With this question in mind I took a trip to this years ‘Affordable Art Fair’ in Battersea.
This was the 20th anniversary of the Affordable Art fair. With 114 Galleries from all over the world coming together to exhibit their works.
For any newbie art collectors this is a great place to visit and find inspiration.
Choosing art for the home can be a tricky event. However, these large art shows will have such a variety of styles and mediums, that you are sure to find something that appeals.
When deciding on your purchase just be sure that you are buying it because you love it. Make sure it’s not just a fashionable trend of the moment that you will tire of. Or, the worst crime ever – it matches the curtains!! If you love a painting or a work of art – create a room that it can live happily in.
I had not visited this show for a couple of years and it became evident immediately that affordability had changed since my last visit. Previously there had been a top limit of £4,000, whereas, this year, it appears that £6,000 is now affordable. That being said there were only a few that did top the £6,000 price tag. With most of the exhibits, ranging between £250 and £3000.
So should you choose a painting, a print, a sculpture or mixed media work? Well, just have a browse at some of the pieces that we spotted and you can decide for yourself. From the famous names to the unknown graduates. From traditional oil paintings to the abstract and totally bizarre the art fair had it all.
Affordable Art – MIXED MEDIA
Three dimensional Wall art will always make a statement in a room. This year the theme was leaning towards retro. At Tag Fine Arts there were Love Hearts by Dean Zeus and Su’Sun and Bubble Gum’ by Lawrie Hutcheon. I loved the thread creations by Son il at the Korean Gaga Gallery.
An interesting collection from Galerie Artima with collages from Charles Fazzino and compressed paper creating the ‘Rolling Stones’ by Joel Cuoq.
More mixed media at The Rohen Art Gallery from Sandra Westgeest . With recycled Sardine tins being used by Ortaire de Coupigny, to create his wall sculptures.
At Art Movement, C Preston was showing a series of origami birds and over at Tag Arts Albero Fusco was showing sculpting paper with his ‘Priapus’. Paolo Ceribelli displaying plastic solidiers in his design ‘Tutto Torna’.
I find, with Sculpture that as wells being in awe of beautiful pieces, I am drawn to the curious and intriguing. So, it seems fitting to start with some unusual designs. At Reload Gallery, ‘Time and Tide’ is created by Mason Storm and ‘From Dust’ a work by Splice.
Below we have a contemporary take on blue delftware, with ceramic figures on posts by Pierre Williams, at Green Stage Gallery. Matilde de Montsegur has also produced an encased curiosity, with his skull, ‘Flamande XVIIs.
At The Brown Easel Gallery, sculpture by Nimesh Pilla and the bizarre hand-standing Bull, in Aluminium, by Shen Jing Dong.
The graceful giraffe below are a piece in bronze by Helen Gordon. Claire Trenchard was exhibiting ‘The Acrobats handstand’ at The Flying Colours Gallery. And I fell in love with this stylised deer by Arno Sebban at Xin Art Galerie.
It’s great when animals have a character and none more so than David Cookes ‘Who invited the Owl Man?’. Nichola Theakston at Dekunst Salon also evokes emotion with her ‘Sacred Lemur’. Another sculpture in bronze is quite deceptive with it’s colourful design – ‘Gunard’ by Shelly Anderson at the Lighthouse gallery.
More elegant Bronze work from Shelly Anderson with her Shark and finally the fascinating ‘Bionic Bee’ by Onyx. Created with found and re-cycled objects.
Photographers these days are using their skills combined with digital manipulation to create surreal and compelling images. The flower portraits of Michelle Elwell at Skylark Galleries were striking with their layers of vivid colour. In contrast, Margarete Schrufer from Germany has created a subtle and somewhat ethereal floral image.
I have often admired the work of dutch artist Yvonne Michiels at De KunstSalon. Her contemporary portrait images are created with her own photography and some clever creativity in photoshop. Judging by the amount of red sold stickers she received by the images, she is a very popular artist.
There is nothing more beautiful than decaying grandeur which Dan Oude Elferink achieved to perfection with his beautiful photograph of ‘The Thirteenth floor’. At first it seems to be a relection – but closer scrutiny reveals the hollow shell of the building and the view to the floor below.
Affordable Art – PRINTS
Two Artists that I did not expect to see there were Jonathan Yeo and Marc Quinn, exhibiting with London Gallery, Manifold Editions. Both artists’s being names that I would not usually associate with affordable art.
However, even famous names can produce prints. Usually one of the more affordable alternatives to original works. Prints are produced in limited editions with the more expensive often produced with fewer copies available.
Jonathan Yeo was showing a couple of sentimental Heart frames with printed falling Autumn leaves. It’s only on closer inspection that you can see that the leaves are made from fragmented images cut from porn magazines. This artists started his career producing portraits from a collage made from porn magazines – so this is not a new concept. The artists states it’s ‘commenting on how porn has become almost invisible in its pervasiveness in society’. However valid that may be I am still not sure it’s something that I would want hanging on my wall.
Marc Quinn’s work is focused Identity. Firstly focused on the human eye. An image entitled ‘A map where you can’t see the stars, Atlantic view’. Screen printed with diamond dust in an edition of 50.
You couldn’t miss the series of prints by Mark Denton at Jealous. The concept is based on the Iconic Chinese Girl by Vladimir Trechikoff in 1952 which became one of the best selling mass produced prints of the 20th Century. A great choice for Mid Century Modern lovers that want to add a contemporary edge to their style.
At ContempoArti this portrait of Amy Winehouse by David Studwell caught my eye. Also using Diamond dust to embellish the screen print.
Affordable Art – PAINTINGS
Paintings are always a popular choice and I have selected just a few of the artists on show. The choice is broad – from traditional landscapes and abstract art to contemporary paintings and photorealism.
Tom Bushel at The Linda Blackstone Gallery was showing a selection of his Abstract work. A fabulous selection of paintings at The Aboriginal Art Galleries – the colours were stunning. ‘ My Country’ being the work of Yipi & Damien. Paintings inspired by Myths and Legends from well-known Argentinian artist, Gustavo Ortiz were on Display at the Olivia Connelly Gallery.
Example of contemporary paintings from Paul Powis, Green Stage Gallery. Adrian Sykes ‘Tree House’ and popular Street Artist Xenz at Olivia Connelly Gallery.
And finally, contemporary photorealism. So often you find photography imitating art and art imitating photography. I have chosen two artists who use such a detailed approach to their painting. Christopher Green, with his simple composition of a Chrome Kettle at George Thompson Art and Navarro, at The Tyne, with his strawberries and foil, still life.
AlthoughI have only been able to show a small selection of the exhibits, I do hope you have been inspired by the vast collection of Contemporary Art there is to choose from. A trip to an Art fair is always a fun way to find and discover Art for your home. For details on next years show at Battersea or to find an Affordable Art Fair near you visit their website at www.affordableartfair.com
Please be aware that any information on this post shows an indication of the costs for a Framed work, at the time of the show. Please check with the relevant Artists and Galleries for availability and latest pricing.
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