Showcasing work by 130 contemporary artists, specially selected by an expert-led selection committee, each edition of the fair provides visitors with the opportunity to discover and buy art directly from emerging artists - your chance to invest in the maker!
London Futures unveils the work of 20 emerging artists exhibiting in the city for the first time.
Our London Futures exhibitor list will be revealed shortly, so keep watch!
The Guardian is pleased to announce the launch of Underworld, its first virtual reality project on Daydream View, Google’s platform for high quality, mobile VR.
Underworld invites viewers to explore the subterranean labyrinth of London’s Victorian sewers that lie active, deep beneath one of the world’s most famous cities. Guided by urban explorer and geographer Bradley Garrett, the experience begins in one of London’s lost waterways, the old river Fleet, and continues through the blood sewers under Smithfield meat market and down to the floodgates of the River Thames. During the experience historian Richard Barnett explains how the Great Stink in 1858 motivated parliament to embark on a major engineering project to build and modernise London’s sewer system, thus ending the capital’s cholera crisis. At a fork in the tunnels, viewers can choose their own pathway - one takes them on a journey with Will Self to explore the mythological allure of the underworld as a place for the dead and another features the story of the ‘flushers’ - the people who work in the sewers.
The project has been created by the Guardian’s in-house VR team and The Mill. It is the first in a series of six editorially independent virtual reality films which the Guardian will launch on Daydream over the course of the next 18 months.
A tongue-in-cheek interactive shop installation by artist Darren Cullen, Pocket Money Loans questions the corporate messaging behind many of the adverts we see today.
Pocket Money Loans is a payday loan shop for kids, offering children an advance on their pocket money at 5000% interest. We also offer bouncy castle mortgages, rent-to-own gobstoppers and part-finance options for new toy cars. Any children who find themselves in significant financial difficulty as a result of our services can also sell their new or used teeth to us using our Tooth Fairy service.
The shop also allows kids to pawn in their old toys for £££s, which can be found on display in the front window. Toys such as Action Man: Battlefield Casualties, Baby’s First Baby, Multicoloured Bits of Plastic and the “mind-alteringly addictive” Sherbet Pipe.
Pocket Money Loans aims to draw attention to the way children are bombarded with corporate propaganda messages. Companies use child-focused advertising to groom the next generation of customers while kid's brains are still under development, in part because children below the age of 9 are unable to tell commercial messages apart from non-commercial ones, and are unaware that advertising is subconsciously manipulating their desires and aspirations. Brands also know that if they capture the imagination and affections of a child, they can rely on them as a customer well into adulthood.
This becomes all the more objectionable when the companies involved in this marketing are payday loan sharks, offering some of the most dangerous financial products available by law. Or when military recruiters help develop the British army’s very own toy range and orchestrate military appearances at family fun day events, so that children will yearn to one day become a professional murderer on behalf of the state.
(b. 1983, UK/IRL)
Darren Cullen is a satirical artist, illustrator and writer, born in Leeds to Irish parents and currently based in South London. He initially wanted to go into advertising as a career, studying it at Leeds College of Art he learned the language and techniques of the medium but became steadily horrified at the ethical implications involved. Claiming that “manipulating the desires and aspirations of the public, and especially children, using an arsenal of sophisticated and emotionally damaging psychological techniques is an appalling way to make a living and an even worse way to sustain an economy.”
Cullen abandoned advertising to study Fine Art at Glasgow School of Art. He now uses the language of advertising to make work about the empty promises of consumerism and the lies of military recruiters. Releasing his first comic, an anti-army recruitment booklet sarcastically called ‘Join the Army’ in 2013 (bethemeat.co.uk).
As well as 'Pocket Money Loans', Cullen recently wrote a series of short films called 'Action Man: Battlefield Casualties' (battlefieldcasualties.co.uk) to draw attention to the way the Ministry of Defence targets children as young as five with its official toy range, 'HM Armed Forces', which includes an RAF Drone Playset. Cullen says he is, “especially interested in the point where the terrible requirements of our system collide with the innocence of childhood. Children’s play, like every other aspect of human life, has been colonised by capitalism, adapted as it is into a sort of childhood training camp for the hard-working consumers and soldiers of tomorrow.”
Specially commissioned for this edition of The Other Art Fair, Graeme Messer’s multi-disciplinary installation candidly addresses his own desire for love, approval and applause. “Who am I trying to impress?” “What does ‘making it’ mean?” “Does it matter anyway?” These are some of the questions that emerge as the artist acknowledges, explores and celebrates the mixed motivations that lie behind the creative process.
Combining the written word with light-art, assemblage and performance, Graeme employs a wry sense of humour and deceptively light touch to create work that is direct, funny, moving, often uncomfortable, and always unashamedly autobiographical.
Fusing everyday cooking with modern ingredients The Modern Pantry Pop-up Restaurant presents a delightful and delicious menu by leading chef Anna Hanson.
MODERN comes from the Latin term modernus; pertaining to, or characteristic of the current period. It conjures up the excitement of something new, fresh and original.
PANTRY comes from the Latin word panis, meaning bread. A pantry is a cupboard or room which houses the necessities of life...
Together, these two words embody The Modern Pantry's philosophy: the desire to please and excite the palate by fusing everyday cooking with modern ingredients.
Quench your thirst with mouth-watering gin & tonics and delicious cocktails at the Double Dutch Spirit & Tonic Bar, or pick up a refreshing cold craft beer at the Central Bar.
Our friends at Own Art will make buying art at The Other Art Fair a whole lot easier by letting you spread the cost of your new purchase over a period of 10 months with an interest free loan.
It could not be more simple - once you've chosen the artwork you want, just head over to the Own Art desk where we will help you set up your 10-month payment plan, from there you're free to go with your new art work in hand!
For any questions, please get in touch.
Younger visitors can unleash their artistic flair and participate in creative art activities and crafty challenges in the Kids Create corner.
** Children’s activities free of charge and suitable for all ages.
** Visitors under the age of 16 can enter the fair free of charge.