It might be parody, spoof, farce. Or it might be sincere, some force of truth in the arts.
Or it might be all of that, and likely then some. Given the space and list of galleries involved, it will rather certainly be at least quite handsome.
It’s called Bushwick Basel, and it will be up and running during Bushwick Open Studios, the annual omni-arts event that cloaks in so many creative colors the Brooklyn neighborhood of so many names.
With the partial intent of flipping the ‘Basel’ franchise on its head (i.e. by hosting micro-exhibits by small, or smallish, local galleries rather than booths emblazoned with big brand names often dealing in blue, and by paying less attention to the pecuniary payoff of any of it), the event’s creator, artist Jules de Balincourt, has described the eventual spread of the fair as a “salad bar of galleries.”
A salad bar that will be set up in the artist’s very own studio, Starr Space.
As Rosalia Jovanovic has reported in GalleristNY:
Unlike big fairs like Art Basel and Frieze, Bushwick Basel had no selection committee; Mr. de Balincourt simply made a list of local galleries that interested him, or that he had been referred to, and emailed them. There is just one booth size (10 by 12 feet), which costs the galleries $100 to occupy. Instead of the sheetrock walls familiar from most fairs, Starr Space will be divided up by curtains. And whereas the major fairs have signage indicating what city each gallery is located in, Bushwick Basel will feature street names. “Instead of saying ‘Gagosian, Rome,’” Mr. de Balincourt said, “it will say ‘Regina Rex, Troutman Street.’” He has instructed the galleries to present either one- or two-artist shows, or a curated exhibition. “I don’t want it to be a hodgepodge.”
Along with Regina Rex, other galleries in the Jekalb’s Morgue (or whatever) environs that have signed on for Bushwick Basel include Norte Maar, Storefront Bushwick, English Kills, Parallel Art Space, Valentine and Airplane.
Sounds promising. Sounds fun. Go see for yourself if it’s genuine or pun.
I reckon it will be well worth your while.
I haven’t heard yet if it’s Bring Your Own Vinaigrette.
You can follow Paul D’Agostino on Twitter @postuccio