I'm sorry, I know, I said I was going to write more about editions … and I will, next time. There is so much going on for art collectors to know about that I don't feel right limiting this to academia, so please be patient and understand that we live in exciting times!
First, a couple of publications that I swear by that keep me up to date on contemporary fine art: Artforum, Art Ltd., Juxtapoz (lots of edge in this one, so be careful...). Glass Quarterly and American Craft, are my favorites for glass sculpture. New American Paintings is great for the latest in regional painterly discoveries. Advice for making a selection? Go to your local newstand (please, find one that carries art mags) and browse browse browse. Obviously, buy the one that you can't put down (we feel for booksellers...), or borrow it from your local library and enjoy.
Exhibitions seem like a no-brainer, but it's surprising how some of the best galleries are completely unnoticed by middle America, leaving the best and the brightest art for the pickings of the very wealthy and adulation of the highly appreciative but sadly very less than wealthy … Please, GO to the galleries! Their efforts to promote their artists are astounding (worthy of much unsung praise), they generally don't charge for your visit, and are amazing repositories of expert information about the artists they represent. With this crrrrazzzy economy, your visit (whether your purchase or not) is welcome welcome welcome (yes, I know, I repeat for emphasis...!).
Art fairs are a lot more than your neighborhood craft show. In the past 10-12 years, they have grown into big big business on an international scale, showing art represented by 'big boy' galleries such as Gagosian and Mary Boone, and attended by everyone from Damien Hirst to the quiet investor with his/her private art consultant to celebrities like Beyoncé (and Jay-Z), Brad Pitt and Robert de Niro. Some of the most famous fairs are Art Basel, Art Basel Miami Beach (billed as the most important art show in the United States, a cultural and social highlight for the Americas), and the Armory Show (international fair of new art) held annually in New York. As a result, smaller, satellite fairs have grown around these fairs where some of the newest galleries around collect to show the latest art, such as at Art Fair Now, Bridge Art Fair, and Frieze, to name just a very very few. SOFA is yet another fair, specific to sculpture in its various iterations as described fully by its proper name - Sculpture, Object and Functional Art.
Lastly (did you think this would never end?! It's been a while and I have a lot to say today...!), if you have a friend (okay, maybe they're not really your friend), who owns, rents, borrows (or God forbid, steals) artwork you love … ask about it and use time tested traditions of word-of-mouth to find what you want.
Good luck and the best to you! Write to me if you have any suggestions or questions or objections to any of this.