Inside the Outsider Art Fair

RUN! don’t walk to The Outsider Art Fair at the Metropolitan Pavilion this weekend in New York City. Unlike big top art fairs, the gallerists presenting here are often quirky and eager to share the story behind the art — and the stories are priceless. Here you will come across the “Poppet Dolls” of a lifelong Tarot reader from Astor place, a Swiss painter who can tell you why donkeys are good and birds are bad and the art of  “Nambia.”

The Art at the fair is affordable unless your looking for a Bill Traylor, of which there is plenty, but I recommend keeping your eyes peeled for luring images. They have something vivid to tell you. The gallerists will share their archives and take you on a rapture, many having themselves spent time in the world of the creators.

And so, without further ado here are my favorite digs from this years fair.

«Le petit théâtre» de Gérard Cambon presented by gallery Pol Lemétais


Genisis of the Nambias: A blunder of Donal Trump

In September of 2017, during a meeting with African leaders at the United Nations,  President Trump made two references to a country called “Nambia” which does not exist. At this a new country was born.  It was a wonderful opportinty to create a new people. The Nambias!

These Nambias testify of the richness and diversity of our humanity: Sun Worshippers, harvesters, fishermen, hunters and adventurers, Fakir, voodoo, Tainos, evangelists and warlords.


Onward,  for someone who reacts to raw emotion and rich archetypal symbolism in art— I instantly fell in love with the works of Annette Barcelo, a 77 year old Swiss artist working profusely in oils. As the Galerie Anne De Villapoix tenderly explained, she paints non-stop.

Annette Barcelo presented by Galerie Anne De Villapoix5C065F33-5713-4FF3-A109-C3D14C5F5D55.JPGOnwards,

These are images from their archive in which Barcelo depicts her stay at a hospital. She describes the Donkey as good symbol in her work, and the bird as harmful as it can fly over ones head. Personally — I can see it as a metaphor for some rather demanding contemporary art I have seen recently.


As a native New Yorker and Jungian fanatic I could not help but gush over this wall of primeval voodoo like dolls made by Angela Rogers. This magnum Opus is called The Celestial Choir and is presented by The Fountain House Gallery.

«Celestial Chior» by Angela Rogers presented by Fountain House GalleryIMG_0084

The artist states that this collection is a love letter to queens in the tarot. Rogers has thirty five years experience of reading tarot cards in the East Village, she refers to her creations as “Poppets” which is an old English spelling of the word puppet. Used in folk magic and witchcraft poppets were originally made from corn husk, cloth, or sticks and used for magical purposes like conjuring.


Recently I debated with a friend who hates the term outsider art, she claims “art is art!” and there should be no diving lines. If that is so, then it is The Outsider Art Fair that capable of removing them.

Metropolitan Pavilion

125 W. 18th Street
New York, NY 10011


Friday, January 17: 11 AM – 8 PM

Saturday, January 18: 11 AM – 8 PM

Sunday, January 19: 11 AM – 6 PM