The Other Art Fair – a Private View, Thursday 23 April 2015
The Other Art Fair opened last night with a private view, thronged with art lovers circling the stands with great enthusiasm (particularly after a visit to the Fever-Tree G&T bar). The event which spans this weekend, enables artists to represent their own work, and make connections with customers eager to buy a piece of art to take home. The general absence of gallerists and professional collectors makes The Other Art Fair a much more relaxed affair than the likes of Frieze, but in no sense is the work on show any less interesting or collectible. Indeed, as “visiting artist” Gavin Turk was the solitary big-league YBA presence but there is a wealth of lesser-known talent to explore, with photography, illustration and painting particularly in evidence. Highlights for me included Dan Hillier’s breathtaking prints which combine elements of the Gothic imagination with shamanistic symbolism, and Mark Powell’s incredibly detailed portraits, painstakingly created in biro over vintage postcards and other postal “documents”. Barbara Nati’s hyperreal composite photographs of futuristic buildings in natural settings, painter David Wightman’s three dimensional landscapes (painted over layers of textured wallpapers) in strong, fashion-friendly colour combinations and the delightfully named Archie Proudfoot’s stunning mirrored, gilded signs are just a few of the other artists whose work I’d be happy to find wallspace for at home for. The Other Art Fair is definitely worthy of some of your time this weekend, whether you’re in the market to buy or not, the opportunity to converse with artists this directly is normally restricted to open studio events and there are some real treats to discover (and save up for).
The Other Art Fair, April 23-26, Victoria House, (entrance on Southampton Row), Bloomsbury Square, London WC1A 2QP.