As we noted at last year’s Armory Week, art fairs of this scale tend to draw some of the world’s most eccentric personalities, and this year’s sloppy weather certainly failed to deter them from their annual pilgrimage to Piers 92 & 94. The resulting crowd of art-lovers, gallerists, artists, and collectors who flocked to Armory for its VIP preview provided plenty of entertainment and comedic relief from an awe-inspiring, yet exhausting exhibition of contemporary art. While we often expect the giants of the fine art world to be cerebral, maybe even somewhat cold, art fairs like Armory reveal their behind-the-scenes persona and actually serve to humanize them.


We frequently gave our eyes a break from all the art-viewing the day had to offer and tuned our ears into the crowd’s conversations and interactions with their favorite booth attendants. Here are some of our favorite exchanges we overheard in our people-watching endeavors:


Man considering purchasing some anime art: “Nah, my wife would kill me.”


Gallerist: “Yeah, the t-shirts only cost $100 to make, and we are already sold out! That’s why I tell my artists they should make t-shirts, not art!”


Man looking at a Basquiat: “That’s sick as fuck, yo.”


Woman: “Wine and yoga don’t really mix…or do they?”


Man looking at a work by a very established artist: “This one’s great, but the line work is off in the other one. What the fuck is wrong with her?”


Gallerist: “Let me know if you have any questions about the work.”

Man: “Yeah, um, what is it?”


Artist pushing a trolley full of canvases through the crowd (referring to himself): “Famous artist coming through.”


Man: “Trump is terrible.”

Woman: “Oh, it’s good that you know that!”


Guy asking a gallerist about a famous (and very pricey) work: “So, is this meant for the bedroom, or the office, or what?”


Woman walks into a wall that was painted to look like a door: “Oh…it’s art…”


Man: “There’s a lot of out-there stuff at this show.”

Artist: “Yeah there’s a lot of, like, art, man.”


One elderly woman to another elderly woman walking out of a very avant-garde` booth: “You mean you’ve never done acid before?”


Elderly, famous artist to a male journalist approaching him: “Is that your girlfriend over there? She’s very pretty. I would much rather talk to her.”


Me: “Do you have any advice for an aspiring collector?”

Collector: “No, I’m quite drunk right now.”


Top Image // Jennifer Calais | Courtesy of the Armory Show