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All the fun of the fair

At the 2007 art fair

Veteran art dealer Peter McLeavey enjoys the 2007 Auckland Art Fair

For people like me—and based on last time around there are at least 12,000 of us—there will be only one place to be in the first weekend of May this year: the Auckland Art Fair. Many Idealog readers will have had this event circled in their diaries for months by now, but I would like to urge you to employ FGF technology and drag a buddy, a girlfriend or even a client to one of the big events on the New Zealand arts calendar.

The art fair concept has swept the globe in the last ten years. The biggest in our neck of the woods is the Melbourne Art Fair, which Kiwi gallerists, collectors and curators attend in droves. The Auckland Art Fair is equally well attended by Aussie galleries—ten this time—collectors and curators, and is going a long way to putting the New Zealand art scene on the international map.

The beauty of this art fair is that 40 of the best galleries from Oz and Enzed are putting their best and brightest on display; the work will be so fresh it will be quite literally wet on the walls. In one afternoon I’ll be able to get an in-depth and live update on what is happening right now in contemporary art.

Part of what makes an art fair such good entertainment is the chance to see who’s who in the zoo in the art world, how they operate and hear their sales pitches. If you have ever wanted to stare into the entrails of the subculture that is the art world then here’s your chance. My recommendation is pay a bit extra and buy yourself a ticket to the tony opening Vernissage event on Thursday the 30th of April. This is where the heavyweight collectors and patrons get a first peak at the fair, the champagne will be flowing and the art world pretends to be Absolutely Fabulous Darling for one magic evening—why not tag along?