Salon Art + Design 2022
With the demand for physical interaction with design high, the New York fair is predicted to bounce back in full force.
Park Avenue Armory, New York
10th-14th November 2022
OVER THE PAST decade, Salon Art + Design has carved out a distinctive niche for itself among the many collectible design fairs that dot the globe. Taking place at the ornate Victorian-style Park Avenue Armory, the event stands apart by attracting a distinctively sophisticated, knowledgeable yet dynamic collector base – many of whom call the adjoining avenues and streets home.
With a select group of 51 exhibitors, Salon Art + Design seamlessly combines displays of vintage, modern and contemporary wares. Exceptional examples of 20th-century art also make an appearance. This year’s fair, the 11th edition, will see the return of international galleries that have been absent for over two years. Characterised by an abundance of glass and a more neutral colour palette, this year’s Salon Art + Design is set to return to its pre-pandemic scale and grandeur.
The staple event has evolved a great deal according to Executive Director Jill Bokor. “When we began, the fair was mostly French and American galleries,” she explains, “but over the years we have become far more global – welcoming exhibitors from 13 countries.” Perhaps most important for her is that Salon Art + Design has gone from operating as a hybrid art-and-design fair to one dedicated almost entirely to the latter, with only hints of the former.
This shift reflects the niche industry’s growth in the last decade, especially regarding contemporary output, as well as the sector’s enhanced standing among buyers who might have previously acquired only fine art. “The market for crossover collecting has never been stronger,” Bokor emphasises. “You used to see a great collection of art surrounded by indifferent furniture – the art was everything. These days, top collectors are also considering furniture, ceramics, lighting and glass. They’re flocking to Salon Art + Design to find it.”
Although particular designers have begun to fetch significant prices for their work, the sums involved still lag way behind those fetched by big-name artists. Encouragingly, however, the market is accessible and brings in a younger clientele. “They’re beginning to understand that good design enhances life and that they can put their toes in the waters of collecting,” Bokor explains.
During the pandemic, online sales reigned supreme, but that was truer of fine art than collectible design. Viewing furnishings, luminaires or vessels in person – to comprehend a piece’s materiality, scale and actual colour – is a much better way to make an informed purchase. With the demand for physical interaction so high, Salon Art + Design is predicted to bounce back in full force.
“So much of it is palpable – you want to sit in a chair or hold a ceramic piece before you buy it,” says Bokor. “People were staying home and paying attention to their surroundings and found that they wanted to make changes in their homes. Now, even though we are on the other side of the pandemic, people are still at home, leading to stronger sales for specialised galleries.”
This year will see attendance from galleries across the world, including Belgium, China, Egypt, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden and the United Kingdom. Joining New York stalwarts Cristina Grajales Gallery, Magen H Gallery, and Maison Gerard, for instance, will be newcomers GARDE from Los Angeles, Armel Soyer from Paris, and Le LAB Atelier based in Giza, Eygpt.
Maverick real estate creative consultancy frenchCALIFORNIA is set to outfit a collectors’ lounge, complete with pieces from Charles Burnand and Bernd Goeckler. While renowned French interior designer Charles Zana debuts his first-ever furniture collection, Amy Lau is putting together a Brutalist-themed showcase. India’s klove Studio will display its intricately crafted totemic chandeliers. A section of the show dedicated to art jewellery will occupy the venue’s lavish front rooms with rare pieces by specialists including Didier Ltd, Lauren Adriana and Yvel.
“Glass has become a hot commodity,” says Bokor. Along with expert platforms Glass Past and Heller Gallery, other exhibitors will also showcase the medium. Todd Merrill will spotlight Jamie Harris’s highly sought-after sculptures, as R + Company features new works by Jeff Zimmerman. Galerie Negropontes is set to display Perrin & Perrin’s almost neolithic ‘NÉVÉ I’ series.
“I’ve also noticed a trend toward neutrals: whites, creams, and beiges,” Bokor notes. “This suggests that people want calm in their lives after these last chaotic two-and-half years.” Phoenix Ancient Art will exhibit the Roman marble torso of ‘Priapus Embracing a Maenad’ from the 1st–2nd centuries AD, while ‘Sovereign’ – the white bronze vase by Fredrikson Stallard – will be on display with David Gill Gallery.
If that isn’t to your taste, Friedman Benda will bring maximalist works by one of its most successful talents, Misha Kahn. Suffice to say, there’ll be plenty to explore. It’ll also be a chance to reconnect with the international community.