The 7 Best Works (and What They Cost) at NADA House 2019, the Art Fair Taking Over Governors Island in New York This Summer

Make a point of checking on these works on your visit.

NADA House in Colonel's Row Houses on Governors Island. Photo: Caroline Goldstein.

For the second iteration of the New Art Dealers Alliance’s “NADA House” exhibition in New York, presented in lieu of a traditional art fair, the organization has gathered 45 artists from member galleries to show work on Governors Island. The location, a quick seven-minute jag from the Manhattan waterfront on a $3 ferry, was once an outpost for the US military during the Revolutionary War, and was used by the US Coast Guard until 1996.

Since being decommissioned as a military site, it’s flourished as a home for art and culture, and its rich history is a poignant backdrop for many of the works on view.

NADA House takes place inside three Colonial Revival houses that line an area of the island called Colonel’s Row, with each gallery presenting an artist or group of artists in a site-specific installation. In total, there are 34 rooms chock full of work by 45 artists—and all of it’s for sale! Here are some highlights of the best works on show.

NADA House is open on Governors Island every weekend through August 4; Friday through Sunday 11 a.m.–5 p.m. in Houses 403, 404A, and 404B.

Ferries to Governors Island are at 10 South Street in Manhattan and Pier 6, Brooklyn Bridge Park. 


Meghan Brady

Back to Back (2019)

Meghan Brady, Back to Back (2019). Courtesy of the artist and Mrs. Gallery.

Meghan Brady, Back to Back (2019). Courtesy of the artist and Mrs. Gallery.

Presented by: Mrs. Gallery, New York

Price: $3,000

Maine-based artist Meghan Brady’s kaleidoscopic paintings can’t be justified in reproduction. Installed in old, dilapidated houses along Colonel’s Row, they radiate a sort of frenetic warmth. The bright, neon colors recede into the background, and the cooler shapes and lines come forward, revealing ever new patterns and layers.


Paul Gabrielli

Untitled (Caroline) (2018)

Paul Gabrielli, Untitled (Caroline) and Untiled (Robert) (both 2018). Courtesy of the artist and New Discretions Gallery.

Presented by: New Discretions, New York

Price: $8,500

The best part of NADA House is that, unlike in a white cube gallery, there is art in unexpected places, like Paul Gabrielli’s miniature sculptures displayed on shelves like little gems. While other artworks are louder (and bigger), Gabrielli’s works are delightfully unassuming, Stuart Little-sized objects.


Erick Medel

La Migra (2019)

Erick Medel, La Migra (2019). Courtesy of the artist and Housing Gallery.

Erick Medel, La Migra (2019). Courtesy of the artist and Housing Gallery.

Presented by: Housing Gallery, New York

Price: $3,200

Los Angeles-based artist Erick Medel’s work is intimately tied to the car culture of the city. With his hand-crafted, tapestry-like works, he incorporates hardware and found objects that gesture towards traditional masculinity, but Medel weaves his works together as quilts, a stereotypically feminine practice, creating a patchwork of identities and objects. Woven into the fabric are illustrations of skulls, cacti, and snippets of the American flag.


Sarah Zapata

Standing on The Edge of Time (2019)

Sarah Zapata, <i>Standing on the Edge of Time</i> (2019). Courtesy of the artist and Deli Gallery.

Sarah Zapata, Standing on the Edge of Time (2019). Courtesy of the artist and Deli Gallery.

Presented by: Deli Gallery, New York

Price: $12,000

Brooklyn-based artist Sarah Zapata’s sculpture Standing on the Edge of Time incorporates aspects of her identity as a Peruvian-American artist. She constructs her colorfully shaggy works using traditional methods of weaving and latch-hooking, used predominantly by indigenous Peruvian women, and combines them with traditional methods of American rug making. The result is an ecstatic, tie-dyed woolly mammoth of an object that just calls out to be petted.


Erik Frydenborg

NoDozers (2019)

Erik Frydenborg, NoDozers (2019). Courtesy of the artist and The Pit, LA.

Erik Frydenborg, NoDozers (2019). Courtesy of the artist and The Pit, LA.

Presented by: The Pit, Los Angeles

Price: $5,000

Like little sperms with perfectly arranged tails, these egg-shaped sculptures seem like they might wiggle away at any second. (They also seem like a sendup of Brancusi’s highly polished golden Newborn Eggs.) These ovoids are made of pumice stone, covered in doodles and scribbles, and are perched on handmade cradles that look like Plasticine dumplings.


Anya Kielar

New Face (2018)

Anya Kielar, New Face (2018). Courtesy of the artist and Rachel Uffner Gallery.

Anya Kielar, New Face (2018). Courtesy of the artist and Rachel Uffner Gallery.

Presented by: Rachel Uffner Gallery, New York

Price: $12,000

Anya Kielar’s elegant depictions of female faces are made from a collage of materials and are contained neatly within diaorama-like boxes. Her work often draws comparisons to stage designs and mannequins (but infused with a Surrealist attitude) and in these works, it looks like a disassembled marionette doll is resting in a drawer.


Sara Rahbar

Empty Handed (Confessions) (2017)

Installation view of Sara Rahbar's works presented by Carbon 12, Dubai.

Installation view of Sara Rahbar’s works presented by Carbon 12, Dubai. Courtesy of NADA House 2019.

Presented by: Carbon 12 Gallery, Dubai

Price: $20,000–70,000

Iranian-born artist Sara Rahbar’s work looks like it’s made to be on permanent display on Governors Island. Here, she’s rendered weapons useless, using them as materials for sculptures, and has hand-stitched military-grade canvas and American flags with found objects related to war.

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