Inside Guide: The Armory Show with Paddle8’s Simone Shields

The Armory Show in NYC, March 8th – March 11th

It’s that time of year again, when all of the art world from gallerists, mega-collectors, celebrities and art lovers alike descend on New York City’s Piers 92 and 94 for The Armory Show.

Art fairs are a great way to see what’s new and exciting on the art market, but they can be a bit overwhelming. No fear, we asked Paddle8 Contemporary Art Specialist, Simone Shields for an insider’s guide to what’s new, what can’t be missed, and what she’s most excited about this year.

Simone Shields



I’m excited to see what The Armory Show’s new female director, Nicole Berry, will bring to the fair’s massive showing over Piers 92 and 94. An enlarged Focus section dedicated to mid-size galleries and an innovative Platform section dedicated to site-specific works will add new perspective to the fair.




You can’t miss JR’s installation SO CLOSE at the entrance of Pier 94, combining archival images of Ellis Island immigrants with updated portraits of Syrian refugees captured at a camp in 2017. Bringing political crisis to the center of New York’s art world, this supersized work sets the stage for an exciting show.


Also in the Platform section, artist Mary Sibande is presenting a life-size sculpture of her personal muse and avatar, Sophie – an alter-ego used throughout her practice to explore gender roles and power in post-apartheid South Africa. Sibande’s works always show a high level of craft informed by her background in fashion design.

The Armory Show



Swing through Times Square for the eccentric, curatorially-driven Spring/Break Art Show – this year taking place in the former corporate offices of Condé Nast. Then head downtown to see the Independent and NADA fairs for thoughtful, curated presentations of contemporary art from new players.


As art fever descends on Manhattan, New York galleries take advantage by opening some of the year’s best shows. My must-see list includes: Dan Flavin (David Zwirner, 20th), Cy Twombly (Gagosian), Avery Singer (Gavin Brown’s Enterprise), Joe Overstreet (Eric Firestone), and Jean Michel Othoniel (Perrotin).




Armory week is most fun when you’re part of the action – don’t forget to bid from your phone in Paddle8‘s Contemporary Art Auction, featuring bright works from Joe Bradley, Richard Prince, Jenny Holzer, and Eddie Martinez.


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