The Armory Show
Piers 92 and 96, Twelfth Ave., at 55th St.; 3/2–3/6; Th–S (noon–8 p.m.), Su (noon–7 p.m.); $30, $10 students
This behemoth loves it when you call it big poppa, with its hundreds of exhibitors divided into two sections: Modern (Pier 92) and Contemporary (Pier 94). Besides that there are forums and a film schedule, making it possible to never see daylight.
Fountain New York
Pier 66 and the Frying Pan, Twelfth Ave., at 26th St.; 3/4–3/6; noon–7 p.m.; $10
Named after Duchamp's famous piece, the avant-garde fest features twenty exhibitors, a collaborative mural, and live-action performance art in an offshore setting (so probably best to skip if you get seasick). Funk-infused popster Gordon Voidwell kicks off the festivities at the public reception Friday night.
7W–7 West 34th St., nr. Sixth Ave., 11th fl., 3/3–3/6; Th (3 p.m.–7 p.m.), F–Su (11 a.m.–7 p.m.); $10–$15, $40 Volta and Armory Pass
Midtown gets a creative infusion: This fair's 80 galleries each chose only one artist to represent, which cuts down on the clutter. For an insider's point of view, InContext tours is offering an opportunity to mingle with the artists and discuss works with art critic and fair director Amanda Coulson.
Pulse Art Fair
Metropolitan Pavilion; 125 W. 18th St., nr. Sixth Ave.; 3/3–3/6; Th (1 p.m.–8 p.m.), F–Su (noon–5 p.m.); $20, $15 students and seniors
A contemporary art fair with signature large-scale sculpture, held annually in both New York and Miami. Check out Ben Wolf's site-specific Clamber, an eighteen-foot-long ship's hull salvaged from an abandoned vessel in Newark; or Molly Dilworth's "Field Test," site-specific paintings that use X-ray and electron microscopy images of rare earth elements as visual references.
Verge Art Brooklyn
Antidote, 81 Front St., ground fl., Dumbo; 3/3–3/6; Th–S (noon–10 p.m.), Su (noon–6 p.m.); Free
Art in Brooklyn! This fair turns Dumbo into an art city, with over 70 exhibitors sprawling over nine locations. They do it up right with a dance party opening night at Galapagos running from 9:30 p.m. to 3 a.m., with acts including Sister Anne and Violens.
Waterfront New York Tunnel, 269 Eleventh Ave., nr. 27th St.; 3/3–3/6; Th–S (11 a.m.–8 p.m.), Su (11 a.m.–3 p.m); Free
Single-channel videos and video sculptures selected from international commercial galleries and nonprofit institutions, including artists like Leslie Thornton and David Wojnarowicz. A panel exploring the state of moving-image-based work is scheduled for Saturday, and private tours are available for groups.
Scope Art Show
355 West 36th St., third fl., nr. Ninth Ave., 3/2–3/6; W (VIP and first view, 3 p.m.–8 p.m.), Th–S (noon–8 p.m.), Su (noon–7 p.m.); $10–$15, $20, $10 students, $100 First view
Contemporary art will be shown in all its forms, as one of the larger fairs (taking over a 60,000-square-foot hall with a price tag to match) shows over 50 exhibitors, and this year features "Us vs. Us," five days of performance in the fenced mezzanine.
548 West 22nd St., nr. Tenth Ave.; 3/3–3/6; Th (4 p.m.–9p.m.), F (11 a.m.–8 p.m.), S (11 a.m.–8 p.m.), Su (noon–4 p.m.); Free
It's the second year this impressive gallerist collaboration takes over three floors in the former Dia building in Chelsea, exhibiting over 40 international galleries in an open-layout plan, making it less of a fair and more of a conversation.