NEW YORK CITY.- With concern about the economy lingering in the art world, a surprising number of robust sales were experienced by galleries at The AIPAD Photography Show New York, presented by the Association of International Photography Art Dealers (AIPAD) from March 26-29, 2009. In addition to the strong sales, attendance held steady at the Park Avenue Armory in New York City with 8,000 visitors. Many dealers commented that business was much better than they expected.
Seventy-three of the worlds leading fine art photography galleries presented a wide range of museum-quality work including contemporary, modern, and 19th-century photographs, as well as photo-based art, video, and new media. The 29th edition of The AIPAD Photography Show New York opened with a well-attended Gala Preview on March 25 to benefit the John Szarkowski Fund, an endowment for photography acquisitions at The Museum of Modern Art in New York City.
Collectors from around the world, leading museum directors and curators, art dealers, artists and photographers, leaders from the worlds of business, entertainment and fashion, as well as celebrities and the media, attended The AIPAD Photography Show New York. Notable names included Jeremy Irons, Ralph Fiennes, Peter Riegert, Richard Prince, Bob Colacello, Paolo Ventura, Sylvia Plachy, Lillian Bassman, Jerry Uelsmann, Maggie Taylor, Timothy Greenfield-Sanders, Christina Kruse, Albert Maysles, Bruce Davidson, Paul Solberg and Christopher Makos, Karin Apollonia Muller, Glenn Lowry, Peter Galassi, Alexis Stewart, Albert Watson, Elliot Erwitt, Martin Schoeller, Tina Barney, David A. Dechman, Edgar and Sue Wachenheim, and Nancy L. Lane.
Private tours led by major museum directors and curators, brought in collectors including: Richard and Ronay Menschel, Gary and Sarah Walkowitz, Fred and Stephanie Shuman, Christian Keesee, and Arthur Fleischer.
In addition to The Museum of Modern Art, New York, many other major institutions were represented including The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Los Angeles County Museum of Art; The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; The Art Institute of Chicago; George Eastman House, Rochester, NY; Centre Pompidou, Paris; Victoria and Albert Museum, London; Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; The Cleveland Museum of Art; The Detroit Institutes of Arts; Milwaukee Art Museum; National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC; and Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, DC.
I think the Show exceeded peoples expectations, noted Stephen Bulger, the new President of AIPAD, and President, Stephen Bulger Gallery, Toronto. Collectors and museum professionals depend on AIPAD for the most important work on the market today in fine art photography. We were extremely pleased to work with the terrific people at AXA Art for the first time, and look forward to continued success.
By the end of the first day, Serge Plantureux, Paris, had sold 25 works adding up to $105,000 and the number increased to 50 works as the show closed on Sunday with prices ranging from $200 to $20,000. Winter Works on Paper, Brooklyn, sold 80 works ranging from $100 to $8,000, and six institutions were among the buyers. Edwynn Houk Gallery, New York, found the show strong and sold a number of photographs by Stephen Shore in the $24,000 range.
Robert Morat of Robert Morat Galerie, Hamburg, a guest exhibitor, commented that the Show looked great, and was impressed by a very good crowd that is interested and knowledgeable. The gallery sold 10 works with many more pending and said they were pleased with the considerable number of sales, adding but even if we hadnt sold a single piece, it would have been still worth it to be here with the great crowd and important encounters.
The turnout of the show was incredible and good material was presented, noted Missy Finger of PDNB Gallery, Dallas, which sold 13 works including Bill Owens Reagan on TV from 1971. Overall I feel this was a good fair for many dealers and collectors, she added.
Its a very good looking show that gets better ever year, was the report from Deborah Bell of Deborah Bell Photography, New York, which sold work from Marcia Resnick, Louis Faurer and Susan Paulsen. Barry Singer Gallery, Petaluma, CA, was pleased to sell 17 works including W. Eugene Smith and a Margaret Bourke-White for $25,000, and noted that the show looked great.
AIPADs best ever, noted Throckmorton Fine Art, Inc., New York, which sold more than ten works including Manuel Alvarez Bravos Smoke Stacks, 1929, for over $50,000. Gary Edwards Gallery, Washington, DC, sold 30 works between $1,000 and $5,000 and thought that attendance was excellent. Galeria Vasari, Buenos Aires, thought it was a great show and sold work by Annemarie Heinrich.
The audience has been great. This has been one of the best years, was the response from HackelBury Fine Art Limited, London, which sold 15 works in the $5,000 to $45,000 range including Structure of Thought, 2001-2009, by Doug & Mike Starn. Gallery 19/21, Gilford, CT, sold 12 prints to private collectors including young couples just starting their collections.
The show looked good and was crowded, noted Steven Kasher of Steven Kasher Gallery, New York. The best new collector I met came to see the rare book dealers and then came to my booth. The gallery sold work by Billy Name including, Flower Paintings at the Factory, 1960. Michael Shapiro of Michael Shapiro Photographs, San Francisco, said the show was good for me and reported selling 18 prints ranging from $1,250 to $48,000, including work by Minor White, André Kertész and Jefferson Hayman.
Lee Marks Fine Art, Shelbyville, IN, sold numerous prints of a work by Mariana Cook that stirred quite a bit of attention at the Show a portrait of Barack and Michelle Obama in their Chicago home from 1996. Yancey Richardson Gallery, New York, sold 20 works by Hellen van Meene, Masao Yamamoto, and Andrew Moore, among others.
Alan Klotz Gallery, New York, was pleased to sell close to 20 works including eight by Jonathan Torgovnik from his new book, Intended Consequences: Rwandan Children Born of Rape (Aperture 2009), with 25 percent of the proceeds going to the Foundation Rwanda.
One journalist remarked that four dealers said to him: Im happy, a phrase he says he does not hear too often from dealers.
To celebrate the 30th anniversary of AIPAD, this years Show offered a number of special events including two special exhibitions, panel discussions, and a lecture. The 30th anniversary exhibition, INNOVATION, showcased milestones in the history of photography from daguerreotypes to new media. Each gallery offered a work that reflected an innovation such as a technical or artistic development. A complete catalogue of the INNOVATION special exhibition, produced by AIPAD in collaboration with Aperture Foundation, was provided to all visitors at the Show and is now available at www.aipad.com/photoshow. The Center for the Legacy of Photography (CLP) offered Cause & Effect, an exhibition of vintage photographic prints drawing upon George Eastman Houses extensive collection.
Overflow crowds packed the Veterans Room of the Park Avenue Armory for a full day of panel discussions on Saturday, March 28, which featured leaders in the art world including Malcolm Daniel, The Metropolitan Museum of Art; Anne E. Havinga, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; Grant B. Romer, George Eastman House; Charlotte Cotton, Los Angeles County Museum of Art; Vince Aletti, critic and curator; and artists and filmmakers including Timothy Greenfield-Sanders, Albert Maysles, and Bruce Davidson.
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Founded in 1979, The Association of International Photography Art Dealers (AIPAD) is celebrating the 30th anniversary of the organization in 2009. AIPAD represents more than 120 of the worlds leading galleries in fine art photography. The organization is dedicated to creating and maintaining the highest standards of scholarship and ethical practice in the business of exhibiting, buying and selling fine art photography. More information is available at www.aipad.com.