Published on October 30, 2013 | by Becky Crisp


The Other Art Fair

★★★★ •

Artist Hayden Kays at the Other Fair / Moniker Fair at the Old Truman Brewery. [Aylin Elci]

The Other Art Fair is not your average east London exhibition.

Hidden in The Old Truman Brewery, the show firmly establishes itself as ‘the only event art buyers of all experiences and tastes need attend’.

I felt bad because I didn’t have money to buy art, or any taste in it.

But I knew that I would have a taste for the free wine that is expected from any private art viewing.

I was greeted by a rectangular box on the floor, wrapped in stocking material, with a naked chick pressing her bits from the inside.

It reminded me of Star Wars when Han Solo was sealed in carbonite by Jabba the Hutt.

I just wanted one art fair to offer me substance other than pretentiousness… and surprisingly it did!


It was humble. I’m not saying it wasn’t ‘trendy’ but it was refreshing to see a community coming together.

No moody art-school students showing-off ‘their work’, just to find that they have actually shat on a plate for their final piece.

The artists were modest and open to conversation. There was too much to see.

From the taxidermist/sculptor, Rachel Ann Stevenson to the live 3D printing by design group Modia.

Paint, sweat and tears were on these walls and it was nice to see people buying it. A few beers in, I went to a live demonstration by London Taxidermy Academy.

Elle the taxidermist was stuffing a crow and telling me the ins-and-outs of the Victorian art of preservation.


The only artist that put tongue-in-cheek was Danish illustrator, Frederik Næblerød.

Yes, some of his work was graphic and shared his abrasive humour with a lot of penis drawings. I don’t think Mum would have liked it.

Artist David Shillinglaw at the Other Fair / Moniker Fair at the Old Truman Brewery. [Aylin Elci]

Frederik shed light on how to be a successful student artist.

”Everything is art now. I could cut your hair off right now and take a picture. That is art,” he said. “If you can make money from drawing a pussy, then do it.

“I’m just being honest. No point holding back, doing shit and thinking, ‘Oh, what will the neighbours say?’ Just do what you want to do and if you can make money from it, then great.”

Vikram Kushwah, London College of Communication alumni, fuelled his dream-like photography through a clear and confident narrative.

He mentioned how his fairy-tale work was recently in Vogue and told them how he was inspired. “Like the Romantics, it is my inner self or my sub-conscious where I find inspiration for my pictures. I also tend to look back to the past romantically and thus form dreamscapes through my memory.”

I’ve never seen so many creatives talk about their work and not sound like an idiot. It was not just The Other Art Fair. It was the other art experience of being in an intimate community.

In the shadow of Frieze week, the hundred odd unrepresented artists showed the London art scene how it is done.



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