By John Dorfman
The Palm Springs Fine Art fair makes its debut.
Palm Springs, Calif., long known as a resort for affluent Angelenos and Hollywood honchos, is becoming an “art oasis in the desert,” in the words of Hamptons Expo Group, organizers of the Palm Springs Fine Art Fair, which launches February 17–19 (with an opening party on the 16th to benefit the Palm Springs Art Museum). The boutique event will feature 50 dealers of mainly postwar and contemporary art from around the country who are bringing some 2,000 artworks valued at about $100 million. The fair is timed in conjunction with Modernism Show and Sale, and both events take place in the Palm Springs Convention Center. Hamptons Expo Group also produces ArtHamptons, ArtAspen, the Houston Fine Art Fair and the SF Fine Art Fair.
Among the dealers participating in the Palm Springs fair are Paul Thiebaud Gallery of San Francisco; David Richard Contemporary of Santa Fe, N.M.; Hexton Modern and Contemporary of Northbrook, Ill., Etherton Gallery of Tucson, Ariz., Universal Limited Art Editions (ULAE) of Bay Shore, N.Y.; Jenkins Johnson Gallery of San Francisco and New York; Imago Galleries of Palm Desert, Calif.; Lisa Sette Gallery of Scottsdale, Ariz.; and Gerald Peters Gallery and Throckmorton Fine Art, both of New York.
“I am absolutely thrilled that our gallery is participating in the inaugural Palm Springs Fine Art Fair,” says Kraige Block, director of Throckmorton. “When I came to Palm Springs five years ago to look for a home, I knew that this wonderful place was about to pop. The area has long enjoyed a reputation as a hidden jewel of postwar art and culture, and the new fair unveils the ideal winter getaway for art lovers from around the world.” The Palm Springs region (which also encompasses Palm Desert, Rancho Mirage and Coachella) is home to some 60 galleries, as well as the Palm Springs Art Museum. The annual Coachella Festival, which combines sculptural and installation art with music.
The fair will have a special exhibition component: L.A.-based curator Peter Frank is mounting “The Big Picture: Paintings from Southern California 1960–1980,” a show of around 60 works that has been named an official Point of Interest in Pacific Standard Time, the months-long Southern California art extravaganza organized by the Getty Museum.