Tucked away at the Park Avenue Armory uptown, the ADAA’s annual Art Show offers a more subdued fair experience versus the immense proceedings of the Armory Show across town. With less than half the number of participating galleries, and a more focused exhibition policy leaning towards solo artists and thematic presentations, the fair is a strong counterpart to the Armory, one that invites a lingering, open browsing experience below the Armory’s softly lit drill hall.
This year, the ADAA welcomes 72 galleries to its annual show for its 26th year of operation, including a number of galleries also on view at Piers 92 and 94 like David Zwirner and Sean Kelly, as well as a number of Armory Show holdouts, among them Marian Goodman, 303 Gallery and Metro Pictures, each of them bringing a carefully curated set of works to their booths this year.
Metro Pictures, which saw success last year with a set of photographs by Sara VanDerBeek, is again showing the artist’s work this year, a set of digital C-Prints and sculpture that continue her exploration of the structural interruptions of perception caused by digital editing, positioning and the image’s internal logic. David Zwirner, which is showing a diverse group of works at its Armory Show booth, has opted for a considerably more measured presentation here, opting for a series of works by Ad Reinhardt; minimal, black oil on paper works which have never before been exhibited in the US. This small selection of museum-quality works understandably feels like a flex of clout for the gallery, bringing together a set of works only seen together before in the Netherlands in 1966. In a winking response, 303 Gallery was showing a series of works by Jacob Kassay, directly inspired by Reinhardt’s approach to the canvas.
Similarly, Pace Gallery has brought out a stunning set of recent, holographic works by James Turrell, capitalizing on the artist’s landmark series of retrospectives last year. Shifting in color and form as the viewer passes by, Turrell’s works once again turn the artist’s unique sensibilities towards light and perception towards the flat plane. All five of the artist’s works were sold in the first hours of the fair. Other notable exhibitions include a Mitchell-Innes and Nash retrospective of the works of sculptor Anthony Caro, who passed away late last year, and an impressive selection of works by Kehinde Wiley on view at Sean Kelly’s booth.
Thematic exhibitions this year offered a striking counterpoint to the solo exhibitions on view, particularly an unexpected booth from John Berggruen Gallery. Alternating between the various geometric and formal interests of Mark diSuvero and Julie Mehretu with the more rough-hewn landscapes and portraiture of Richard Diebenkorn and Chuck Close, the booth offers a unique dialectic in contemporary painting practice. Matthew Marks also brings forward a strong series of works, pulling from its collection of pieces by Jasper Johns, Ellsworth Kelly, Gary Hume, Ken Price and more, the booth presents an intriguing inquiry into color and form as both element and muse.
Closing Sunday, the ADAA’s 2014 exhibition continues its reputation for a considered, well-curated alternative to the Armory Show across town, presenting museum quality collections of work along cohesive, inviting lines of inquiry.