When NBC anchor Brian Williams recently went on a satirical tirade about the New York Times' fascination with the hip wonders of Brooklyn — a wild borough distinguished by "open air markets, like trading posts in the early Chippewa tribe," where there are "artisanal cheeses for sale on the street" — it appears some in the art-bazaar business were listening. Verge, the satellite hotel fair that has appeared in Miami Beach during Art Basel week, has now announced that it will become the first to bring aisle-based art commerce to Brooklyn's natives.[content:shareblock]
Called Art Brooklyn, the event will be debuted by the team behind Verge on March 3-6, concurrent with the Armory Show's run back on the old-hat island of Manhattan, the New York Times reports. The new fair will take place at locations throughout the DUMBO neighborhood — including a section featuring artist-project booths located at 111 Front Street — and will target the borough's thrift-store-garbed denizens by offering inexpensive artworks and affordable exhibition spaces. (A 200-foot exhibition area costs $1,950, while artists will pay only $500 for a 100-square-foot project booth.) Art Brooklyn will also feature a juried exhibition for artists from all boroughs — even Staten Island.[link:view-slideshow]
The Web site for the new fair declares it to be "without precedent," stating, "Art Brooklyn is the first fair of its kind to be held in Brooklyn, NY." But we would like to point out that Brooklyn has not exactly been a cultural wasteland — just look at any issue of New York magazine for proof that riveting art-or-food-related innovation takes place there every single week. And, in fact, it does already boast events like the BKLYN Designs fair and numerous art and photo festivals. However, this new project does sound intriguing. It even purports to "promote and support Brooklyn as a cultural bellwether of artistic endeavor that influences artistic practice the world over." (Perhaps they should partner with New York magazine.)[content:advertisement-center]
All we have left to say is that it's really too bad that Bridge — Verge's ill-fated predecessor that went down in flames only to rise from the ashes as Verge — is no more. "Brooklyn Bridge" would have been a really good name for this fair.