Preview the Best of New York’s PULSE 2012 Art Fair

After a notable absence from this year’s Armory Week festivities, PULSE 2012 is once again taking place in midtown Manhattan, occupying an airy, well-appointed space that has more in common with a spa lobby than a frenetic art fair. The friendly nature of the location is also reflected in the fair’s overall aesthetic, an approachable combination of media, formats, artists, and galleries from all over the world. At this year’s press preview, the fair presented a mash-up of brightly-colored abstraction (see Anne Lindberg’s mesmerizing installation at Carrie Secrist Gallery), new-media-inflected sculpture (Alan Rath’s excellent “Creature II”), sloppy drawing (Tad Lauritzen Wright’s giant wall at David Lusk Gallery), and even video games, with the Babycastles-curated retrospective of game designer and philosopher Bennett Foddy.

If I had to pick out one highlight, it would probably be video and conceptual artist Eve Sussman’s project for the New York City nonprofit Creative Capital. Using rolls of panoramic film, Sussman documented Brooklyn’s JMZ line at night, exploring the subway’s elevated platforms and lit windows. The film was then set into 3D stereoscopic viewers, which collapse to fit into plastic pouches. The project is at once visual and intellectual, a portable journey for the brain and the eye. See what catches yours in our slideshow of PULSE photos, and if you’re in New York and looking for a more affordable (not to mention more convenient) alternative to Frieze, check it out in person now through Sunday at Metropolitan Pavilion.

Photo credit: Kyle Chayka for Flavorwire. Tinkebell’s taxidermied pony at Torch Gallery