Architect David Ling will transform the Park Avenue Armory into a veritable work of art for an event that itself overflows with top-tier contemporary and modern arts and design in celebration of the 15th anniversary of the Sculpture Objects & Functional Art Fair: SOFA New York April 20-23.
"I conceived of it as a time machine-like procession," said Ling. "This procession leads visitors from the stately, Victorian-era foyer of the Armory through a long, narrow tunnel, tantalizing you with the prospect of an unknown but exciting journey."
"Floating high over the exhibitions will be a huge cube of light, out of which smaller blocks of light explode, traveling to all points within the hall like newly formed stars. I based the concept on the Big Bang Theory. It's about creation, re-creation and energy, the origin of the universe in the Big Bang. It served as an inspiration for a modernist constellation to light this year's SOFA NEW YORK. And with the fair's universe of offerings," adds Ling, "I think my concept is a fitting one."
Of the architect's attention-grabbing design, Donna Davies, the fair's director, says, "We are thrilled with Mr. Ling's bold scheme to integrate up-to-the-minute art within the Armory's historical 19th century architecture, especially since it so expressively spans the range of offerings displayed by the exhibitors-one that is better presented than ever."
Ling also designed an inventive new exhibition for the gallery stands. "Mr. Ling's innovative floor plan demonstrates how the fair is always evolving through fresh thought," says Douglas Heller of New York's Heller Gallery, a participant since its inception in 1993. "To remain relevant in the arts, dealers must constantly reinvent, and SOFA NEW YORK is always right in step with them through the presentation of the exhibitions." Heller Gallery is demonstrating its enthusiasm for this year's edition by expanding its exhibition space. Says Heller: "Our belief is that that this year's 15th anniversary milestone is just as much a celebration of an illustrious past as it is an assured expression of the show's future, and that future is epitomized by this year's design by Mr. Ling."