1:54 Contemporary African Art Fair
159 Pioneer Street, Brooklyn, until 7 May
Just down the road from the fair, Red Hooks Labs (133-135 Imlay Street) is presenting an exhibition of works by the Malian photographer Malick Sidibé. The show, The Eye of Modern Mali, is organised with 1:54 and the Parisian gallery MAGNIN-A and looks at the artist’s depictions of the people of Mali in the period just after independence in 1960. “Sidibé paved the way for a looser, more candid style of photography decades before any kind of street photography,” says Touria El Glaoui, 1:54’s founding director. An earlier iteration of the show was presented at 1:54 in London last October.
Art New York and Context
Pier 94, 55th Street and 12th Avenue, until 7 May
artnyfair.com and contextnyfair.com
To mark the 30th anniversary of Andy Warhol’s death, the Alfstad & Contemporary gallery is presenting photographs taken by Christophe von Hohenberg of the artist’s memorial service in New York in 1987. Among the guests that day were Tom Wolfe, Keith Haring and Yoko Ono. “It marked the end of era,” says the gallery’s founder, Sam Alfstad. Meanwhile, Pablo Helguera (a contributor to The Art Newspaper) is presenting a project from which all profits will go to various charitable organisations. “The artwork is nothing but a certificate of what that cause [that the funds go to] is”, he says. The work is titled All Proceeds.
Collective Design Fair
550 Washington Street, until 7 May
The landscape architect Brook Klausing has designed an indoor garden as a respite from the fair. The space, built in part of timber salvaged from the Rockaway boardwalk after Hurricane Sandy, includes planters with flowering perennials and trellising ivy. “The overall feeling is stolen from the storyboard of the set designer that created Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry,” Klausing says, noting that he aims for simplicity that nevertheless commands attention.
603 Vanderbilt Avenue, Brooklyn, until 6 May
The scrappy Fridge art fair returns this year in a new venue—the Branded Saloon, a bar in the Prospect Heights area of Brooklyn. This year’s theme is Love and Torture, which the fair organisers landed on after trying to come up with an idea that captured the moment. Initially, love alone was to be the focus, but “we managed to start torturing ourselves over politics again and, half-kidding, I said, ‘OK, it’s got to be Love and Torture’”, says Linda DiGusta, Fridge’s curator. A pop-up section of the fair will take place at the nearby Nu Hotel on Smith Street.
Salon Zürcher Africa
33 Bleecker Street, until 7 May
The 19th edition of this mini-fair is also the second edition of Salon Zürcher Africa. Five galleries from New York, Paris, Nairobi and Addis Ababa in Ethiopia will present works by artists including Malick Sidibé, Nelson Makamo and Onyis Martin. Portraiture is a key theme, says the dealer Sitor Senghor, whose eponymous Parisian gallery will be included in the fair. Although each exhibitor will have his or her own presentation, Senghor says each will focus on work that focuses on “personhood” and “the importance of being real and alive”.
Spring/Break Bklyn Immersive
300 Flatbush Avenue Extension, 7-14 May
Large-scale work is the focus of the first edition of Spring Break Brooklyn, an offshoot of the Spring Break fair founded in 2009 by Andrew Gori and Ambre Kelly. “We’re deliberately shifting from our typical model of the ‘art fair’ with [a] focus on immersive environments created with site-specific installations,” Gori says. Around a dozen artists, including Jason Peters, Grace Villamil and Melissa Godoy-Nieto will be included in a ground-floor space in downtown Brooklyn. “The goal remains the same,” Gori says: “activating non-traditional art spaces and providing a free exhibition platform to curators and artists.”
Superfine! New York
459 West 14th Street, until 7 May
Twenty-three galleries plus 27 artists representing themselves will show work at the Superfine fair, which focuses on art priced at $1,000-$10,000. Affordability is a point of pride for the organisers and each exhibitor will show at least one work priced at less than $1,000. This allows an opening for artists representing themselves. “There’s also obviously a bigger risk as they have to cover rent, fair exhibition fees, and all other costs of owning a business, but the benefit is that, if they market their work and the gallery correctly, they’ll keep all of the take from work that is sold,” the fair’s founder and director, Alex Mitow.
Portal Art Fair
435 Broome Street, 3-8 May
Thirty artists are included in the second edition of the Portal art fair, which this year takes place in a 2,000 sq. ft space in SoHo. Artists range in style, from representational painters to photographers and sculptors. What brings the fair together, says one of the its co-founders, Antony Zito, is an emphasis on "how location, architecture, and context changes the experience of art and changes the way artists approach" their work. Among those included in the show are the Iranian-American painter Zahra Nazari and the New York-based German photographer Martina Kaendler.