“The Grind Lady” by Alexander Calder, 1967. Courtesy of Art Southampton.
By Mara Certic
More and more people are doing it. Some people do it to show off. Some people do it for money. But, according to Nick Korniloff, most people do it because they’re in love.
“Everybody has different reasons for collecting art,” Mr. Korniloff said. “The number- one reason why I see people investing in art on a regular basis is that they’re extremely passionate about it.”
Collecting art has been a way for people to express themselves, decorate their homes and invest their money for years. And according to Mr. Korniloff, one of the directors of Art Miami, which presents Art Southampton, the art market right now is booming.
Art collectors of the East End will arrive in droves to Art Southampton this weekend as one of the largest art fairs on the East End returns for its third annual show.
Art Southampton will take place in the 100,000-square-foot pavilion behind the Southampton Elks Lodge on Route 27 from Thursday, July 24, through Monday, July 28.
“We’re continuing to get more galleries from around the globe to participate,” Mr. Korniloff said during a phone interview on Monday. The fair will feature art from over 80 different galleries all over the world, from London to Seoul to Bridgehampton.
Mr. Korniloff said that for years, friends with homes on the East End had been asking him to organize a “high caliber” art fair here during the summer months. By 2012, he and his partners found the location for the fair and were able to partner with local organizations such as the Parrish Art Museum and the Ross School and so Art Southampton began.
“We also knew there was an international audience here,” he said. “And it’s much larger than I had anticipated, which has been very, very good for the show.”
What really sets the show apart, Mr. Korniloff said, is the extremely high quality of the artwork and the diversity of the show. The show features “carefully selected” modern and contemporary paintings, prints, drawings, sculptures, and outdoor design projects. Mr. Korniloff said that there are some cutting-edge post-war, pop era artworks for sale but that he “doesn’t play favorites.”
“The quality continues to rise,” Mr. Korniloff said of the art fair. “This is the one fair you can rely on for great quality art, a great atmosphere, amenities for the collectors when they come and an easy transition in and out of the facility for all who attend.”
One such amenity that Art Southampton is providing for the first time this year, in conjunction with One Art Nation, is the “Art Symposium.” Leading experts will give talks on a range of subjects such as building a collection, investing in art and art appraisal.
“A very important aspect of what we do, is while we do know how to service the seasoned collectors, one of the great things our dealers know how to do is educate new collectors into the market,” he said.
“We feel that there’s a huge interest from some new collectors coming into the market and that’s the future for everyone is to continue to educate people that want to start to collect.” A young contemporaries art afternoon will also take place over the weekend and is geared toward newer collectors.
Alongside paintings by Matisse, Warhol, Lichtenstein and Chagall, artwork by students at the Ross School will be on sale throughout the weekend. The proceeds of which will go to benefit the school.
John Alexander curated an exhibition of paintings, drawings and sculptures by the artists currently in residence at the New York Academy of Art. A portion of those sales will go to scholarships for members of the school.
A Platinum VIP preview will take place on Thursday, July 24, from 6 until 7:30 p.m. when the doors will open for the regular VIPs. Champagne and hors d’oeuvres catered by the Southampton Social Club will be passed during the evening preview. The opening night will benefit the Parrish Art Museum and Southampton Hospital.
“We’ve really continued to grow our cultural, social and philanthropic relationships here on the East End,” said Mr. Korniloff.
Mr. Korniloff and his partners were not just setting out to create any old art fair when they began Art Southampton three years ago. Their aim, he said, was and continues to be “to create an event that’s really reflective of the community that lives here.”
“It’s important to have the right partners but also the right ambiance and services and treat people in a first-class way,” he said.
A preview for Art Southampton will take place on Thursday, July 24. The fair will be open from noon to 8 p.m. on Friday; noon to 7 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday; noon to 5 p.m. on Monday. Tickets range in price from $15 to $40. For more information visit art-southampton.com