So today the office was busy updating press lists and sending e-mails to organisations. Meanwhile on the other side of the table, Longlong was preparing forms for another upcoming competition.
Having completed the majority of the discussions last week, we all have clear ideas of our individual and collective targets ahead of the April/ May store. As well as this, it means that we can also make detailed and thorough plans which is great to strengthen our vision for the pop-up but also our first permanent store.
So this week has been productive – not least because everyone returned recharged from the weekend. Sophie went to the Royal Opera House on Friday to watch the Royal Ballet perform Sleeping Beauty. For those of you who have seen it you will know that the part of Aurora is considered amongst ballet dancers as one of the most demanding roles. The music of Tchaikovsky is also beautifully iconic and makes ‘Sleeping Beauty’ a part of the core repertoire of most ballet companies.
For Sophie it was a mesmerising evening. Sarah Lamb as Princess Aurora, along with her partner Steven McRae, gave a stunning performance, sincere in emotion and great vivacity in movement. Loud cries of ‘Bravo’ sealed the success of the performance. Sounds like it’s something we all need to see!
So today the office was packed with the team, all busy working away at their laptops and discussing keys issues which branched from previous meetings but also continued on to explore new topics. Discussion centred on the space for the April store itself and our collective visions for how we want it to appear. We’re all really excited to move forward and on to the next stage!
Later into the afternoon we welcomed Skadi, a friend of artFix, to the office. She also contributed her ideas toward the vision of artFix, although from a slightly different angle. Meeting with George, they spent a while exploring ways in which the ‘artFix experience’ could be extended to reach those who do not have such easy access to the high street, for example the elderly or disabled. This is important for us because artFix is a concept which has been developed with all sectors of the public in mind. We want to ensure that the arts are available to absolutely everyone so that everyone can benefit from the experience of engaging with its different forms.
I think it was only fair that after all that hard work we got a chance to absorb the beautiful British weather – wasn’t it such a softly sunny day? So myself, Jilke and Sophie took a stroll down to Soho Square where we joined similar trios of office workers out on their break, watched a little kid chasing away the pigeons and spent a pleasant hour in conversation.
So today is the final day before the event – get excited!! There were a few technical glitches, as can be expected from the first event of any new company, but we are now ready to kick off the ‘artFix Experience’ tomorrow. So drop in at any time between 6 and 8pm to enjoy the launch of a new, creative venture – I’ll be there waiting at the entrance. Can’t wait to meet you all!
Today’s selection of artists come from a range of different backgrounds and are showcasing art from a range of different styles. Our very own Nadia Mowafy, arts producer at artFix London, is also due to showcase her latest work – something that you definitely do not want to miss!
Karen Piddington – Karen’s practice is concerned with magnifying and manipulating the awkward conjunctions and contradictions of 21st century living, often involving people and animals. Similarities are exaggerated and juxtaposed to create a paradoxical scene. She uses ambiguity, absurdity and humour to test boundaries and to question ways in which we relate to other species and to re-present definitions of humanness. Her work is not necessarily about animals – instead she uses them as a prism through which to look a humanness. Employing both a playful and a serious intent, her aim is to sweep the viewer off into the unfamiliar. www.karenpiddington.co.uk
Keith Newlove – Produced during the #Artmonkey72 project this series of sculpture depicts the “birth” of a human limb from a pod like object. This series marks the beginning of body of work examining the trials of life. The sculpture becomes part of a larger installation and the narrative follows the hand through various environments and obstacles. The hand must find its way out to the next stage of life and will go through transformations along the way. www.keithnewlove1.wix.com/keith-newlove
Lilas Bizrah – Lilas is an Interior Architect graduate from the University of Westminster, and currently doing an MSc at UCL. For her, art is the gift she always turns to for comfort – the only place in the world she feels she can freely express myself. Experimenting with diverse media and styles is her passion, and she always strives to be flexible and open to new ideas and types of art.The pieces she has chosen were created over a few years, some pieces embracing a relaxed style while others are much more detailed. She believes every artist seeks an identity through art. Every piece is a glimpse into the mind and heart of the artist.
