Now in its 8th Edition, Moniker Art Fair, the world’s biggest urban art fair, opened its doors on a newly expanded space in London’s Old Truman Brewery. For 2017, Moniker offered a unique programme giving visitors a chance to map the evolution of street art in the heart of London’s East End, since its beginnings in post-depression 1930s America. Here is our recap from the venue.
Moniker 2017’s theme ‘Transient Tales’ showcased not only the origins of street art but additionally highlights the importance and impact of migration and travel on the arts. Among the 100 artists exhibiting at the fair will be those paying homage to the hobo culture that emerged nearly 90 years ago, where grifters taking trains across the country would leave symbols – called tags or monikers – on the walls of freight cars and settlements to denote ‘police presence’, ‘safety’ or ‘food’.
A collection of the tags has already appeared as part of the Barbican’s Jean-Michel Basquiat retrospective which has just opened. At Moniker Art Fair, a number of documentarians exhibited works and screening films which explore the wider concept and its eventual transformation into urban art as we know it today, alongside those who represent the future of the genre.
With Moniker’s long-standing history of bringing the globe’s most influential new-contemporary and urban art galleries together, they will continue to accommodate the rise in interest of urban art and its related subcultures by doubling the number of exhibitors, with major galleries attending from as farflung areas as California, Hong Kong, Canada, South Africa and Japan.
Moniker has observed and encouraged urban art’s surge in popularity which has become a steadily growing source of value for top collectors for what is the art world’s fastest-growing contemporary sector.
Now in its 8th year, Moniker Art Fair aims to spotlight emerging and established talent from a burgeoning and increasingly diverse contemporary art movement forged by its subversive and innovative spirit. Staged during London’s most important art week in October, Moniker Art Fair attracts some of the most talked about artists, galleries and collectors from the finer side of the street art movement and its related subcultures.
Moniker rallies against the familiar grind of the art fair season with a curated, experiential and immersive focus, creating unique settings for the display of artists and their work. With a proven track record of delivering a rich and varied programme since its formation in 2010, the fair has grown significantly since its inception both in terms of audience and relevance.
As part of Moniker outdoor mural programmes, exhibiting artists created new works on the streets of London featuring Dulk, Telmomiel, Jaune, Whatisadam and London-based artist Ben Slow:
Coverage and photos Julie