Your Last Minute Guide to Frieze NYC Art Fair Weekend


It might not get as much publicity (nor as much high-end art-world money mayhem) as March's Armory Art Fair and its many attendant satellites, but the Frieze Art Fair, now in its fourth spring here in New York City, may even be more fun, with more interesting art, that anything that goes on over at the piers these days. And this despite its seemingly isolated Randall's Island location! Or maybe that's why Frieze, to me, has become the more exciting annual adventure these days, because it almost feel like a day trip, like you're really going somewhere, especially if you take the ferry over? And if you don't have time this weekend to commit to Frieze (or if you want to see even more art!), two additional fairs are also setting up shop, the brash Select NYC, held in Chelsea; and the funky NADA, near the South Street Seaport. Here's a quick look at what you can expect…       


Welcome To Frieze Art Fair

Frieze NYC once again takes place under (and around) the sprawling white tent on the eastern shore of Randall's Island, with some 200 galleries from around the world all showing off their most sale-able artists. Because make no mistake, like the Armory (and every other) art fair, for the galleries putting the work on display, Frieze is about money. Which isn't a bad thing if, like me, there's no way you could ever afford anything here; in fact, it's always kind of telling what everyone chooses to put front and center in their booths, and it means it's all pretty attention-grabbing stuff. And don't worry about feeling stranded on Randall's without any proper nourishment, because the food vendors here are the best in the business–Roberta's, Dimes, Court Street Grocers, Morgenstern's Finest Ice Cream, to name just a few–and the prices are never TOO gouge-y. For all the information you need about admission (tickets are $44), hours, and how to get there, see the Frieze NYC 2015 website.


The New Art Dealers Alliance and Select Art Fair

For a different perspective on how art fairs are done, check out NADA or, the New Art Dealers Alliance, in the cavernous Basketball City building by the river, a few blocks north of the Seaport. With its determinedly more indie feel–in the raw, temporary-walls setup; in the art itself, often by early-career artists and put on display by more than 100 local and international galleries; and in the crowd of art fans it attracts–NADA is both refreshing and engaging. Oh and it's also completely free. Finally, in its second year in New York, the Select Art Fair takes over the old DIA building on far-west 22nd Street with some 50 galleries–including a whole floor's-worth of Brooklyn spaces!–emphasizing work from their emerging and mid-career artists. I didn't go last year, but early reports suggest this is a somewhat raucous affair. Tickets are $20, though, so take that into account when making your art-viewing decisions this weekend. 

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