We dropped by the Affordable Art Fair‘s “Private View” on Thursday night, thanks to an invitation from Sotheby’s Institute of Art. Our viewing was hardly private; the F1 Pit Building was packed and the evening was chaotic and overwhelming. AAF, in Singapore and elsewhere, is as much a venue to purchase affordable* contemporary art as it is a place to see and been seen. (I dressed for the former and not the latter. Oops!)
Despite the event’s faux-glitzy, madhouse-like vibe, it was an enjoyable and educational evening. We discovered a few new local galleries and reacquainted ourselves with others. A few highlights:
– Garie Waltzer, an acclaimed American photographer, at Cabaleiro de Meuser Art & Design. Waltzer exhibited two photographs of Singapore (above), taken as part of her on-going Living Cities series. These large-scale black-and-white images of urban civic spaces blend a formalist vision with dense urban iconography. We have our eyes on these and may return on Sunday for a second look.
– Ketna Patel’s kitschy and striking mixed-media pop-art. We discovered Ketna Patel Studio, an appointment-only “residential laboratory for like-minded people,” at last year’s AAF. Her Asia Pop series of art and furniture is inspired by the narratives embedded in Asian street culture.
– Original Prints 2011, a series of limited edition prints created by ten Singapore-based artists at Art and Printmaking Studio. Artist and printmaker Marisa Keller teaches non-toxic printmaking techniques and focuses on etchings, monoprints, and relief prints. Information about Keller’s February etching workshops here.
o o o o o
* What constitutes “affordable” art is highly subjective, of course. AAF Singapore showcases art priced between SG$100 and SG$10,000. Tickets to the fair are truly affordable: SG$8 via SISTIC and SG$10 at the door. Go this weekend and report back here.
(Additional credits: Singapore/Port #1, 2011. Carbon pigmented inks on rag paper; Singapore/Port #2, 2011. Carbon pigmented inks on rag paper. Images courtesy of the artist.)