Art Southampton, now in its fifth edition, continues to redefine what a summer weekend getaway to the Hamptons should include. For many, the phrase “spending a weekend in the Hamptons” paints a vivid picture of beaches and tennis courts, streets lined with palatial seaside retreats and quaint boutiques, and raucous crowds at celebrity parties and local clam shacks—but there’s plenty of art to see, too. The fair opens to the public on Friday, July 8th, and will play host to over 60 galleries, curated exhibitions, and a series of expert-led panels and talks exploring various aspects of the art world. Many of the artists and works offered at this year’s fair also play with the idea of tradition, manipulating media, themes, and reworking familiar images from art history to examine the role that tradition plays in the creation of contemporary art. Here, we bring you the 10 must-see works at this year’s fair.
While many of his predecessors and contemporaries have focused on finding the perfect light, French photographer Mirial actively seeks out the absence of light to create his work, utilizing techniques such as underground photography and shooting amongst neon light at night. As a result, his photographs are swathed in shadows that invite the viewer to look closely at the image and to contemplate the forms and symbols the artist has made visible.
British artist Robb famously creates images that defy all definitions of what a traditional photograph ought to be—namely, a flat image representing a visual reality. His lenticular photographs confound reality, capturing floating and otherworldly figures in a space that extends beyond the constraints of the print.
British artist Secunda challenges the limitations of paint as a two-dimensional medium, devoting much of his practice to developing application processes that blur the lines between painting and sculpture. In his latest series, Secunda takes this metamorphosis one step further, appropriating and recontextualizing ancient Persian reliefs using floor paint and bullet holes to reflect the reality of their political fate in contrast with their illustrious origins.
Harkening back to the dynamic, fractured abstraction of early 20th-century Cubist compositions, the work of Turkish artist Önürmen examines how reality is obscured by social media. His cast of subtly pixelated characters, though quotidien, are taken from Instagram and other social media outlets on which perceived reality is no more than what the user projects to the world. This confusion is implied in his work through the gauzy, atmospheric application of paint and tulle.
At first glance, one might mistake van Zeijl’s portraits for long-lost subversive portrayals of noblewomen painted by Northern Renaissance and Dutch Golden Age masters. Through the exploration and manipulation of the visual vocabulary of the past and the implementation of modern photographic technology, her works possess a timeless beauty that transcends the boundaries of epoch and media.
Park, who exploded onto the New York art scene in 2014, traverses tradition and innovation in every work she creates. Her sculptural forms—sumptuous yet rigid and organic though undoubtedly manufactured—are woven using millennia-old techniques and thoroughly modern, industrial materials.
In his boldly colorful and sharply fragmented compositions, Chicago-based artist Nickel, more commonly known as POSE, seamlessly blends fine art with street art. His recent paintings maintain the vibrancy and angularity ubiquitous of his work, now reimagined to contemplate human emotion as seen in the dynamic layering of faces reminiscent of Lichtenstein’s Pop Art characters with flourishes of spray paint.
British photographer Miller does not take photos of the visible world. Rather, his “camera-less” photographs capture an image as yet unseen by the world, himself included, following a process developed from outmoded techniques that transfer images directly from the camera to the darkroom to produce work that exudes luminosity despite its conception in darkness.
Appropriating works from established artists of the art-historical canon such as John Singer Sargent and Edgar Degas, French painter Moreaux abstracts the images and their subjects, reimagining them in a melancholy, pixelated take on the modern world.
Native New Yorker and Academy Award-winning actor Brody is a modern-day Renaissance man. Name a facet of the entertainment industry—actor, artist, model—and he has probably tried it and excelled. Brody returns to his artistic practice, with its distinct focus on aquatic subjects, in a series of vibrant two-dimensional and sculptural fish painted in a Pollock-esque splatter style. The works will be available to the public for the first time at Art Southampton 2016.