Filed under: Art Fairs, Art Market, Art World | Tags: Art Chicago, art fair, Expo Chicago, Josh Reams, NEXT ART CHICAGO, NEXT Art Fair, Robin Dluzen, Steven Zevitas
New American Paintings headed to the Windy City over the weekend to check out Expo Chicago, which was, in effect, an attempted reboot of Art Chicago in its glory days. Art Chicago was the first art fair that NAP publisher/editor, Steven Zevitas, ever attended. That was 17 years ago…
Art Chicago’s history has been a roller coaster ride. In its heyday, it was the preeminent art fair in the country, and it attracted gallerists and collectors from all over the world. By the late 1990s, though, things started to change. The emergence of The Armory Show in New York and then Miami Basel zapped the life out of the fair, and by the mid-2000s, Art Chicago was teetering on the edge of ruin. In 2006, the Merchandise Mart (MMPI) stepped in to save the fair at the last moment when it became clear that the fair’s tent would not be ready in time. From 2006 – 2011, Art Chicago (Artropolis) was held at the gargantuan Merchandise Mart Building. For many years our magazine had a booth, and it’s where Zevitas participated in four installments of the NEXT Art Fair with his own project, Steven Zevitas Gallery. The gallery was supposed to participate for the 5th year in a row, but MMPI pulled the plug on the fair earlier this year.
A greeting to website visitors on ArtChicago.com
Filed under: Art Fairs, Art Market, Art World | Tags: Art Chicago, Chicago, NEXT Art Fair
We just received word that the long-running Art Chicago fair, which was going to be combined this year with the NEXT Fair (with a rebranded name of Next Art Chicago), has been canceled. An email from organizers informs us that, “After a thorough analysis of the art fair landscape, Merchandise Mart Properties, Inc. [MMPI] has determined not to move forward with the production of the 2012 edition of Next Art Chicago, and that Chicago will not remain a primary focus of its art fair business activities.”
The Merchandise Mart continues, stating that, “…While Chicago is home to a thriving arts community, including galleries, world-class museums, theaters, arts-related organizations, along with thousands of art enthusiasts, it is our conclusion that the great majority of the art fair market in the United States has gravitated toward the coasts. This is where MMPI will be reallocating its considerable resources.”
New American Paintings will continue to keep you updated as we learn more about the closing of the fair. Follow us on Twitter @newampaintings for the latest.
Merchandise Mart entrance, Chicago. Photo Courtesy Art Next Chicago
Filed under: Art Fairs, Chicago, On the Road | Tags: Andrew Katz, Art Chicago, Chicago, NEXT, NEXT Art Fair, Obey Giant, Shepard Fairey
Shepard Fairey poses with New American Paintings #93 and posse, Dan, Nick, and Z
Being a student at RISD, it’s impossible to not know the name Shepard Fairey. Even back in 2001, when I was studying there, he was already a legend and referenced often by the students and faculty. Some stories true, some total myths. His stickers were passed around like nudie mags in an elementary school boys’ bathroom. They seemed to appear out of no where, like magic. He must have still had someone on the “inside,” dishing them out to students.
I’ve also had the pleasure of working with Shepard at my own gallery, back in 2004, moments before he went from famous to mega-famous. Though our working relationship was brief, he is always gracious and extremely friendly whenever I see him. He’s that way to total strangers too, which is ultimately why he’s liked so much by his fans.
I was thrilled to learn Shepard would be around for the NEXT art fair opening, DJing the opening party. It’s always great to see him and his posse (shout out to Dan, Nick, and Z), as I’ve gotten to know them well over the past few years as well. Glad to pop off these shots while he was in action. Hope you enjoy, it was a great night at NEXT.
Were you there? Any favorite artworks to speak of? Let us know. More pics after the jump!
—Andrew Katz, Associate Publisher
Shepard Fairey spins at the 2011 NEXT opening