Among New York art fairs, , , and command the first week of May. But a new player arrives Friday with 200 art and design objects from over 30 galleries: It's called and it opens to the public at 4 p.m. at 99 Scott Street in Brooklyn and runs through May 5.
Founder Abby Bangser, formerly the artistic director of Frieze Art Fairs for the Americas and Asia, is relying on her in-depth industry knowledge to create an experience that she hopes will be different from the standard white-walled affair.
“What I’ve always valued most is the community gathering aspect of the art fairs,” Bangser said. “My focus for Object & Thing is to take that sense of community and make it accessible to everyone. The price point for art and objects will be about $1,000 to $50,000 and we aren’t charging galleries entrance fees. Instead, we assume the entry risks for the gallery and in return we receive a portion of each sell fee. This allows smaller and emerging galleries to participate in a way that they wouldn’t be able to normally.”
Bangser brought in renowned architect Rafael de Cardenas to design the fair, which will display all of the objects together—rather than organized by gallery or era—on industrial pillars (and nothing will be hung on the walls).
"It's about taking things apart and then putting them back together like you would in a domestic environment," de Cardenas says. "It's a beautiful raw space so we didn't even install artificial light; it has natural light that will change throughout the day." Brooklyn florist, , will provide flowers and food designer will create an installation for the VIP section.
Truth be told, the list of collaborators doubles as a who’s who of New York's creative demimonde. Mast books and Omar Sosa of Apartamento magazine are curating a selection of out-of-print, vintage, and rare books at the newsstand. Farm-to-table restaurant will debut its line of pottery for sale at Blue Hill Market, alongside a boutique space with pop-up versions of concept shops like (L.A.), (San Francisco), and (London), where price points dip down to below $100.
The art and furniture objects themselves range from the 1930s to present; some pieces were made specifically for the fair. In this new arrangement, ceramics by space-obsessed artist could sit next to Memphis masters Ettore Sottsass and Peter Shire, while a chess set by Carl Aubock might be posed with chairs by Misha Kahn. Or, as Bangser hinted, “some things may all be stacked up together!” Participating galleries include , , , , ,, and .
Naturally there will be no shortage of food and drink, with a natural wine bar and pop-ups of and as well as a preview of Daylight, a new café.
After visitors have had a chance to scope out the wares on Friday, will launch 10 a.m. Saturday, May 4, so that those not attending Object & Thing can still buy from the fair. “We wanted it to be super easy, even including delivery options so that you can buy art exactly the way you would buy a handbag from Barneys,” Bangser explained. Clearly, she knows her audience. For hours and more information, .