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Armory Show 2006

The art market is currently living the best moment in its history. The Armory Show 2005 announced over $45 million sales and over 40.000 visitors. Art Basel Miami Beach surpassed all expectations last december. And just a few weeks ago, ARCO closed with record figures of almost 200.000 visitors and an increase of about 13% in sales. After the professional preview on thursday, The Armory Show 2006 opened yesterday 10th March. According to the number of collectors at the venue, art market euphoria shows no signs of decay.

Barry McGee at DEITCH PROJECTS (Armory Show)

As it lately happens at such fairs, just a few hours after the opening a few galleries had sold out. At White Cube, Emmanuel Perrotin, Lisson and Arndt & Partner it was almost impossible to speak to the directors -too busy attending the many and important collectors walking by-. Before 4 o clock, Hauser & Wirth had already sold out the whole stand with works by debuting Chinese artists Zhang Enli. Also sold out fast works by Paul P at Thaddaeus Ropac and Jonathan Meese at Krinzinger and Stuart Shave/Modern Art. Collectors are highly informed and have been making studied decisions on works they interested to buy -said Adam Sheffer at Cheim & Read. Usual gallery collectors have the opportunity at fairs to see new artists - said Eigen+Art directors- who showed works by Uwe Kowski and Jehudit Sasportas alongside works by well-established Jorg Herold.


There is no doubt that fairs play a very important role to promote artists. Many collectors prefer the buzz and comfort of buying at them. Fairs allow them to see a concentrated selection of international artists. That s why there are more fairs everyday -Said Helen Allen, Pulse s director, which also opened yesterday. Many collectors and curators attending the Armory Show are also coming to this fair. Pulse is a well organized fair, which has great quality. Its smaller size makes it comfortable for collectors -agreed gallerists Robert Springer (Berlin), Magda Danysz (Paris) and Priska Juschka (New York). And according to sales realized just a few hours after the opening, it has little to envy the Armory Show. Michael Schultz soon sold works by Seo and Cornelia Schleime. While Vik Muniz and Candida Hoefer also worked well at Rena Bransten.


DIVA and Scope completed the fair arena. The first one, dedicated exclusively to video and digital art, opened its doors on thursday night, with great public attendance. About 40 international galleries, from New York (Claire Olivier) to Shanghai (ShangART), from Madrid (Begona Malone) to Montreal (Pierre Francoise Ouellette) showed recent video and digital works at the Embassy Suites Hotel rooms. Just a few blocks away from the Armory Show, Scope presented for its first time ouside a hotel, a great selection of emerging artists. International galleries such as Christopher Cutts (Toronto), Thomas Erben (New York) and Schuster (Frankfurt) offered visitors a young, fresh and affordable variety of works. In conclusion, there are more than 3000 aritsts, 300 galleries, dozens of parties and events to see in New York these days. It seems there is market and place enough for them. The question is, is there time?

Artfacts.Net Booth at the Armory Show (left: Patricia Blaso, right: Stine Albertsen, artworks: Thomas Hellstrom)

Text by: Raul Martinez


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