Have any of you been to Affordable Art Fair NYC? I've never been, but I hope to one year! It looks like a fun event. We thought about going to the one about to start (September 13-17) but decided we wanted to celebrate our son's first birthday at home. It was the right decision for our family, but that doesn't mean I'm not suffering from a bit of FOMO right now.
Affordable Art Fair was founded by Will Ramsey in 1999, and has grown to ten locations worldwide, but only one in the US. Affordable Art Fair NYC is scheduled in the spring and fall each year. AAFs showcase a variety of contemporary paintings, original prints, photographs, and sculptures from both emerging and established artists. I'm especially intrigued by the fact that many of the exhibiting galleries are not in the US, so American visitors get exposed to a lot of artists they might not otherwise be aware of.
The term "affordable" is used rather loosely, with prices ranging from $100 to $10,000. However, half of the pieces at each booth are priced under $5,000. While $5K doesn't scream "affordable" to me, I don't think it's an absurd price point for original art. Even if I'm just browsing (as I'd likely to be at AAF), I always appreciate having an idea the price range before heading out to an art gallery or event.
In addition to the somewhat misleading name, another drawback of AAF NYC is that the event itself isn't free. General admission tickets are $20 at the door ($18 if you order online), which strikes me as fair, since expos like this are expensive to put on, but understandably not everyone wants to pay money for an opportunity to spend more money. I can imagine the ticket price being even more irritating to people who attend with a different definition of "affordable" in their mind. I've also read several reviews about how crowded the Fairs are, despite the paid admission. As someone with an aversion to crowds, I consider this a small drawback as well.
Here are some examples of the kinds of pieces you could get at Affordable Art Fair NYC (plus several more shown on their Preview page):
1. Andrew Baines [$1250] 2. Hana Moore [$2900]
3. Hyun Suk Kim [$3500] 4. Kelly Grace [$3400]
5. Daniel Sueiras [$500] 6. Heesu Choi [$1100]
7. Miguel Vallinas [starting at $1600] 8. Veronica Green [$3500]
Collectors, have you been to any AAFs before? What was your impression, whether you were just browsing or left with a great new contemporary art piece? Any tips for first-timers?