Let us direct your attention to Exhibition A—the Exhibition A pop-up gallery at Barneys New York, that is.
Exhibition A is a very cool members-only website that offers exclusive editions of work by prominent contemporary artists—at prices that let you try out new artists without an anxiety-inducing commitment. Founded by Bill Powers, Cynthia Rowley (yes, that Cynthia Rowley) and Laura Martin, the gallery collaborates with some of the biggest names in art right now, including Richard Prince, Nate Lowman, Terence Koh and David LaChapelle, just to name a few.
At Chelsea Passage in the Barneys New York flagship on Madison Avenue, you’ll find prints for sale by Spencer Sweeney, René Ricard, Max Snow and Lucien Smith, along with signed and rare books by Andreas Gursky, Andy Warhol and Cindy Sherman.
We’ll stop name-dropping now—but only if you promise to make your way to the exhibition as soon as humanly possible. It ends on April 16th, and prints are going fast. Just think about it: You can pick up a collector’s item on your way to coffee at Fred’s.
In the meantime, check out our pictures of the space below, along with an interview with two of the Exhibition A co-founders.
Barneys New York: What inspired you to start Exhibition A?
Laura Martin: We wanted to create a platform for contemporary art online that increases awareness, supports artists and fosters a new segment of collectors by offering relevant artwork by top artists at a price you can afford. I think that many people assume you need to be über-wealthy to collect art. Exhibition A proves that’s not true. We’re offering our customers a curated entry point to contemporary art. We deal with artists who are represented by some of the top galleries in the world and are in the collections of top museums, but are still offering work priced under $1,000. We’re asking people to rethink their art buying habits. After all, why just decorate when you can also collect?
Barneys New York: What do you love about prints?
Bill Powers: Your print collection can be your idealized private collection. It’s like fantasy football for art fans.
Laura Martin: I agree—it’s a great opportunity to own signed work by artists who are really making an impact in the contemporary art world today.
Barneys New York: Why should someone invest in a print?
Bill Powers: I was reading in John Richardson‘s memoir about a Picasso print he almost bought as a young man that’s now worth a million dollars.
Laura Martin: Bill’s touching upon a good point, which is that prints are a legitimate art form in the fine art world; Sotheby’s and Christie’s deal in prints and major museums like the MoMA and the Whitney have prints in their collections.
Barneys New York: How did you choose the selection of prints and books for Barneys?
Bill Powers: We wanted to unveil a few surprises like Sam Falls, Lucien Smith, Andre Saraiva and Wes Lang, but contextualize these preview sales with some of our favorite editions. The great thing about hanging salon style is that it’s a group show on a single wall and your eye dances all over the place.
Barneys New York: Favorite artist of all time?
Bill Powers: Richard Prince is a prophet and provacateuer.
Laura Martin: René Ricard. He’s a living legend whose hand-painted text works are the genesis of my interest in contemporary art.
Barneys New York: Are there similarities between what you like when it comes to art and what you like when it comes to fashion?
Laura Martin: Yes, definitely. My art collection and my wardrobe are both forms of self-expression. They are the visual commentary about my personality, dreams and aesthetic.
Photographs by Chris New.