The 16th annual International Fine Art Fair
takes place at the Park Avenue Armory in New York City from the May 1st-5th, 2009. This well-known showcase features over 700 years of fine art. It has always attracted institutional and private buyers and remains the only high end fair in the world devoted solely to paintings, drawings and sculpture. Exhibitors from the USA and Europe take part in the fair annually, enriching it with their own particular speciality, and in recent years there has been an increase in the participation of American dealers offering American art of the 19th and 20th centuries.
The variety of works of art on view span the centuries, from the early Renaissance right up to contemporary. Some illustrate how European art, has evolved, becoming increasingly secular after devoutly religious beginnings with exquisitely executed and invariably rare, gold ground panel paintings. From these early, devotional images, painted perhaps with a Virgin and Child, or depicting the life of a saint, the fair moves through the centuries to the modern world and the kaleidoscope of images produced in just about every style imaginable in the course of the 20th century by artists on both sides of the Atlantic.
The paintings, drawings and sculpture on view, include traditional scenes, some highly academic, others more decorative, possibly mythological and allegorical in subject, or perhaps landscapes and cityscapes views of New York City itself might appear among these. The range of subject matter is enormous and, as we move closer to our own time, its presentation often becomes increasingly abstract and less conventional. Major commissions for an important patron, may be seen alongside charmingly informal sketches or even untypical early works before an artist developed their trademark style. Large-scale paintings are offset by small jewel-like oils and watercolours; likewise with sculpture, the museum-destined bronze or marble, alongside a small maquette perhaps appealing to the private buyer.
While The International Fine Art Fair offers much that is of museum-quality, it also has a much wider appeal. This is also an ideal hunting ground for the new collector with a limited budget but looking for a quality purchase. Prices start at under $1000. At the upper end of the scale prices may rise to in excess of $10m, but irrespective of price tag, vetting means that the fair provides the most reassuring purchasing environment. Every exhibit is vetted for quality and authenticity before it can be offered for sale. The vetting committees provide an essential service at the fair, examining each and every work of art, their distinguished membership including specialists from both the museum and commercial art worlds.
Throughout its history, the fair has enjoyed the support of many of the worlds top fine art dealers and in 2009 there are many returnees, together with a number of newcomers. In a challenging economic environment globally, the organisers have put together a fair that remains focussed on quality not quantity, with a view to maintaining the fairs position as an important showcase in New York.
Dealers participate from Europe and America including Didier Aaron, Inc., (USA, UK, France); Daphne Alazraki Fine Art (USA), A.L.F.A. (France), Avery Galleries (USA), Babcock Galleries (USA), W.M. Brady & Co. (USA), Simon Capstick-Dale Fine Art (USA), Thomas Colville Fine Art (USA), Neal A. Fiertag (France), FraMonT (USA), Galerie Boulakia (France), Bernard Goldberg Fine Arts LLC (USA), Richard Green (UK), Hawthorne Fine Arts (USA), Heinley Fine Arts (USA), Hill-Stone (USA), MacConnal Mason Gallery (UK), McColl Fine Art (USA), Moretti Fine Art (Italy, UK & USA), Neffe-Degandt Fine Art (UK), Jill Newhouse (USA), Jean Paul Perrier Art Gallery (Spain), Questroyal Fine Art, LLC (USA) Schillay Fine Art, Inc. (USA), Schiller & Bodo European Paintings (USA) , The Sladmore Gallery (UK), Hollis Taggart Galleries (USA) , Vincent Vallarino Fine Art (USA), Vallejo Gallery (USA), Waterhouse & Dodd (London), Adam Williams Fine Art (USA) and Constance and David Yates (USA).
New exhibitors this year: Michael Altman Fine Art (USA) with 19th and 20th century American art; Jonathan Boos (USA) with 20th century art, primarily paintings including American Modernism and Social Realism; Rehs Galleries, Inc. (New York) with French, British and American artists who exhibited at the Paris Salon and Londons Royal Academy 1850-1920;Trinity House Fine Art (UK) with 19th and 20th century British and Continental paintings; Voena (UK & Italy) with Italian and French Old Masters, Classic Modernism and Contemporary art; Wienerroither & Kohlbacher (Vienna) with Austrian and International Modern art.