May 02, 2009

The International Fine Art Fair 2009

Art fair devotees have one more opportunity to get their fix before the long summer hiatus forces us to either roam abroad or find other cultural outlets to fill the gap! Until Tuesday May 5th, British fair organizers Brian and Anna Houghton present the 15th edition of The International Fine Art Fair at the Park Avenue Armory.

Although somewhat reduced in size from previous years, this version continues the tradition of showing artworks spanning the centuries and the globe, all vetted and all for sale. The European and American exhibitors include well known dealers in Old Master through Modern paintings, sculpture and works on paper, with an emphasis on 19th Century French paintings.

Francois-Joseph dit Luigi Loir (1845-1916) French
"Carousel at the Port Dorée"
Courtesy of Schiller & Bodo European Paintings

Some of my favorites included a small format oil painting of an eggplant by Georgia O'Keeffe on the stand of Michael Altman Fine Art and the gouache of an Art Deco woman by Georges Lepape at Neal A. Fiertag. There were also several small but charming oils of Belle Epoque Paris street scenes by Eugene Laloue at various dealers. A new discovery for me was the work of Charles Spencelayh (1865-1958), an English artist in the Academic Style. Two paintings on the stand of Trinity House Fine Art caught my eye - "His Old Wedding Hat", 1943, and the autobiographical "A Part of My Stock in Trade", 1948.

If not the high-energy fair of previous years, this remains an elegant and worthwhile exhibition and a fitting send off to the Spring 2009 New York art season.

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