The Artist’s Institute Sells Unique Works by Lucy McKenzie at Frieze Art Fair in NYC to Benefit Students
Joachim Pissarro, Bershad Professor of Art History and director of the Hunter College Art Galleries and Jenny Jaskey, The Artist’s Institute’s curator, at the Frieze Art Fair with Luck McKenzie’s work, Alhambra Stencil Samples.
Several major NYC art museums and private collectors from New York and Chicago have either committed to purchase or have reserved unique works from Scottish artist Lucy McKenzie, offered by The Artist's Institute at Hunter College in a free exhibit space at this past weekend's Frieze Art Fair on Randall's Island.
The story of how the sales came to be is as unique as the art itself:
McKenzie created Alhambra Stencil Samples (2014), a boxed-set edition of eight works on paper made using stencils based on motifs from the Alhambra Palace in Granada, to thank the college for her six-month series of exhibitions at The Artist's Institute at Hunter College, as well as her time as the Kossak Artist in Residence with Hunter College's painting program in fall 2013. She intended they be donated to benefit The Artist's Institute at Hunter.
Independent of the gift from McKenzie, Frieze recently approached The Artist's Institute at Hunter College with the offer of the free booth space at the fair, an offer also made to Artist's Space and White Columns, two of New York's most historic art non-profits.
The intersection of McKenzie's art and the space at the fair was a match that could not be denied.
The Artist's Institute's curator Jenny Jaskey says it's the first time she has ever seen a public college at Frieze, one of the world's leading contemporary art fairs. It features more than 150 contemporary galleries and also includes specially commissioned artists' projects, a talks program, and an artist-led education schedule. It is scheduled to coincide with the influx of art collectors who come to New York for the annual art auctions at Christie's and Sotheby's.
Each of the ten sets is expected to fetch as much as $30,000, and if all sell, it will help to cover operating expenses at The Artist's Institute for several years, according to Jennifer J. Raab, President of Hunter College.
Jaskey says the Hunter College booth at the fair was intentionally Spartan - with just one of McKenzie's creations exhibited in a room by itself - a decision designed to mimic the intimacy of the space on Eldridge Street on the Lower East Side that The Artist's Institute calls home.