From the minds that created the Hamptons Virtual Art Fair and ArtHamptons, comes an astounding new art event that can be experienced in Southampton this weekend or from anywhere via virtual reality. ShowHamptons presents the Hamptons Fine Art Fair.
The inaugural fine art fair features artwork from 70 national and international galleries, with 51 in-person booths to visit, plus online-excusive booths for the far-away galleries who couldn’t make it to the Hamptons this year. In total, the fair features over 1,000 pieces by more than 400 respected artists, coming in at over $100 million worth of art available for immediate acquisition.
The Hamptons Fine Art Fair takes place on the picturesque grounds of the Southampton Arts Center, a property steeped in history and once home to the Samuel Longstreth Parrish Art Museum, which the art fair’s executive director, Rick Friedman, finds all too exciting.
“Most art fairs are held in big conference centers, but we’re in an arts center that was formally the site of the Parrish Art Museum for like a hundred years,” the ArtHamptons pioneer says. “I’m honored to be able to do this with the Southampton Arts Center on their grounds. I think the art world has acknowledged and agreed upon that — it’s really rare, it’s very odd and very special. … As of that, we feel that we have an obligation to really provide a curated, high-end, elegant art fair.”
Building off the concepts of last year’s inaugural Hamptons Virtual Art Fair, ShowHamptons’ first digitized art fair that featured more than 2,000 works in a 2D and 3D event space, the Hamptons Fine Art Fair incorporates cutting-edge VR technology to create a fully simulated three-dimensional art fair environment for virtual visitors to navigate as if attending the physical fair. “This show is not just for Hamptonites anymore; it’s for anyone in the United States or around the world, if you will,” Friedman says. “I don’t think any other art fair has ever done that!” The online fair will remain live until November 30, 2021.
Featured Hamptons galleries include Black & White Gallery / Project Space in Southampton, C Fine Art in Bridgehampton, Colm Rowan Fine Art in East Hampton, Janet Lehr Fine Art in East Hampton, Julie Keyes Art in Sag Harbor, Lawrence Fine Art in East Hampton, Loves Art Gallery in Southampton, Mark Borghi Fine Art in Bridgehampton, Quogue Gallery in Quogue, Roman Fine Art in East Hampton and Willoughby Gallery in East Hampton.
And don’t miss your chance to take home an original or print from the estate of the legendary M.C. Escher. Through the virtual event space, art collectors can also view and purchase works from participating international galleries such as Art2day in India, Blendlatino in Argentina, Metaverse Gallery in Brazil and Retrospect Galleries in Australia.
The timing of the Hamptons Fine Art Fair comes as a celebration of the booming art scene in the Hamptons. “It’s a celebration of the major wave that has hit not only Southampton, but also East Hampton,” Friedman says. “It’s becoming the new hotbed for art in the United States.” He adds that the timing is also ideal because of the recent real estate boom, which created a wave of new homeowners with bare walls to fill.
This year’s fair also celebrates hot emerging artists, the blue-chip masters, second-generation abstract expressionists, contemporary women artists and accomplished Black artists. “We watch the trends in the art world, and right now there are several trends — and one of the trends is Black artists, a lot of promotion and galleries wanting to show and people buy from African American artists, both post-war and current,” Friedman explains. He’s especially excited that the fair and Ethan Cohen Gallery are offering a rare chance to purchase works by American-Ivorian artist Aboudia, who has quickly become one of the hottest up-and-comers of the decade.
The celebrations don’t stop there. Internationally acclaimed artist and photorealism pioneer Audrey Flack is being honored with the 2021 Lifetime Achievement Award, presented by Hollis Taggart Galleries. “Museums have really recognized her now, and I think that she is probably one of the most, if not the most, acclaimed, accomplished living woman artist — 70 years of art,” Friedman says. “It’s about time that we give her a Lifetime Achievement Award; she’s certainly deserving of it!”
In addition to Flack’s award, Edward Bekkerman of ABA Gallery and Bruce Dorfman of Elizabeth Clement Fine Art are being honored as 2021 Featured Artists. And finally, Dr. Harvey Manes has been named the 2021 Art Collector of the Year.
General admission tickets are $30 per day and include access to the sculpture park and art pavilions (minus the VIP lounge), food truck and seating area, as well as the various after parties taking place each night. With dinner reservations hard to come by in Southampton, visitors are welcome to come for the delicious food, stay for the exquisite art. A portion of proceeds benefits the Southampton Arts Center.
Hamptons Fine Art Fair runs Sept. 2–5. For tickets and more info, visit hamptonsfineartfair.com.