Frieze Week 2017
Thursday, May 4th, 2017

The One-Room Art Fair: Portal in SoHo

Opening reception: Wednesday, May 3, 6-9pm; Thursday, May 4 to Monday, May 8: 11am-6pm. 435 Broome Street, between Broadway and Crosby. Free admission.

Grant Stoops, Soul of a Clowny Guy, 2015, Oil on Board, 48 x 48 in. Photo courtesy of the artist.
Grant Stoops, Soul of a Clowny Guy, 2015, Oil on Board, 48 x 48 in. Image courtesy of the artist.

Perhaps due to an eleventh-hour change of venue from Federal Hall to a small ground-floor room in SoHo, the second iteration of Portal Art Fair looks a bit rushed and disjointed: none of the works on view are labeled with titles, materials, or prices. Even so, 4heads, the non-profit group organizing the fair (the same group behind the annual Governor’s Island Art Fair) has packed a diverse selection of work into a less-than-optimal space, featuring artists  either previous fair participants or selected from an open call  working in painting, small-scale installation, and sculpture (sorry, media art fans, there are no video pieces to be seen here). Some works of note include a grouping of photographs by Martina Kändler depicting rooms and hallways shot in the style of a broken CCTV camera. She built small-scale environments out of paper and lit them in a variety of ways to produce the series of six works shown here. Across the room is a duo of large (for the space, at least) paintings by Grant Stoops, titled Clowny Guy and Soul of a Clowny Guy. Meticulously rendered in oil paint on board, a golem-like figure variously made of clay or jelly confronts the viewer against a stark white backdrop in one panel and from a shadowy abyss in the other. See THE LIST for information about this and the other fairs happening around the city this week.

Martina Kändler, "grey space 1-6," pigment prints on sintra, each 13.5 x 20 in, edition of 5. Image courtesy of the artist and 4heads.
Martina Kändler, grey space 1-6, Pigment Prints on Sintra, each 13.5 x 20 in, Edition of 5. Image courtesy of the artist and 4heads.