Presenting 130 of the best emerging artists, handpicked by an influential selection committee The Other Art Fair returns to East London’s Old Truman Brewery on 6-9 October. We speak to the Director, Ryan Stanier to gain an insight into the mission, identity and future ambition of the Fair.
A: This year’s edition at The Old Truman Brewery in London presents 130 of the best emerging artists handpicked by a committee of art industry experts. Can you offer an insight into the selection process, and what the committee looks for?
RS: For each Fair a highly regarded independent Selection Committee is appointed who work closely with the Fair Director to ensure a diverse range of artists are chosen. The process is driven purely by meritocracy and the Selection Committee are asked to select a number of artists each who present a strong body of work which will sit well within the Fair, and who they feel recognize and represent the value of the fair beyond artwork sales.
A: You aim to create a platform for the ‘unexpected’ at the fair, what can audiences look forward to this October?
RS: Our recent partnership with the world’s leading online art gallery, Saatchi Art, has inspired a technology theme for October’s fair. The Guardian are providing a special feature at this year with their first Virtual Reality series “6×9”, which places visitors in an interactive virtual segregation cell to demonstrate the effects of long-term solitary confinement. Our younger visitors can get involved in a series of coding workshops run by Primo, who have invented Cubetto, the first coding toy of its kind to work without a screen. We also have our usual packed schedule of talks including TED-style talks from the ‘Lets Be Brief Soap Box’, and hands-on workshops from Poppy’s Papercuts, a Geo-fleur terrarium workshop and Grain and Knot’s spoon carving workshop.
A: Are there any developments or trends that you have noticed over recent years, both in the practice and display of contemporary art?
RS: One of the most prominent developments in Contemporary Art is the presence of digital networks that have opened the gateway to an alternative collection of artists. For artists, understanding the importance of having an online presence is crucial to expanding their network of followers and subsequently the more opportunities they will have to promote themselves and to sell their work.
A: Where do you hope to take The Other Art Fair in future?
RS: Our inaugural Fair in Sydney year last was incredibly successful and with the second edition coming up at the end of October we hope to expand across Australia in the near future. We’re also looking towards America for next summer and hope to be run several editions of The Other Art Fair across 12 different cities all over the world within the next three years.
The Other Art Fair, Old Truman Brewery, 6-9 October. To find out more, visit www.theotherartfair.com
1. Tommy Clarke, Coloured Containers (2011). Courtesy of TOAF.