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London Art Fair Returns!

ByThe Artling Team
London Art Fair Returns!

London Art Fair has returned to launch the international art calendar at Islington’s Business Design Centre from 18-22 January 2023.

Explore an exceptional line-up of over 100 leading Modern and Contemporary galleries from across the globe. Discover emerging and established contemporary artists alongside an outstanding selection of 20th century masters. Engage with sensational live performances, immersive installations and an inspiring programme of talks and tours which will provide a timely review of the art market today, highlight trends in photographic practice, share tips on building your art collection, and more. 

The 2023 edition of Photo50 will bring together the work of a group of multigenerational women photographers whose practice engages with their diasporic heritage, and through their lens explores domestic life and the home as not only a physical place but also a space of memory and generational exchange.

The title is taken from the 2019 book Wayward Lives, Beautiful Experiments: Intimate Histories of Riotous Black Girls, Troublesome Women, and Queer Radicals by the American writer Saidiya Hartmann, who writes about the lives of Black women in the US through a lens of fiction, using photographs from the archive and taking a sensory approach to narrating such histories.

The majority of selected artist are based in the UK, but they have a range of diasporic heritages and have made work that reflects their particular histories and ideas around home.

We tried to find a way to allow the photographers space to consider their ideas and share them with us. Some of these voices have not been heard and we feel that they deserve a platform. The exhibition is an opportunity for them to experiment with their ideas without constraints. The beauty in these works is both visual but also emotional as they share intimate domestic or interior moments with the viewer. — Curators: Pelumi Odubanjo and Katy Barron

Adaeze Ihebom, The Artist's Room, 2022.

Bernice Mulenga, Orpheus Jay, 2021.

Each year Platform invites an exclusive selection of galleries to present work by well-known, overlooked and emerging artists aligned to a single distinct theme chosen by a guest curator. The 2023 edition of Platform will shine a spotlight on art history’s most enduring subject, the muse. 

The exhibition will be curated by art historian and author Ruth Millington, whose recently published book ‘Muse’ (Penguin, 2022) reclaims the term in a narrative that celebrates the contributions of artists’ remarkable, real-life models.

Platform 2023 aims to highlight the diverse individuals, past and present, who have inspired artists to draw, sculpt, paint or photograph their immortalising portrait. Turning the tables on traditional accounts, it will invite questions about the collaborative role of the muse, beyond romanticised notions of the passive model. 

Through Platform 2023, participating galleries will bring to life the people behind great pieces of art, reframing the muse as an active agent in the story of art. Taking centre stage, these muses will prove that they have long commanded a crucial place in art history, while they are still an influential force in today’s contemporary art world. Audiences will meet the muses of established names such as Peter Doig, to emerging artists such as Nikoleta Sekulovic and Golnaz Afraz… 

This MUSE Platform will be accompanied by an events programme, including a related performance and a panel discussion in partnership with Sotheby’s Institute of Art, about the role of the muse in the modern world.

Lawson Okeyan, Body Undivided, 1997; Trail with Light, 1994; Analogous Fabric, 1996; Fort Bud: Ban De Sapt, 2017; Body Undivided, 1998; Ero Minneapolis (Member), 2006. Courtesy of Cross Lane Projects.

Sheila Rennick, Floating Off, 2020. Courtesy of Kevin Kavanagh.

Amongst other presentations within this section, unexpected encounters result from a dialogue between intention and chance within an artist’s work. Aleph Contemporary’s exhibition (on stand P9) titled ‘Beyond Borders’ sees a variety of material dragged, cut, spread, glued, and lined, with each method creating a mixture of known and unforeseen outcomes that build into visual spectacles of colour fields and scattered, perspectival fragments. Art Mûr’s stand (P10) features practitioners who similarly embrace elements of chance by allowing their chosen media to dictate the direction that the artworks take, whilst also ensuring that materials are in some sense pushed to their limits in the hands of the artists. 

About London Art Fair 

London Art Fair was founded in 1989 by London’s Business Design Centre in Islington – where the Fair still takes place today – with the aim of providing a space to showcase exceptional Modern and Contemporary Art, to discover and to buy. Launching with just 36 UK galleries London Art Fair has grown steadily over the years with well over 100 galleries now regularly exhibiting and 20,000 visitors attending the Fair. London Art Fair provides an established home for Modern British Art, whilst embracing an increasingly international and contemporary outlook, with new galleries from around the world.

Nurturing collecting at all levels, from prints and editions starting in the hundreds, to major works by internationally renowned artists – notable sales at the 2022 Fair included works by Andy WarholDavid HockneyTheodore Ereira-GuyerDerek Jarman, and Charlotte Keates – London Art Fair provides a platform for nurturing talent too and has played host to acclaimed artists early in their career as well as established names, with Chris Ofili and Jenny Saville awarded ‘rising star’ awards at the 1996 edition.

Dates: 18-22 January 2023
Venue: Business Design Centre, Islington

All images courtesy of London Art Fair.

Any views or opinions in the post are solely those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of the company or contributors.

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