This past weekend not only was a busy art fair weekend in Los Angeles but also on the East Coast. In NYC the 23rd edition of the Outsider Art Fair was happening at Center 548 in Chelsea. The Outsider Art Fair is a yearly platform for hundreds of international artists and galleries to come together and celebrate the unorthodox of the art world. The Outsider Art Fair highlights marginalized, unique, artists who are unprecedented in the contemporary art realm. These artists are self taught or otherwise represent a minority of creatives that would rarely be seen at a conventional fair.
As Art Fair Director Rebecca Hoffman stated to Huffington Post,
“I utilize the term 'outsider art' as an umbrella for a lot of different categories. Primarily, what we term outsider art is self-taught or non-academic work. So, that could be somebody who is a mathematician who has taught himself how to paint. That could be somebody who [has severe autism] and expresses himself through drawing. That could be a member of an aboriginal tribe in Western Australia, a herdsman for her entire life, who painted prolifically for her final 14 years of life. That could be someone who was drawing to escape violence in New Orleans. It could be someone who took to marble carving to express all of the diverse experiences he's undergone."
Over 50 galleries from a multitude of international cities come to represent fringe art makers. This fair and its artists are freed from the conventional restraints of profit making art therefore each piece has a unique narrative about a process and a person. If you missed this year’s fair in NYC do not fret the Outsider Art Fair will travel to Paris in October of this year.
See the website for European dates: Outsider Art Fair
Painting by Francisco da Silva