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The scene at the 2018 Seattle Art Fair

A 5x5 gradiant by Peter Gronquist catches the eye of attendees at opening day of the Seattle Art Fair at CenturyLink Field Event Center in Seattle on Aug. 2, 2018. (Photo by Jovelle Tamayo for Crosscut)

 

Seattle art gallery owner Greg Kucera was in a decidedly good mood Thursday afternoon. The Seattle Art Fair had just gotten underway but he had already sold almost all of Anthony White's exquisitely textured and vibrant paintings.

Anthony White
Welcome to My Last Supper by Anthony White 2018

"I've sold 3 [out of 4] in the last 24 hours," Kucera said standing in his booth inside the CenturyLink Field Event Center. White, a recent Cornish grad already on the rise, creates vivid tableaux of millennial life. Made with tiny threads of a bioplastic called polylactic acid, his paintings look something like large-scale embroidery, and were attracting plenty of attention from cellphone camera-snapping art fair attendees. An installation featuring 30 facial images of Chelsea Manning — strung from the ceiling, a fascinating but unnerving artistic mobile — also generated loads of selfie photo opportunities.

Elsewhere in the event space, crowds gathered at the Orbital Reflector (a silver waterfall recalling Jiffy Pop tinfoil — a facsimile of the real deal that will be shot into space); gawked at 14-foot tall puppets of Seattle pioneers Mary Ann and Louisa Boren; and listened to a conversation between Charlene Vickers and Maria Hupfield using a handsewn cardboard megaphone. Their Jingles and Sounds for Speaking for our Grandmothers paid tribute to Anishinaabe culture.

"Seattle has been so supportive," said Max Fishko, Seattle Art Fair director. At the request of collectors, the Fair opened hours earlier than in years past, generating sales as well as buzz. The Fair also has an expanded footprint inside the Center; 106 galleries and a slate of talks are part of this year's Fair, in its 4th year.

The Fair continues through Sunday at the Event Center. 

Here's a look at some of the scenes from Day One at the Fair.

Seattle Art Fair
Probably Chelsea, a collaboration between Heather Dewey Hagborg and Chelsea Manning, at the Seattle Art Fair. The installation features 30, 3D-printed potential portraits of Chelsea Manning that were generated by an analysis of her DNA, according to the Seattle Art Fair. (Jovelle Tamayo for Crosscut)
Mike Kelley
Mike Kelley’s Gospel Rocket at Gagosian Gallery’s exhibition, Out of This World: Artists Explore Space. (Jovelle Tamayo for Crosscut)
Seattle Art Fair attendee views Spanish painter Lorenzo Fernandez
A Seattle Art Fair attendee views Spanish painter Lorenzo Fernandez’s work. (Jovelle Tamayo for Crosscut)
Seattle Art Fair
A model of Trevor Paglen’s Orbital Reflector. Paglen plans to send full-sized sculpture — made from reflective, mylar material — into low Earth orbit to serve as a mirror for humanity, and to transform “‘space’ into ‘place,’” according to the Seattle Art Fair website. (Jovelle Tamayo for Crosscut)
Seattle Art Fair

Japanese artist Naoki Takeyama’s Shirushi (Vision). (Jovelle Tamayo for Crosscut)
Seattle Art Fair
A Seattle Art Fair attendee views work at Chosun Hwalang’s gallery booth. (Jovelle Tamayo for Crosscut)
Seattle Art Fair
Work by Will Murray, presented by the Back Gallery Project, left, and work by Jiha Moon, presented by Mindy Solomon Gallery, on the right. (Jovelle Tamayo for Crosscut)
Seattle Art Fair
Drink bubbly and take cellphone photos: opening day behavior at the Seattle Art Fair. (Jovelle Tamayo for Crosscut)
Seattle Art Fair
Claudia Vernia, co-founder of Seattle's G. Gibson Gallery discusses Julie Blackmon’s Trapped 2017 with a Seattle Art Fair attendee. (Jovelle Tamayo for Crosscut)
seattle art fair
Bo Bartlett’s The Forge (Swords into Plowshares). (Jovelle Tamayo for Crosscut)
Seattle Art Fair
David French, an artist with Patricia Rovzar Gallery in Seattle, speaks with friends in the VIP area. (Jovelle Tamayo for Crosscut)
Seattle Art Fair
Opening day drew a crowd of visitors. The tall multicolored sculpture on the left is Jingles and Sounds for Speaking to our Grandmothers by Charlene Vickers and Maria Hupfield. (Jovelle Tamayo for Crosscut)

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The scene at the 2018 Seattle Art Fair