Affordable Art Fair NYC Opens Today

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Svetlana Rabey Untitled #51, 2015 Watercolor on paper 22 in x 30 in $1,500 Courtesy of Sugarlift (Brooklyn, NY)

Where you’ll love the art and the price tags

By Sarah Emily Gilbert

Buying art can be among the most intimating shopping experiences. This is especially true for young people who are looking to start-up their own art collection, but aren’t looking to go broke in the process. Luckily, Affordable Art Fair NYC (AAFNYC) is once again making extraordinary pieces of contemporary art accessible to all in their 21st edition of the Fair. Today until April 3, 2016 the Metropolitan Pavilion, located at 125 West 18th Street between 6th and 7th Avenues, will house one of NYC’s biggest, and most convivial, art events.

As Fair Director (and Stuart Country Day School graduate) Cristina Salmastrelli explains, AAFNYC is always looking to democratize art in different ways, and this year’s event is no exception. In addition to selling artwork from more than 500 artists and 70 local, national, and international galleries, the Fair is offering programs, workshops, and tours that help redefine the art buying process.

Among the Spring Fair highlights is the Personal Shopping Experience with Salmastrelli that allows fair-goers to get professional art-buying advice during a one-on-one session with the art expert. The Fair will also feature various informal talks, termed “Sofa Sessions,” that allow collectors to learn more about art in an unintimidating, conversational setting. “How to Invest in Art” (3/31 from 1:30-2:30 p.m.) and “How to Hang Art: Innovative Ways to Add Style & Texture to Your Space” (4/2 2-3 p.m.), are just two of the five Sofa Sessions offered this year.

Just to make sure everyone is 100% at ease during the Spring Fair, AAFNYC is throwing a party. Tonight, March 31, from 6-9 p.m., the AAF After Dark event will allow young collectors to browse contemporary art while sipping on complimentary cocktails. The $30 AAF After Dark tickets are available online or at the door and are valid tonight and during all public hours (listed below).

Thursday, March 31; 11am-6pm

Friday, April 1; 11am-8pm

Saturday, April 2; 11am-8pm

Sunday, April 3; 11am-5pm

So to my fellow young art collectors, I say today is the day to visit AAFNYC and swap out that Audrey Hepburn poster for a bona-fide piece of contemporary art purchased at a gallery.

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Sarah Voyer Protea, 2015 Watercolor on paper 22 in x 30 in $1,850 Courtesy of Eloquen Art Company (New York, NY)

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Carol Roche Jacaranda Blue, 2015 Mixed media 49 in x 37 in $4,500 Courtesy of Inart Gallery (Brisbane, Australia)

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Maija Fiebig Heat Wave, 2013 Acrylic on panel 18 in x 24 in $2,500 Courtesy of Michele Mariaud gallery (New York, NY)

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Kal Mansur Gray Valkyrie 20, 2016 Acrylic glass construction 32 in x 32 in x 3 in $3,800 Courtesy of Reference Contemporary (Toronto, Canada)

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Janet Parker Smith Aberrant One, 2015 Collage 12 in x 14 in $1,100 Courtesy of Van Rensburg Galleries (Hong Kong, Hong Kong)

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Zara Merrick Wise Owl, 2016 Hand embroidery 34 in x 34 in $3,500 Courtesy of Will’s Art Warehouse (London, UK)