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February 8, 2005

NOVA is Go

Michael Workman and the folks at Bridge Magazine have unveiled plans for a new indie art fair to be held concurrently with this year's two mainline fairs over this spring's art fair weekend.

The NOVA Young Art Fair, April 28-May 1, will find its home in the West Loop amongst the semis and forklifts on Fulton Market.

Offered forth as a relatively more affordable alternative to the bigger fairs ($2,500 for a 120 sq ft booth versus $10,500 for 288 and $8,800 for 240 with Art Chicago and Chicago Contemporary & Classic respectively), NOVA is also looking to stake out an ideological stance of sorts as a part of its "not-for-profit mission":

The NOVA Young Art Fair staff and committee will screen applications with an eye to work that seeks alternatives to our entertainment-driven culture. Similar to the New-York based New Art Dealers Alliance, NOVA will be an example of what not-for-profit and for-profit organizations can accomplish as partners rather than competitors, and NOVA planners intend for the selected exhibitors to reflect this philosophy. Programming at the NOVA Young Art Fair will reflect this genre-bashing approach to art exhibition. A portion of the exhibition space has been demarcated for performance and will include week-long showcases of performance art, live music, film screenings and more. A reading area will also be available for weary patrons to sit, relax and sample copies of art magazines and titles from art publishers while sipping coffee.

The selection committee is to include Charlotte Bonham-Carter, Stacie Johnson, Jason Lazarus, Krista Peel, Max Presneill, Sabrina Raaf and Melissa Schubeck.

[Hat tip: Caryn]

"NOVA is Go"
Posted by Dan at 07:09 PM


Do you know what the prices were for the Stray Show?

An aside, I really wish Bridge Mag would put dates on their entries. At this point, you never even know what year they're talking about.

But this is good news.

Posted by: Cynthia on February 12, 2005 at 12:53 PM

I've been told that Stray Show booths last year were $750 a pop, $500 in 2003. I think we have to bear in mind, though, that the Stray existed under the Art Chicago umbrella. Could they have kept their booth fees this low if it had been a solo endeavor? (I honestly don't know.) The $2,500 price tag with NOVA is apparently more in line with that of last year's Art Chicago International Invitational booths (which, for what it's worth, featured a number of Stray alums).

Still, it seems perhaps a tad steep, especially considering the risk involved in this here time of art fair uncertainty: as opposed to NADA and -scope in Miami and New York, NOVA does not come with a guaranteed benefit of cherry-picking its crowds from a big blockbuster across town.

At any rate, here's what Bridge says (emphasis added):

Exhibitor fees will be affordable enough to provide young gallerists and artists an opportunity to show their work, as our not-for-profit mission, during this seasonís art fairs without paying the tens of thousands of dollars required for space at either Chicago Contemporary & Classic or Art Chicago 2005. But this will also be a selling show, and rental fees will be set high enough to prompt prospective exhibitors to consider the strength of their inventory.

> I really wish Bridge Mag would put dates on their entries.

At least the bottom of the page alerts us to its 2003 copyright.

My question: did they send out a press release on this? I haven't seen a thing in either the Trib or Sun-Times.

Posted by: Dan on February 12, 2005 at 02:29 PM

It's been suggested through the Other Group that some of these $2.5K booths will be subdivided to be rented out to individual artists (memo to Martin...).

Divided into $500 segments, as Erik suggests, this would group five artists per booth at 24 square feet of floor space or just over 6 linear feet of wall space (by 10' high) per person. Booths that mix sculpture with wall displays could yield more space: say, 40 sq ft each for a pair of sculptors with 10 to 11 ft of wall each for a trio of glue-and-glitter scribblers. Still... not huge.

Of course, the Stray Show booths gallerists shelled out $750 for last year had to have been twice as big as NOVA's $2,500 10x12's.

Posted by: Dan on February 16, 2005 at 02:00 PM

Referenced in this post:

Art Chicago
Bridge Magazine
Bridge Magazine: Bridge Magazine announce Chicagoís first ever NOVA Young Art Fair, April 28-May 1
Bridge Magazine: Staff Bios
Chicago Contemporary & Classic
Iconoduel: Who Wants In?
Jason Lazarus
Krista Peel
MapQuest.Com: 857 W Fulton Market Chicago, IL 60607-1318, US
Max Presneill
NOVA Young Art Fair
Sabrina Raaf
Stacie Johnson