to stay in there long!" Good advice from a very intense collector!

More later!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Sandra Ramos lecture at George Mason University

Thursday Oct 28th at 1:30 at the School of Art - Room 2001. The talk and slide lecture will discuss the state of contemporary Cuban art. It is free and open to the public.

Sandra Ramos groundbreaking work in the 1990s was amongst the first to challenge and expose the harsh realities of Cuban life. By addressing forbidden issues such as mass migration, the plight of Cuba’s raft people, racism in Cuban society and the inequalities of Cuban life, Ramos found a voice through her art that has brought her worldwide fame and inclusion in many private and museums' permanent collections, such as the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, Dallas Art Museum, Miami Art Museum, Fuchu Art Museum in Japan, Thyssen Bornemisza in Vienna and regionally at the University of Virginia Art Museum.

Sandra Ramos resides in Havana, Cuba. Her work has also been showcased at Art Basel Switzerland, ARCO Madrid, Art Basel Miami Beach, multiple Biennials and many other worldwide art fairs.
Her second US solo show, "Exodus", showcasing her latest paintings, videos and etchings, opens this coming Saturday, Oct. 23rd at Norfolk's Mayer Fine Art Gallery.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

And the openings begin: ABMB Day One

Tonight was the openings for Art Miami, Scope, Red Dot and some other fairs, and I had a chance to stroll through those three and chat with some gallerists and artists.

Over at the Art Miami press lounge, the buzz, from some journos and locals, other than the street trees being "decorated" in shirts and tops, was Art Basel's "contraction" or how ABMB had reduced the number of galleries at last year's ABMB.

"I'm not sure if this is was a result of the economy," said a savvy Miami art writer, "Or ABMB throwing a bone to the satellite fairs."

He must have seen the quizzical Klingonesque forehead expression in my face, because he expanded by adding that the economy seems to have had a profound impact on the number of galleries applying to the satellite art fairs, as more and more galleries stay home due to lackluster sales.

"I know of a local Miami gallerist who sold a million dollar painting at ABMB last year and this year he didn't get invited back," he postulated, "And so he went to the next best fair, Art Miami."

Heads nod. "And yet, ABMB week has a record 260 art galleries this year," someone says.

"What's the art fair food chain looking like this year?," I asked. By that I meant to ascertain as to which ones were the top fairs. Another journo chimed in and noted that she thought that after ABMB, Art Miami was the best satellite art fair, followed by Pulse and Scope.

Heads nod.

"But Scope is in a real down spiral," noted yet a third voice, this time belonging to a local artist whose gallery is at Art Miami. Several heads nodded in agreement looking like a Nirvana video.

"And Red Dot is surprisingly picking up former Scope galleries left and right," added the guy who had coined the term "contraction."

"Uh?... why is that?", I asked, recalling that one of my own dealers had turned down an invitation from Scope and chosen Red Dot.

"I'm going to check this out over the next few days," he expanded, "But I'm told that Red Dot more than doubled its size from last year and that a lot of 2010 Scope galleries are now showing at Red Dot, especially a lot of Asian galleries."

"Free booze and food at opening night..." commented a new voice.

While there is free booze (all kinds of wines, Herradura Tequila and Finlandia vodka non stop) and food (be ready to fight) at Red Dot's opening night, in my opinion there's also a huge change for the better over the last few years. In fact, I would opine that this is the best Red Dot that I've ever seen and I know that Scope now realizes that Red Dot is breathing down their neck when it comes to the art galleries' food chain... and Red Dot has food and booze... heh, heh...

The two fairs, next to each other, still have huge differences. Scope seems to be stuck a little in a presence and feel that was cool and popular when everything that hanged sold; that's a thing of the past. Red Dot booths hang a lot of artwork.

And while the minimalist look of the Scope galleries may still show a once cool approach to art fair presence, the lack of crowds and lack of red dots and alleged mass exodus to its neighboring art fair, where hanging is a bit more relaxed (read that a gallery can hang more artwork in their booths), plus the fact that this year's Red Dot's booths are quite a bit taller than usual (affording more vertical wall space), may reflect the realities of the new art fair world.

"I think the days when an art fair director could dictate to a gallery what artist to hang are rapidly coming to an end," opined a local art blogger.

"What about Art Miami?" I asked.

"Art Miami has become the second choice if a gallery can't get into ABMB" was the consensus opinion, and my own walk-thorough showed a highly sophisticated art fair with a very good blend of art galleries and a sharp, elegant presentation in most of them, with a clear and surprising lack of trendy art and more of a lean towards commodifiable artwork.

I haven't seen Pulse yet, thus I asked about Pulse.

"I think Pulse has learned the Scope lesson and is making an U-Turn on its brand," opined someone and heads nodded.

I Klingoned my forehead and the opiner expanded, "Pulse is doing a great job of still appearing cool and trendy while its galleries shift to more traditional artwork that can actually be sold... check out how all of a sudden realism is all over Pulse."

The next few days will tell... meanwhile, over at Scope, I had heard some good buzz over Trawick Prizewinner David Page's performance; he's there with Baltimore's Jordan Faye Contemporary. Page's unique work really stood out at Scope. A couple of other DMV are dealers are also at Scope: Hamiltonian, Civilian and first time Scoper Heiner Contemporary, who was showing the amazing work of (e)merge wunderkind Avery Lawrence plus Elizabeth Huey, David Kramer and Jon-Phillip Sheridan.

Heiner has one of the best looking art fair booths of all time, courtesy of Lawrence's familial wallpaper, part of his "Moving a Tree" project.

There are no DMV galleries in Red Dot or Art Miami, although AM has two Baltimore dealers in their roster.

Tomorrow the hot ticket is the opening party at Aqua, where yours truly has been busting his keister for the last two days preparing for tomorrow night's opening.

Celebrity sighting: Doctor Quinn Medicine Woman is two booths across from Norfolk's Mayer Fine Art! Jane Seymour's artwork dominates the booth of her gallerist, and paintings, watercolors and sculptures by the actress and artist, who was there tonight, all 85 pounds of her, dominate the booth. Her watercolors are by far her best work...