Art What! Visual Art

Art What!: Affordable Art Fair Singapore returns after 3-year hiatus

After a three-year hiatus, the 15th edition of Affordable Art Fair Singapore returns this weekend, running from 18 – 20 November at the F1 Pit Building to reconnect and engage with art lovers, collectors, and the art community. This also makes it the first major, international art fair in the country since the pandemic.

Featuring 80 local and international galleries from 21 countries, this year’s Fair showcases thousands of artworks from over 650 emerging and established artists. From contemporary oil paintings to life-size sculptures, there will be a variety of mediums and styles (and price tags) to suit every taste, space and spend.

Studio-ID Art Gallery: Akihiro Fujimoto’s Soul – Lily of the Valley (2018)

Fair Director Alan Koh says the Fair is dedicated to supporting the local art ecosystem by building new art lovers and to be the bridge between its family of trusted galleries and a community of seasoned art collectors. “After a three-year break, we are delighted to bring the Fair back to our art-loving audience in Singapore. Galleries near and far have been supportive and excited with the reopening of Singapore from the pandemic, and we are ready to help thousands of artworks find happy homes,” says Koh.

In this edition, Affordable Art Fair continues to champion its welcoming approach, catering to visitors from all spectrums of the art world, of all ages. The aim is to keep things fresh, particularly with its slew of programmes meant to make art accessible to all, showcasing art as a means for psychotherapy, the possibilities that the world of AR and technology art offers, and even a tactile art space for children to encounter art they can interact with.

Amidst the 80 galleries, returning to this year’s Fair are veteran exhibitors from Singapore, Utterly Art and REDSEA Gallery, and Quantum Contemporary Art, a London gallery, all of whom have participated in every Singapore show since it launched in 2010. Also back are Singapore’s oldest and most established art gallery, Art Forum, and The Tolman Collection Tokyo, the largest publisher of contemporary Japanese graphics.

Wasuka Art presents Margaret Lau’s ‘Calbee Pizza Japan’ (2021)

Wasuka Art from Singapore and Once Gallery from Beijing will make its Fair debut this year. Returning galleries include La Lanta Fine Art from Bangkok; Manyung Gallery Group from Melbourne; and South Africa’s Barnes Collective.

Other highlights include:

Arty-Licious Evening (18 November, 6pm-9pm)
A popular Friday evening event for art lovers with a charitable cause. Joining hands with official charity partner Singapore Cancer Society (SCS), Affordable Art Fair Singapore will donate $2 to SCS for every Arty-Licious Evening ticket sold. The evening’s fun-filled programme includes an Adam and Eve live model sketching workshop by Visual Arts Centre at $38 per person (50% donated to SCS); coaster-making workshop led by SCS at $20 per person (50% donated to SCS); and a performance by Spanish artist Susana Sanromán (free). Bubblies and refreshments are available for purchase. Tickets are priced at $25 and allow multiple re-entry on other days.

Feature Exhibition I: #SPOTLIGHT (Ongoing)

From whimsical sculptures, vibrant still-life paintings to jaw-dropping hyperrealist sketches, visitors are invited to #SPOTLIGHT for a must-see curation of over 15 emerging and pioneer artists new to the Singapore fair, such as Akihiro Fujimoto, Joaquin Valdez, and Margaret Lau.

One of the highlights among these is a feature by Singaporean pioneer artist Cheo Chai Hiang, known for having popularised interactive art in Singapore in the 1980s and 90s. In 1975, he famously wrote that local art during that period was dominated by the production of “beautiful pictures” that were lacking in conceptual content. He perceived art as a thought process and urged the transformation of local realist art to one that redefined methods of artistic representation. He has exhibited at the National Museum of Singapore and Singapore Art Museum, where ‘Three Long and Two Short Clogs’ was displayed. At the Affordable Art Fair, visitors can view a playful series of works that reimagine wooden clogs in new ways…including kueh moulds.

Feature Exhibition II: Art Galleries Association Singapore (Ongoing)
As a sequel to the inaugural launch back in 2020, the event takes on an experiential approach that transcends beyond the gallery walls while pushing for greater recognition in art appreciation and consumption. Come by AGAS’ booth at the fair for a special preview of galleries participating at SG Gallery Weekend.

House of Joy and House of Dreams, interactive artwork by Katrina Chuang that comes alive through AR technology

The Way We Dance by Dorsett Hospitality International & The Collective (Ongoing)
A travelling Augmented Reality performance art created in response to life during the pandemic, The Way We Dance was previously presented at Affordable Art Fair Hong Kong, Melbourne, London and is now making its debut in Singapore. Dorsett Hospitality International and digital art studio The Collective present this installation that invites visitors to move and groove. Visitors are encouraged to use iPads available at the booth to witness virtual dancers come to life before their very eyes, and showcase the possibilities technology brings to art.

IS THIS ART?! Workshop (Selected timeslots from 18 – 20 November, Suitable for 4 years old and up)
Participants create their own modern art-inspired sculpture in this hour-long workshop that takes them on a journey of answering one of the biggest questions of our time: “What Is Art?”. Participants also have the opportunity to add their own touch to the exhibited works, learn about the Modern Art movement, and make their very own mixed media sculptures. This activity is priced at $25. The 1-hour programme also includes a tour of The Absurd Art Gallery, a tactile art experience where participants can touch and explore creative works of art crafted by young artists.

Affordable Art Fair Singapore 2022 runs from 18th to 20th November 2022 at the F1 Pit Building. Tickets and more information available here

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