Sneak Peek: The Bridgehampton Antiques and Design Fair
What usually happens when a promoter drops or loses a show is that the show does not take place. Not so with this weekend’s antiques and design fair being held at the Bridgehampton Community House on Montauk Highway. In an instance of the inmates running the asylum, several of the dealers stepped up and organized the event themselves. Dallas Boesendahl and Sandy Berman quickly signed up a roster of dealers including Scott Estepp, R.E. Steele, T.J. Antorini, and yours truly, operating once again under my own banner as Weinberg Modern.
Dallas Boesendahl, a New York dealer, with help from Sarah Latham-Kearns, performed the yeoman work of publicizing the event, taking ads out in the local papers, working the phone lines and internet, as well as enlisting help from friends and supporters such as Beth Rudin DeWoody, Tori Golub, and Suzanne Slesin. According to Dallas and Sarah, the response has been positive, and the process has produced little in the way of “aggro.”
The show itself, which includes antiques to modern design, began set-up on Wednesday. I had not done a show by myself in a while, and had no idea how the van full of things I brought would fit into the booth. I was surprised to find that I was not alone in this predicament.Scott Estepp, a veteran of these campaigns, known for his catholic tastes and artful installations, confided that he, too, had no preconceived plan. Scott’s aesthetic might be described as Victorian modern, a mix of found objects, taxidermy, road signs, and Eames chairs, presented in clever vignettes, and pulled together with a sculptural and spare sensibility. Having seen his work before, I would have thought he had everything laid out in the truck, but through the day I watched his booth evolve through different permutations.
Elsewhere at the show, dealers set up with varying degrees of difficulty. Russell Steele, who has done the Modernism shows in New York, was finished quickly with a clean and attractive display that included French and Italian mid-century design. Art dealer Jayne Baum was finishing installing works that included a series of Polaroid light bulbs. At the other end of the spectrum was Dallas Boesendahl, who was slowly getting around to unpacking and setting up his displays of quirky and idiosyncratic objects and images. Given his double duties, this is only to be expected.
The absence of a promoter may yet prove to be problematic. Thus far, though, it has been smooth sailing. The Bridgehampton Antiques and Arts Fair is open this weekend, August 28-30. Hours are Friday, 10-8 p.m., Saturday, 10-6 p.m., and Sunday, 10-5 p.m. Admission is $5.
From top: Community House, Bridgehampton, New York; shoe lamps from Dallas Boesendahl; mannequin forms from Scott Estepp; R.E. Steele Antiques; Light bulb photos from Jayne H. Baum Gallery; Weinberg Modern; GoreDean; Antiques and Modern Design.