From ancient Egyptian artifacts to groundbreaking contemporary design, the Salon Art + Design fair brings its tantalizing, eclectic mix of top-tier fine art and furniture back to Manhattan’s Park Avenue Armory from November 9–13. With a deliberately diverse offering, “it feels intimate, not intimidating,” says Marc Benda, cofounder of New York-based Friedman Benda, one of more than 50 participating galleries from 11 countries. “You can just go and have a good time.”
Friedman Benda’s presentation will include furniture with a primitive minimalist appeal by London talent Paul Cocksedge. After being evicted from his studio to make way for new development he took monstrous core samples from its floor and married them with glass to create pieces like the Core Shelf and Exploded Core Table. “He drilled through the historical layers of construction, down to the Victorian era,” says Benda.
London-based David Gill Gallery will bring two new chairs: Elle & Lui, a years-in-the-making armchair by Mattia Bonetti with a whimsical bronze frame that combines branches and human figures, and For Eve, a bronze chair by Michele Oka Doner that’s so organically shaped it looks as though it was formed with the detritus of some ancient garden.
Galerie Negropontes, a newcomer from Paris, will show the latest creations of its art director, Hervé Langlais, including the Constellation coffee table: a circle of statuary marble punctured by a random arrangement of polished brass pillars, crafted with the painstaking precision of an early-20th-century atelier. “We really work in the Arts Décoratifs style, even if it’s very contemporary,” says gallery founder Sophie Negropontes. With Constellation, she notes, the top of each brass pillar is removable. “They’re covers for hidden vases,” she says, “into which you can put a rose, a bouquet, or even a bottle of champagne.”