Ryan Stanier ensured an exclusive interview to Dodo Newman, sharing his exceptional thoughts why it is important to offer new platforms to talented artists who are often struggling to gain recognition.
The Other Art Fair was born in London, UK and now it offers its platforms in Sydney, Australia and Bristol, UK as well as bringing a breath of fresh air in the art world, creating a fair for artists, rather than galleries.
It enables independent artists to show their work and gives people the chance not only to discover a stimulating range of art under one roof but also to meet artists in person.
“It’s been an inspiration to help curate this year’s fair and exciting to see so many wonderful artists come together to make this such a dynamic fair.” says Rebecca Wilson from Saatchi Art
Five years and thirteen editions on, the effects of the fair’s growing reputation are not only demonstrated through the support of leading individuals in the art world but also the frequency of success stories from past exhibitors.
The success of the visionary idea already paid of since The Other Art Fair is the UK’s leading artist fair to discover and buy art directly from the very best emerging artistic talent.
D.N.: As the founder of the The Other Art Fair how has the art world changed in your view in the last years, what moves the contemporary art world today?
I think one of the biggest things that moves the contemporary art world, and something that we have taken into consideration when planning this edition of the fair is technology and the rate at which it’s advancing today. The industry as a result has become more accessible to a wider audience thanks to these technological advancements. Our recent partnership with Saatchi Art, the world’s leading online art gallery, demonstrates how we are keeping up with these changes as we are now additionally providing an online platform for emerging artists to reach an even wider audience.
D.N.: What role do art fairs play in the life of artists today and how has this changed in the last years?
Art fairs play a large role in physically representing and introducing artists to buyers and the public. It’s still difficult for emerging artists to gain recognition, but art fairs like The Other Art Fair give them the platform they need to springboard off. In recent years it has changed a great deal, especially with the increased presence of social media and online platforms and will continue to change in the future.
D.N.: In your opinion what is the most important thing a contemporary artist would need to follow as his/her first steps into the art world?
Artists just need to use every opportunity they are given to make new contacts, acquire new collectors and to just grow their databases as much as possible. It’s also important for an artist to not under-represent themselves. Using social media and building up a database of contacts and buyers is so important when it comes to establishing oneself in this industry, and not using all the resources available could be the difference between ‘making it’ and not making it in the current contemporary art world.
D.N.: In what way is diversification important for artists today? And how can they achieve it?
There is a lot of pressure on artists to break the mould and to achieve diversification, but artists are always going to be influenced by their predecessors so it’s sometimes not entirely possible. It is important in terms of standing out, especially in an industry where it’s difficult to gain individual recognition. But an artist’s success is based on a lot more than diversification.
D.N.: Do you experience any difference between the representation of contemporary women and men artists around the world?
The unique thing about The Other Art Fair is that it is first and foremost an artist-lead fair, meaning the artists participating are representing themselves. So from my personal experience men and women are equally represented. The Selection Committee handpicks artists based purely on meritocracy and who present a strong body of work which will sit well within the fair, nothing to do with gender.
D.N.: From your extensive experience in the art world, what is it that you think that collectors most look for in contemporary artists and their works when deciding to collect them?
Art is obviously quite a subjective experience. Each collector has their own tastes and ultimately needs to follow his or her own gut instinct when it comes to buying art. Additionally a huge part of the buying-experience especially when buying art face-to-face, is how the artist connects with the collector.
D.N.: How does the Internet and e-representation support in your view artists’ work nowadays?
Digital Networks have opened the gateway to a whole alternative collection of Artists today who perhaps don’t fit the mould; live in remote areas, aren’t great at self-promotion, and are unrepresented. Understanding the importance of having an online presence is crucial to expanding an Artist’s network of followers and subsequently the more opportunities they will have to promote themselves and their work.
D.N.: What advice would you give for contemporary women artists who are at a point of almost giving up on their journey towards art?
Make the most of London’s art scene – there are some amazing new opportunities springing up increasingly frequently. And also utilise social media – not only is it free but it can give you direct access to some influential people in the art world. Finally, and most importantly, persevere!
D.N.: Do you look at the art or the artist?
If you’re at an art fair the art draws you in first visually and then you get chatting to the artist. And more often than not, if you get on well with the artist it can easily sway your decision whether or not to buy one of their pieces.
For those who are interested to read more about this amazing concept of the The Other Art Fair they can visit their official website at: http://www.theotherartfair.com