Of all the Armory Show spin-off fairs opening this week in New York, none are as overtly subversive of the original as THE (UN)FAIR, a one-time pop-up exhibition opening within walking distance at a 19th century former manufacturing building. With sledgehammer subtlety, its name suggests the ultimate alternative from the more exclusive and commercially-saturated art fairs of the week.
Organized by art consultant Jennifer Wallace and artist Mikel Glass, the exhibition of 100 artworks opens Wednesday and claims to offer more thoughtful, tightly-curated installations in contrast to the sometimes overwhelming labyrinths of their perennial counterparts.
THE (UN)FAIR is a break from the rigidity of cookie-cutter art fair booths. It celebrates amazing art by a handful of prestigious artists… the environment is immersive, the work is installed with connectivity between the artists, and the particularities of the hauntingly beautiful space itself are highlighted through an innovative lighting installation.
In addition to painting, music and performance, there will be hand-picked “elevator comedians” ushering guests up the freight elevators to the space, free stretch limo shuttles moving potential buyers to and from (but mostly from) the Armory show, and of course, plenty of Ben & Jerry’s ice cream on hand — the fair’s main sponsor.