05 5 / 2012
Do art fairs generally work on a first-come, first-served basis? If I walk into an art fair, and I’m an absolute nobody, and there’s a pretty important work by a pretty important contemporary artist, and I want to buy it, and I have the money, and it hasn’t already been sold, is there an implicit art-fair promise that I can do that?
Here’s my hypothesis: art fairs are successful not because the format is particularly great, and not because galleries are otherwise particularly intimidating, but because fairs are the only place in the art world where someone willing to pay the asking price for an unsold artwork can be assured of being able to buy that artwork, right there, on the spot. All that dealer crap about placing works in good collections goes out the window.
Or, is the elitism still there, hidden beneath the surface, and if I want to buy that Elizabeth Peyton at Gavin Brown, they’ll just tell me it’s already sold, even if it isn’t?
- disapproves likes this
- rickwebb said: They stagger the openings, so the “important” people get to go on an earlier day, but if it’s still there, unsold, on the day your “class” of people are allowed into the show, yes, you can buy it, first come, first served.
- miggedymac answered: yea I think so :)
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- pejmanyousefzadeh answered: I would think that if you have the money to pay the asking price, then the piece is yours. Just like any other transaction.
- scatterall answered: No, you’re right. I grew up at juried art fairs. If an artist doesn’t want to sell a piece, they stick a note on it or leave it home.
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- ryanbrown answered: sure.
- uma-pequena-garota-sensivel answered: yes
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