October 11, 2017
Jill Bokor Brings Us a Sneak Peek Into this Year's The Salon Art + Design
The Salon Art + Design Fair will be returning to the Park Avenue Armory for their sixth installment from November 9-13th.
by New York Spaces
NYS: As the Executive Director of The Salon Art + Design, what does a day in your shoes look like a couple of weeks before the show? During?
Jill Bokor: The good news is that though always intense, no two days leading up to the fair are ever the same. A lot of the detail work happens in the last month from writing copy to working with sponsors. The best part is that each day we learn more about what our exhibitors are planning to bring to the fair so there's always something to be excited about. Most recently we learned that an elevator by Louis Kahn for the Chicago Stock Exchange will be featured in the booth of Lost City Arts!
NYS: With 32 international galleries showcasing both fine and decorative art, how do you make sure to take it all in?
Jill Bokor: (There are actually 56 galleries participating, 32 of them international). We look for the best mix and design the fair so the experience keeps the visitors on their toes. We curate the Salon to ensure that nothing is taken for granted in the way it can be at a classic antiques show or art fair where the aisles look more or less the same. Josef Hoffman furniture and Egon Schiele artworks at Yves Macaux and Richard Nagy live across the aisle from contemporary furniture mid-century lighting at Galerie Kreo. Around the corner, vintage and modern Scandinavian design at Hostler Burrows contrasts wonderfully with American Studio Craft furniture at Moderne. Across the way a booth of classical ancient art, some might say the earliest design, from Ariadne Galleries is juxtaposed by the mid-century French work shown at Demisch Danant. With all this and so much more, the visitor is always on the lookout for the unexpected.
NYS: Is there a gallery or certain pieces you are most excited to see?
Jill Bokor: I can't name one—too political and it would be hard to choose in any case!
But I can mention a few things I'm in love with the work of Faye Toogood, shown at Friedman Benda. Dominic Harris, shown by Priveekoelletie is an interactive artist and this year he's done a riff on 17th Century Dutch flower paintings that look amazing! 21st Gallery will show a flower infused resin and steel table by Marcel Rusak in which antique sensibility meets contemporary design. Finally, Joan Mirviss shows the work of contemporary Japanese ceramicist Sakiyama Takayuki. These swirling, incised vessels influenced by the rugged shores of the Izu Peninsula, feel like they contain eternity!
NYS: How many newcomers will be at this year's Salon and how do they get vetted?
Jill Bokor: We're excited to present 14 new galleries including newcomers from Spain and Denmark making this our most international fair to date. The process begins when we determine who will return from prior years then look to see how we can add the most interesting material. Each new gallery submits a proposal detailing what they plan to bring. In the early winter, I visit the new applicants to get a better sense of their aesthetic and how they might fit into the fair. It's always a hard decision—so many great galleries apply. But in the end we do look for material that we haven't seen before. Amongst our new participants are three contemporary galleries-- Galerie BSL, Paris; Etage Projects, Denmark; and Garrido, Spain. For great historic material we're excited to welcome Rossella Colombari from Milan and a home team gallery, Magen H, from New York.
NYS: Is there a certain time period or design style that you believe is highlighted in this year's show?
Jill Bokor: We are moving slightly more towards contemporary design. What's so great about that is we can see how the whole continuum of design has evolved. If you look at the Art Deco works at Vallois and the midcentury Scandinavian work at Modernity, you begin to understand how today's designers have mined the best of what came before and then taken the work to new places in both form and material.
NYS: What are some of the leading trends you have noticed?
Jill Bokor: We're seeing a lot of interesting metals being used. Visit Garrido Gallery, Gallery All, Negropontes and Cristina Grajales' booths to see how contemporary designers are using metal work to extraordinary effect. They're cool—architectural, not glitzy and can be paired effectively with vintage pieces.
NYS: What do you most love about The Salon?
Jill Bokor: I'm prejudiced, of course, but I think we have the most amazing roster of galleries who bring their absolutely best material to The Salon. And I love that every year we get to reinvent the fair ever so slightly. That means that the visitor can come without preconceived ideas about what s/he's going to see. There are some fairs that look quite the same from year to year. I like to think that The Salon has something new to offer with each edition from the elegant now classical forms of the 20th century to the whimsical design that's being made today—the classics of the future.
*Interested in more articles like this? Sign up for our Newsletter!