Marina Ard – Marina’s work revolves around notions of storytelling, memories, heritage and movements. She employs printmaking to translate her thoughts into pieces of art as she has always been captivated by printmaking’s traditions, methodologies and function in contemporary art. Marina uses her prints and paintings to portray the affiliation between movement of time, memory and object; how they fade with time and how we constantly rebuild and append novel segments to each tale narrated to us. As a consequence, with the passage of time our memories tend to enhance, develop new meaning and become more magnetic and mesmerising. Marina Ard have endeavoured to depict these changes since life goes on… Website: www.marinaard.com
Mario Gonzalez Jr – Born 1970 and raised in the city of Chicago. Graffiti Writer “ZORE” Mario Gonzalez Jr. At the age of 17, Mario received a full scholarship to attend the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. He has utilized various art forms and genres to create, destruct and push himself not only in the Graffiti and Fine Art but in life itself. Mario fuses all the elements that he had experienced over the years such as pouring, dripping, drawing and using non-traditional techniques and processes. These new approach culminated into a style of urban abstract graffiti and expressionism that is now highly acclaimed by local and international galleries and museums. www.33contemporary.com / www.zbcenter.org
Nadia Mowafy – Nadia Mowafy is a London based performing artist, costume engineer and a theatre creator. This work explores the idea of the unknown and the fantastical. Costumes are made by Nadia and photographed by Henry William Woide Godfrey and Sarah White. firstname.lastname@example.org
Henry William Woide Godfrey – Henry William Woide Godfrey (photographer): A commercial West London based photographer whom studied at the London School of Photography, now pursuing a career in studio, advertorial & dance photography, working with like minded individuals in his industry. www.woideangle.com
Sarah White – Sarah is a multi-disciplinary artist based in London exploring cross- discipline practice between dance and visual art, she also works as a photographer specialising in dance and performance photography, under Jolt Photography www.sarahadams.org.uk
Petronilla Hohenwarter – Petronilla wanted to use her art to explore the SOMETHING that she could not see; to reflect it, make it visual, quite simply to reveal it. This SOMETHING has many definitions throughout the world: strength, energy, basic trust, love, power, God, and it is at the heart of us all, irrespective of the religion, philosophy, continent and culture in which we feel at home. With this in mind, she wanted to thank all those people who have accompanied, moved, formed, shaped, encouraged and supported her, each in their own individual way. www.petronillahohenwarter.com
Robert Marcus Klump – Robert is a photographer. His photographic style can probably be best described as “experimental”. By that he means on the one hand the use of analogue effect films – like infrared or “Revolog” -, on the other hand the development process – especially “cross-processing” – as well as the use of (colour) filters. In addition he applies photographic techniques which he considers unusual and that he partly invents myself such as “fotocubism” and “organic random photography” (or “images of the subconscious”). http://artspace191.com
So see you guys all tomorrow and remember, SPREAD THE WORD!
What a beautiful day! I had to say it just because the opportunity to do so is always so rare. I hope you guys all got a chance to get out and feel the sun for a few seconds.
So yesterday Longlong went to a workshop near Angel called ‘Start-Up Loans Introduction.’ This largely involved sitting around a large table with other representatives from start-up companies and sharing questions and answers about applying for loans. Stuart, a business advisor from Start-Up Direct was one of the main speakers at the event and it was fascinating to listen to him talking about the importance of start-ups in society.
Today was also the final day we are accepting payments for participation in the ‘artFix Experience.’ So, as you can imagine, the majority of the morning was spent on processing these and adding the names to our lists.
Several of our artists have come from Debut Contemporary, an art industry incubator and professional development business as well as an art gallery in Notting Hill founded by Samir Ceric. Samir is a good friend of the artFix London and has supported our project from the beginning. And the work by artists who feature in the gallery is A-M-A-Z-I-N-G. The use of colour, shape and form in each of the pieces is really inspirational – exactly the kind of work that artFix is looking for.
Artists who are due to feature in the ‘artFix Experience’ are:
Next week be sure to look out for our artFix sweets, flyers and maybe even a surprise performance or two on Oxford Street as the final week before our first event kicks off. Your support so far has been really great. The number of positive e-mails and phone calls we have had about how much people support and appreciate our concept and wish us luck for the future has been overwhelming and given us great confidence in our work.
So don’t stop now! Make sure you come and see the results of all of this hard work on Friday 28th February between 6-8pm. If you can’t stay long it is a great opportunity to experience a 15-minute live performance by talented performers and view a variety of visual artwork – because that’s the point of artFix: to make art more accessible and affordable for the public.
Good evening fellow art-lovers! So today Joseph was telephoning potential sponsorship companies so the phone was constantly in use and constantly ringing. Meanwhile Sophie, Jilke and I spent a lot of time dealing with artist enquiries and sending e-mails. Longlong, however, left the office early today to go to a workshop event nearby – there will be more about that tomorrow.
A lot of our time has been steered towards the event next week of course – Sophie designed a timetable which divides all our responsibilities so that we can work quickly and know exactly what everyone else is doing – because it will definitely get very busy next week.
