Photo Flash: Third Edition of Art Southampton Opens to Huge Success
The third edition of Art Southampton, the leading international contemporary and modern art fair for acquiring investment quality works of art opened last night with huge success, where top collectors, curators, art advisors and influencers kicked off the weekend-long event. Taking place on the 18-acre estate behind the Southampton Elks Lodge, the Platinum VIP saw over 1,500 top collectors of the East End, and throughout the elegant evening, attendance exceeded last year's VIP Preview of 4,200 guests. Scroll down for photos!
Art Southampton returns at the height of the social and cultural season, and is most acclaimed for bringing a unique assortment of world class art complimented by leading luxury purveyors. The Platinum VIP Preview served as the first opportunity for established collectors to acquire desirable blue-chip and emerging artworks from international art galleries with a strong focus on the 20th and 21st centuries. The collection of works highlights a variety of media including paintings, photography, prints, drawings, design, video art, sculpture and indoor and outdoor curated projects.
The extensive 100,000 square-foot pavilion was filled with VIP guests viewing works by more than 660 artists from over 43 countries. Champagne was flowing at the Ruinart Champagne Bar in the Maserati VIP Lounge curated by Luxe Interiors + Design and designed by Mitchell Gold & Bob Williams. Collectors mingled, enjoyed flutes of Ruinart Champagne, nibbled on lobster rolls and salmon bites, catered by Southampton Social Club. Guests admired the stunning GRAFF diamond-filled vitrines as statuesque models adorned in magnificent GRAFF jewels strolled though the aisles.
Among the distinguished guests were Wilbur and Hilary Geary Ross, Audrey Gruss, art advisor Kim Heirston, David and Simone Levinson, Parrish Art Museum Director Terrie Sultan, Patricia Duff, Richard Cohen, Walter Noel, Melanie Wambold, Katherine and Daniel Boulud, Rod and Judy Gilbert, Phillip Bloch, Jean Shafiroff, Patrick McMullan, Ramona Singer, Richard Johnson and Sessa von Richthofen, Eleanora Kennedy, Sam Rivers, interior design team Elizabeth Hagins and Richard Mortimer, Heather Mnuchin, Cheri Kaufman and Bill Sclight,Robert Chaloner, CEO & President Southampton Hospital, Cassandra Seidenfeld, Mayor of Southampton Mark Epley and his wife Marianne, Alexandra Fairweather, famed fashion photographer Robert Farber, Karl Willmers, Director Nassau County Museum of Art among others.
"The opening was well attended and spirited. We saw strong interest in many works by vintage names in abstract expressionism, such as Sam Francis, Robert Motherwell, and Joseph Conrad," commented Hollis Taggart, owner of the eponymous gallery. By the end of the evening, Taggart had recorded a sale of an Allan D' Arcangelo work entitled "Aspen" 1967 for over six figures.
Abby M. Taylor who has well respected galleries in New York and Greenwich emphasized Art Southampton's Platinum VIP preview drew the most discerning collectors saying, "We come to this fair because we know that there are extremely sophisticated collectors here whom we would usually see in New York. Not only do they know Calder but they also know who Richard Pousette - Dart is," referencing the abstract expressionist and founder of the New York School.
Jess De La Hunty with UK's Other Criteria - founded by Damien Hirst - echoed her feeling by stating, "Art Southampton and its sister fair Art Miami are great fairs precisely because they draw a really educated audience who knows what they are looking at. For example, the collectors in attendance tonight know all about Don Brown and come here specifically to purchase his work."
New to Art Southampton this year is Catinca Tabacaru Gallery from New York's Lower East Side and known for is international roster of young, emerging, and established artists. Director of Sales Lauren Licata was extraordinarily impressed with the fair and delighted to report, "We sold three works and have many on hold."
Unlike many art fair previews that become largely social events, Art Southampton's preview was decidedly different as most of the booths were filled with collectors inquiring about specific artists.
There were far less "Sunday strollers" and more serious collectors in search of their next acquisition. Many of the exhibiting works were purchased and placed on reserve throughout the VIP opening.
"There was overwhelming support of the arts and a heightened energy at last night's Platinum VIP Preview, " said Nick Korniloff, Director of Art Southampton. "We saw a huge turnout of top international collectors, museum curators, advisers and notables from the art community and are thrilled to have them here to enjoy the finest works of art in an elegant environment. I feel honored to be surrounded by such a wonderful group of galleries, sponsors, partners, artists and guests who made this such a successful evening."
Photo Credit: Tom Kochie
Marianne and Mark Epley, Mayor of Southampton Village
Lana Berkane, Anna Saler & Tatiana Likhina model jewels by Graff Diamonds
Amy Kane and Karl Willers, Director Nassau County Museum of Art
Interior design partners Richard Mortimer & Elizabeth Hagins
Melanie Wambold and Gregory D'Elia
Judy & Rod Gilbert
Kristin Mackie, Kevin Berlin and Jaclyn Walsh
Henri Barguirdjian, Marianne Lafiteau and Palmer Hudson
Artist James Fahnestock, Tom Fitzmaurice, Frederick Mayer, Roger Parades
Tripoli Patterson, Eric Firestone and Kimberly Goff
Kim Heirston and Audrey Gruss
Entrance to Art Southampton Pavilion
Jean Shafiroff photo bombed by Keith Haring
Sara Herbert-Galloway with artist Peter Tunney, from whom she recently commissioned a painting
Artist Rodolfo Edwards and Yael Rosenblut
Artist Suzanne LaFleur