Occupying Offices: Independent vs. Spring/Break
By PAUL LASTER, Mar. 2017
Armory Arts Week brings the touring art circus to town—without the live animals.
The Armory Show, which focuses on contemporary art, looks better than ever under the leadership of new director Benjamin Genocchio this year; it’s sister fair VOLTA, which is celebrating its 10th anniversary, shines a spotlight on new art; the ADAA Art Show offers a smart, blue-chip selection of galleries, which mix classic modernism with chic contemporary art; NADA returns to a March schedule with a new venue and a fresh supply of cutting-edge art, while Art on Paper continues to hold fort at its former digs further downtown and SCOPE hangs on at its new but smaller home, the Metropolitan Pavilion.
Two fairs that always excite are Independent, which is tastefully back this year at Spring Studios, a onetime Verizon office building, and Spring/Break Art Show, which amusingly occupies two full floors of empty office space at 4 Times Square, the old Condé Nast Building, for the first time.
Standout solos at the eighth edition of Independent, which features 50 international exhibitors from 20 art capitals worldwide, are photos and an altered globe by Pictures Generation artist Barbara Bloom at David Lewis, Derrick Adams’s stylish collage portraits at Tilton Gallery and sculptures and paintings of ramshackle houses by Beverly Buchanan at Andrew Edlin Gallery.
Up at Spring/Break Art Show, things get funkier as Noah Scalin constructs an anamorphic portrait of Helen Keller from an enormous pile of old clothes, Jude Tallichet floats a piano made from crumpled aluminum foil in a closet-size workspace, Sean Fader papers a foyer with professionally photoshopped social media profile pictures of himself as everything from an astronaut to a doctor and Eve Sussman and Simon Lee recreate an old fashioned barber shop—complete with a barber cutting hair.