We’re all really enjoying the work of all the artists who have applied to participate in the evening – your work is really fantastic Remember that tomorrow is the last day for payment!
So today your blogger has been taken ill and did not go into the office. As a result this entry will generally be a short translation of what I have heard on the ‘office vine.’
George’s meeting with Michelle Wright from Cause4 was really successful. As well as finding artFix a really interesting project, she said that she is willing to help us fulfil our objectives, which is great news. We expect to hear more news from her soon.
The rest of the team have also been busy continuing discussion with artists and with each other. The design of the space being used to host the ‘artFix Experience’ is coming together which is good news especially as more artists are signing up to take part. Remember to get your applications in! Read more on the ‘Calling All Artists!’ tab above – Monday is the deadline!
So today has been a great day for progress which means that the team can go home happy – just in time for the weekend.
Longlong has been working on applications to True Start and the Big Venture Challenge, both of which help start-up companies in the retail business sector, like artFix to develop faster. If we succeed to the final stage then they will not only provide us with funding but also space and mentoring which will allow us to develop a complex and accurate financial strategy for our venture, which would be fantastic! Wish us luck!
On the other side of the office Jilke and Sophie are continuing their work to get more artists on board. In addition to receiving a lot of positive feedback from artists they also have a lot of meetings scheduled in the next week so the office is looking to get very busy! I had a conversation with them this morning about how they were doing and they were really excited by the energy in some of your replies. Sophie said that she really liked it when artists said that the concept of artFix is something which is really needed in society.
Sam also arrived at the office today and met with George to discuss the need for projectors at the ‘artFix Experience.’ He is going to help us to locate projectors and install the pop-up and is also thinking of inviting some friends who are video-artists, to the event on the 27th. They will not only be able to film the event in its entirety but also individual artists which is great for you who are participating. So things are looking very good for the end of February.
Finally for today, Ingrid came over to discuss the technical design of the event space with George, Jilke and Sophie. From exhibition areas to drinks at the bar, they bounced around lots of ideas – a very good meeting and a nice way to close the day.
So we took the metaphorical form of busy bees in the office today. With the ‘artFix Experience’ just around the corner on the 27th to the 28th February, the pressure is on to develop videos and engage the interests of artists and the public – we knew we all had a long day ahead. As a result, it was great to come in to the office and discover that George had developed the final edited version of the Outtake Video from the filming we did on the 24th of January! Needless to say, it was a pleasant way to start the morning – laughter and coffee will always be the best combination.
So sit back, relax and enjoy watching the team work – and mess up.
So, artFix gossip of the day – Longlong and Zafeirenia discovered that they go to the same gym as David Beckham (!) which I must say is an added incentive for me to re-start that New Year’s resolution.
Having spent most of Saturday at the UCL Student Enterprise Hub event, however, Longlong needed some time to relax, with or without the presence of David Beckham. The busy one-day event hosted several pitches and discussions held by eminent business individuals in the morning and two interactive workshops in the afternoon. Particularly, the Finance workshop proved to present some useful information on important tools which we will definitely be looking to implement in our own business plan.
This morning, the team were continuing our good work on engaging the interests of artists and investors by meeting up with a representative from London Fusion. George, Sophie and Jilke met with Vanesa Sánchez to discuss further funding opportunities to boost the development of the artFix venture. As part of this, Vanesa has promoted the artFix blog to the London Fusion website so now I am probably also speaking to some of you who have arrived here along this alternative route! If so then hi – welcome to artFix.
So discussion is continuing and we are constantly reaching out to widen our circle and develop our network via business events, meetings with individuals and even by bumping into the odd celebrity, which is great.
With only a few members of the team in the office, today was a relatively quiet day, although that did not stop us from continuing our aim to send new rhythms through the art world.
This week has been a good one to engage the interests of new artists and investors at a variety of events. Not only have they been interested in what artFix is currently doing but also our plans for the future which is great! The mock pop-up store in February is an event which is capturing particular interest.
As a result, we have come up with a plan to send out a monthly newsletter to all our lovely subscribers. So if you are reading this blog and thinking, I am really interested to get to know more about what these guys are doing, then please add your name to the list via our website or contact me via the address below. The newsletter will be a fantastic way to keep up to date with our current and future plans but also the latest news about artFix’s position in the art and business world – something which is becoming increasingly important as it is more widely recognised.
We are also getting our creative hats on and working on the initial stages of scripting for videos to be screened at our first store. Cameraman, Sam, from Gro-up arrived to discuss our general concept so now it’s all about building this up into something special.
Have a brilliant art-filled weekend and speak to you all on Monday!