Hitting Rock Bottom

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From the Bottom Up: Rethinking Art Galleries in a Commodity- and Event-Dominated Ecosystem
Friday, March 7, 2014
Armory Show, Open Forum, New York, NY

“Welcome to the Armory Show TED Talks,” joked Christian Viveros-Fauné, a New York–based art critic who was the moderator of today’s panel. He said that everyone onstage for “From the Bottom Up: Rethinking Art Galleries in a Commodity and Event Dominated Ecosystem” is or was involved in exhibiting in a gallery situation or with an art fair, except for Georgina Adam, an editor-at-large for the Art Newspaper and a columnist for the Financial Times and BBC.com.1 If only the panel had been, like a TED Talk, uplifting and inspirational. When the dust settled, the speakers neither established a historical assessment of the art fair’s ascendance over the past twenty years, nor  interrogated—and I choose this word purposefully because of Viveros-Fauné recent cynical, under researched rants—the perceived state of the art market and art world.2 While I recognize the panelists witnessed the rise of the art fair firsthand, their recollections of the recent past were grounded in anecdote, hearsay, and received wisdom.

1 The panel was presented by an organization called Talking Galleries, the International Platform for Gallerists.

2 See, for example, Christian Viveros-Fauné, “How Uptown Money Kills Downtown Art,” Village Voice, February 6, 2013; and “Art’s Big, Dirty Secret,” Village Voice, January 1, 2014.

In Terms Of count: 3.


Charlie Finch, “Survival Strategies,” Artnet, January 12, 2009.

Steven Zevitas, “The Things We Think and Do Not Say, or Why the Art World is in Trouble,” Huffington Post, February 28, 2014.

Talking Galleries, “TG New York Highlights,” Talking Galleries, unknown post date.

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Funding for In Term Of has been provided by the Arts Writers Grant Program.