The Association of International Photography Art Dealers, or AIPAD, as it’s more commonly known, has announced that its annual photography show will be moving to Pier 94 in 2017. The 2016 Photography Show will be the last edition held at the Park Avenue Armory, where the show has taken place since 2006.
The news comes as the Park Avenue Armory continues to take steps to rebrand itself as a performance venue. Recently, news broke that the five-day New York Art, Antique & Jewelry Show was told it will no longer be able to rent the venue.
“I just heard the Antiquarian Book Fair is no longer going to be there either,” Catherine Edelman, AIPAD president and director of the eponymous gallery, told me over the phone. “I don’t know if other organizations have been planning for a move, but we’ve been planning a potential move for years because we’ve outgrown the restrictions of the Park Avenue Armory and the booth sizes they can accommodate. Rather than having to rotate dealers like ADAA does, we jumped on the opportunity to secure a contract with Pier 94 when the Park Avenue Armory couldn’t offer us a space for 2017.” (A rep for the Antiquarian Book Fair confirmed that they plan to move by 2018.)
AIPAD, which was founded in 1979 and represents more than 120 photography galleries across the globe, first organized the Photography Show in 1980 as an opportunity for its members to display contemporary, modern, and 19th-century photos in addition to photo-based art, video, and new media.
“For us, it’s a win-win,” Edelman said. “It’s a little bit sooner than perhaps we had anticipated, but we’ve been bothering the Pier for years. It gives us the opportunity to mount special exhibitions, and to work with publishers and auction houses. It’s as they say, ‘When opportunity knocks’…what’s the saying… ‘When one door’…” She broke off. “Well, anyway, it’s like, some people could see this as a negative, but we’re like, ‘It’s the writing on the wall.’ It’s like a mother bird pushing the baby out of the nest. They do fly, you know—they don’t usually fall to the ground.”