EVENTS: The Other Art Fair and Moniker Festival

Written by: Victoria Highfield

Hells YES it’s London Art Week!

With all eyes on Freize this week, our contributor Victoria Highfield swung by Moniker Art Fair to see a unique side of the art market. Moniker Art Fair and The Other Art Fair come together under one roof to showcase independent and international talent from street art to beyond.

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It’s about 7pm and I rock up at the iconic Truman Brewery, Brick Lane to a queue of eccentric, well dressed art lovers chatting excitedly about the Moniker Art Fair.  This week has been a buzz for art lovers. Staged during London’s biggest art weeks alongside Frieze, this is art fair is definitely one you should try and catch. Whilst Frieze showcases established names, Moniker champions emerging talent and has many affordable pieces to purchase.

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Walking around the space, I soon found that this particular fair goes against the demystifying art-buying process and directly connects you with the artists. There really is something for everyone, from stunning aerial photography by Tommy Clarke to Mark Mcclure’s multi-coloured geometric sculptures. If you’re into your art as more of a status piece then there’s work from big names Banksy and Tracy Emin. However some of Emin’s work was met with controversy as it often is (just think about that bed), with one critic claiming £350 was ‘plain ridiculous for a miniature sculpture of what looked like ‘a snowman made by a child’.

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Although the latter wasn’t to my taste, I was pleased to see her striking nudes and trademark neon art on display with a price mark with, at a stretch, I could actually afford! I’ve been to art fairs before and this was the first one that had an actual payment plan. I was used to artworks being unattainable unless you were willing to drop a minimum of a couple of hundred quid here and there. But with prices set from £16 a month my dream art was starting to become a reality *squeals*.

Moniker Art Fair provides a refreshing view on the art world that feels fun, flirty and interactive. With a vintage bar serving delicious Moniker cocktails, a banging playlist and interactive art experiences it was a fair with a difference.

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It also touched on v. topical issues that us Londoner’s face E.g.  Jasper Joffe’s Brexit Photo Booth and Anna Fafaliou’s Sleep Project – a choreographed audience participatory sleeping performance. Basically a bunch of attractive people ‘asleep’ on the floor which on paper sounds like a load of shit but in flesh was a strangely hypnotic experience.

My favourite experience was the Artful Postcard project run through The Other Art Fair. It aimed to bring the joy back into receiving post – you won’t find bills, adverts and delivery menus here! The project allows visitors to send unique and personalised works of art to their friends, family or even themselves all in postcard form.

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It’s inspired by our current obsession with social media and our lack of conversing by the written word (don’t forget to instagram it though: P)  Simply pick up a blank, stamped postcard from the Artful Postcard stand, fill in the delivery address and hand it to any participating fair artist to decorate, design and doodle over as they wish. 

Your loved ones can expect this small surprise through the postbox within 2 weeks after the fair. It was a cute reminder for me to send a message to my old romantic, nostalgia loving brother in Edinburgh.

Highlights of today’s schedule are limited edition print signings by Jealous Gallery and Reload Gallery and an art conference about how to make your mark on the arts.

Moniker Art Fair is on at The Old Truman Brewery, 91 Brick LaneShoreditch, London E1 6QL

Sunday 9th October 2016 11am-6pm

 

See their Twitter @monikerprojects or their website. 

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