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There was bedlam on the roads leading to Carriageworks in September 2013 as Australasia’s new international art fair, Sydney Contemporary, launched with not so much a bang, but an explosion! That night the cars were bumper to bumper, slowly snaking towards the VIP party that was the hottest ticket in town.
The crowds poured in, the queues were endless, the drinks ran out and the wall-to-wall art lovers, poseurs, wannabes and serious collectors all had to vie for space.
In short, it was brilliant!
At some stage during the evening I caught the urbane CEO and Director of Sydney Contemporary, Barry Keldoulis, propped up against a wall in Anna Schwartz’ gallery looking somewhat bemused and just a little exhausted. Yes, he said, they had given out a lot of VIP tickets to ensure a good roll-up, but this surpassed anything he had anticipated.
Of course this is the art world so there was the predictable amount of criticism and bad-mouthing but let’s face it – whoever would have thought a contemporary art event in Australia would cause such mayhem and excitement. A traffic jam for an art event – I just loved it. And did all the exhibiting galleries do well out of the fair? Probably not but more than enough did to definitively justify its existence.
So hold on to your easel, it’s all about to happen again from September 10 – 13, minus the traffic jam I’m reliably informed. This year’s Sydney Contemporary program presents over 90 galleries from 13 countries offering visitors access to cutting-edge art from some of the world’s most respected artists as well as the opportunity to discover the next generation of emerging talent.
On Wednesday, September 9 Angeline and I are hosting an intimate group to a very special VIP Preview day with a delicious lunch at the art-filled Centennial, a visit to the home of an art collector/dealer and then out to the private VIP preview at Carriageworks and if you’re still standing, late cocktails to finish the day. If you would like to join us contact me: firstname.lastname@example.org
Carriageworks is a fabulous venue for the fair; a raw industrial space with soaring ceilings that is the largest multi-arts centre of its kind in Australia. Run by the highly talented and dedicated Director, Lisa Havilah, it’s one of my favourite places in Sydney.
Do come and join us, you won’t be disappointed.