We attend some exhibitions because we expect to learn something new about art, antiques or various noteworthy collectibles, and some we go to because we hope to be surprised.
And that’s exactly what happened on Sunday at the newly named “Metro Curates,” a channeling of the Folk Art Show of yesteryear. The slightly off kilter photograph, the eccentric cabinet object, and the amazing folk art object came together for a few days in the Metropolitan Pavilion. New off the drawing board contemporary art seemed somewhat out of place, perhaps because it wasn’t weird enough, but there were plenty of old folk friends who filled that bill. Also somewhat startling was a wall of early works by William Baziotes at Susan Teller Gallery. Hadn’t seen those before and thought they seemed as far from Baziote’s mature style as does Roy Lichtenstein’s early work differ from his exploding Pop Art images.
Since the Estate of William Baziotes does not permit photographs of his work on display, we posed Ms. Teller in front of partial images of Hugh Mesnibov and Ann Ryan, whose estates she also handles.
Hours later, at the annual Winter Antiques Show at the 67th Street Armory, the splendor of the best in 18th/19th century furnishings, art and ceramics was revealed. Although the antiques market in general has declined, the Best of the Best never does, whether in fine or decorative art, and there were outstanding artifacts in this fair’s edition. I was particularly impressed by the gorgeous chandeliers and lighting fixtures, and some lovely paintings that fill the eye in the way that empty idea canvases do not. In front of a John Singer Sargent and a Childe Hassam painting are Fran Zeman and Ellen Epstein, both appraisers with ASA and RICS designations, and Alan Adelson, Assistant Director of the gallery founded by his father, Warren Adelson, and notable for work by Sargent and Mary Cassatt. Alan is among a new generation of art dealers to join the ranks of the many sons and daughters of established gallerists.
The Winter Antiques Show runs through much of this week, but if you were lucky enough to get there over the weekend you’ve missed the slough through the snow that lays ahead. Good luck.
By Elin Lake-Ewald