AIPAD - THE PHOTOGRAPHY SHOW - PARK AVENUE ARMORY, NEW YORK
The 36th annual photography fair will be the last one to be held in the Park Avenue Armory. The Association of International Photography Art Dealers will present next year at the piers on the Hudson River. I think many will miss having this show in this venue. The scale of the show and the space itself seem so perfectly suited. I suppose that means there will be more than the 86 galleries which showed this year. That could be a good thing.
This was one of the best I’ve seen recently insofar as there was unfamiliar work by familiar artists, both vintage and contemporary. Among the standouts in the vintage category was at Paul M. Hertzmann - a fascinating group of 9 vintage silver prints made from glass negatives which combined photograms, collage, drawing and painting by the Japanese experimental photographer El-Q (Sugita Hideo) from the 1950’s. There were some arresting photograms by Maurice Tabard from the 1930”s at Gallery 19/21 as well as work by Carl Strüwe from the 20’s and 30’s at Stephen Kasher Gallery which looks remarkably contemporary.
Hacklebury showed William Klein photograms made in the 1950‘s which are exuberant calligraphic images translated into painting with light. Also shown were stained glass pieces based on “the no mind not thinks no things things” series of leafless tree silhouettes by the Starn Twins. Robert Klein Gallery showed a gorgeous and revelatory color print by Horst P. Horst from 1947 entitled “Suit and Headdress by Schiaparelli”. I had never seen any color work by Horst. Needless to say, it had the same brilliance in composition and drama as his black and white work.
The show felt like a delicate balance between the revered and the fresh without excessive emphasis on the oversized and overarchingly “new”. It was accessible and varied and full of work to be admired and stimulated by. I hope it does not lose that quality when it moves to its new location. But everything must evolve so we will have to follow it and hope for the best.