Art15 is moving into its third edition this May in Kensington Olympia. The aim is to stage in 150 galleries from 40 different countries; extending from Amman to Amsterdam, Kenya to Korea, New York to New Delhi, Sao Paulo to Seoul and beyond. The fair aims to present art from across the globe. Also, presenting a selection of London’s primary art book publishers and independent bookshops including Thames & Hudson, Magma and Laurence King Publishing. The Art15 Bookstore may give an opportunity to browse and buy books, pick up prints, hear talks and attend signings. “Given its diverse and often unexpected content, everyone – from private museum owners and collectors to curators and art lovers – has the opportunity to explore something new,” says Kate Bryan, the Fair Director.
Contemporary photography remains a core component for Art15 with photography displays including Béla Dóka at Faur Zsófi Gallery, Hungary. Doka’s most recent project is “Studio Panindigan,” a series of portraits taken in a remote fishing village in the Philippines. The theme seems to capture the essence of the people who live a simple life, trying to meet their basic needs, without any real material wealth – however these individuals radiate a dignity and a human pride that is worthy of a king or queen. Fan Club Putin, another interesting project may be on display at Photo London from May 21–24.
The art from the ever-burgeoning Asian markets may also be explored at the fair. From India, there are three galleries participating including Sanchit Art, Gallery Sumukha and Delhi Art Gallery. The three artists from Sanchit Art – M F Husain, Thota Vaikuntam and Neeraj Goswami – represent three phases of modernity in Indian art emphasising on the art life in the sub-continent. In response to an increased presence from Taiwanese collectors, this year nine galleries from Taiwan are participating including Lin & Lin Gallery, AKI Gallery and Yiri Arts.
The Fair is assumed to witness the highest number of solo artist presentations to date with new exhibitors; Artistique Design Gallery (Qatar) showcasing Fatma Alshebani, exploring the charm of the Arabic history through the Batoula, revisiting memories of her childhood, the beautiful faces covered by a mask that holds behind many stories to tell; ARNDT (Berlin/Singapore) showcasing the Filipino painter Rodel Tapaya; 10 Chancery Lane (Hong Kong), who are dedicating their space to Huang Rui, a Chinese artist known for his social and cultural condemnation; Australian artist Kate Shaw may be creating work on site at Fehily Contemporary’s stand (Melbourne); Zipper Galleria (São Paolo) present one of Brazil’s rising stars James Kudo; Sulger-Buel Lovell (Cape Town/London) showcase the work of emerging sculptor Isabelle Grobler; and the prominent British painter Stella Vine presents new work at COB Gallery (London). There is a greater presence of Modern art, particularly Italian Modernism as seen in a presentation from new exhibitor, Switzerland’s Cortesi Gallery.
Art15 has an extensive public programme again this year, with a dedicated series of talks integrating into the Fair’s curatorial initiatives. These include Freedom Audit, an exhibition curated by Kathleen Soriano, independent curator and former Director of Exhibitions at the Royal Academy of Arts. The exhibition is a curatorial enquiry considering how artists from across the globe navigate the multifarious boundaries of sexual freedoms, political freedoms and freedom of speech.
A second curatorial initiative is the unpredictable digital art project, #IRL (in-real-life), curated by Valentina Fois and involving the creation of a large-scale digital commission by two artists – Emilie Gervais and Sara Ludy – in real-time during the Fair. Complementing this may be further curatorial initiatives, talks and projects, as well as a section dedicated to non-profit institutions.
Food 4 Art, the pop-up restaurant at Art15, may reveal why London is now acknowledged to be a gastronomic capital. Art and cooking have always been interdependent – even without food in a garret might provide creative pressure – and what gladdens the eye may sit close to what gratifies the palate.
Art15 is at Olympia, London from May 21-23, read more here.
What role does contemporary art has to play in modern lives?