Amelia’s Magazine | Art Car Boot Fair 2013 Review

art car boot fair review
This year’s Art Car Boot Fair was noticeably busier than the previous ones I have attended, despite the drabness of the day. A tipping point has been reached, and it’s unique charms are now reaching a wider crowd beyond the trendy Shoreditch regulars. Whilst this can only be a good thing for the artists (some of whom are not as well known or rich as Peter Blake) it made for a far less pleasant experience. Particularly with a little one in tow: the car park behind the Truman Brewery is not a good place to hang out with children. This meant my visit was fairly fast, then straight across Allen Gardens to the far more relaxed environs of Spitalfields City Farm, which hosts the Eco-Chic Outdoor Market every Sunday through summer. Of course I hung out long enough to make a few purchases and take copious photos… here’s what I saw.

An amazing outfit & floral headdress at the #artcarbootfair
Lots of people make an effort to be outrageous: how about this dashing cartoon character made real (above) or an amazing floral headdress to make an impact on the crowd?

gavin turk
Peter Blake had already packed up and gone home by the time we arrived shortly after lunch. Sadly (maybe?) I don’t think fellow famous artist Gavin Turk sold too many balloons. An Avante Garde step too far perhaps?

chris balls
Chris’ Balls made a delightful pattern laid out on a rug.

boo saville
Portraits by Boo Saville swung artfully in the breeze.

cliff pearcey
cliff pearcey
One of my favourite stalls every year is that of Cliff Pearcey, who has a real eye for creating up cycled products out of old tat. Above you can see Snarfle surveying my piece, Booking (Geddit?) I loves it.

The Whitechapel Gallery were trying to persuade people to slap the jelly arse at #artcarbootfair
The Whitechapel Gallery were trying to persuade people to slap the jelly arse by artist Justine Pearsall, and I must say it did have a rather fabulous wobble.

Felt Beatles by John Gathercole
Felt Beatles by John Gathercole got the thumbs up from craft lovers on my instagram feed.

pure evil
Pure Evil did ridiculous business, with a queue snaking around half the market thanks to his appearance in The Apprentice and subsequent fame.

sock monster
Not sure who created these bizarre sock monsters, maybe good for a doorstop?!

Bespoke collage pizza art at keelertornero
Bespoke collages on vintage vinyl at the PIZZARTERIA by artists KEELERTORNERO.

Ace silk scarf by Mark Titchner. Feel Good Now
I love this ace silk scarf by Mark Titchner. Feel Good Now: fine sentiments.

Spooky girls embroidered artwork by the Binnie Sisters
The Binnie Sisters were in residence inside a gazebo hung with their artwork, including this spooky girls embroidered portrait of two girls. Out front a painted car was for sale ‘contents included‘ – those contents including an old television heavily encrusted with paint. I’ve been trying to find out more about these intriguing artists, who together with Wilma Johnson were founders of the Neo-Naturist body painting cabaret in the early 80s.

Ladies by Wilma Johnson, #neonaturist #surfmama
Wilma herself had travelled over from her home in France to take part: I love her loose style of painting in black ink, then colouring in with bright colours… so much so that I commissioned her to draw our family portrait for a mere £20. Wilma Johnson is another fascinating character, having left Ireland with her three children to pursue her dream of learning how to surf when she was well past the age of 40. Her biography, Surf Mama (published by Beautiful Books), has received unanimously glowing reviews on amazon and I’d love to read it, once I find the time.

Wilma Johnson the Surf Mama
wilma johnson family portrait
I wonder what next year will bring… in the meantime find the Art Car Boot Fair at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park on 27-28th July.

Categories ,Allen Gardens, ,Art Car Boot Fair, ,Beautiful Books, ,Boo Saville, ,Chris Balls, ,Cliff Pearcey, ,Eco-Chic Outdoor Market, ,Felt Beatles, ,Gavin Turk, ,John Gathercole, ,Justine Pearsall, ,Keeler & Tornero, ,KEELERTORNERO, ,Mark Titchner, ,Neo-Naturist, ,Peter Blake, ,Pure Evil, ,shoreditch, ,Spitalfields City Farm, ,Surf Mama, ,The Apprentice, ,The Binnie Sisters, ,Truman Brewery, ,Whitechapel Gallery, ,Wilma Johnson

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Amelia’s Magazine | Art Car Boot Fair Review 2014

Art Car Boot Fair queue

The Art Car Boot Fair is a great leveller… a place where the big names on the British contemporary art scene share a packed car park with many more up and coming artists. And packed it certainly was this year, making this a less than ideal place to hang out with a tired toddler (yes, people really did sleep outside in order to secure a place in the queue). So I swept round with great speed, and as usual discovered that the lesser known artists were producing some of the most inspiring work. Here’s a round up of the stuff I liked best.

David Fenwick art car boot fair

This stand was manned by two young chaps in very dapper threads, artist David Fenwick and his cohort Damian Chandler. When I tried to find out more I was given short shrift and sent away with an information sheet that explained they would only sell paintings “if DD Gallery deem you fit for acquisition”. I suspect I would not have passed muster. This is exactly what you expect at the Art Car Boot Fair – a good dose of arrogance combined with humour – it’s not an atmosphere everyone will feel comfortable in.

Joseph Gibson art car boot fair

Next door artist, printmaker, carpenter and photographer Joseph Gibson was selling stacked and tied blocks of wood. There’s one innovative way of dealing with offcuts.

Art Car Boot Fair Pam Hogg

Along the way Pam Hogg was once more holding court.

Bob and Roberta Smith art car boot fair

The Instant Van Gogh, art car boot fair

Bob and Roberta Smith had a large placard atop his vehicle, all the better to flog his numerous typographic works. He was later discovered swapping artwork with a slightly dishevelled Instant Van Gogh.

Surf Mama matchboxes art car boot fair

Wilma Johnson surf mama book signing

It was good to see Wilma Johnson back for a second year and I am excited to read the paperback version of Surf Mama, published last week. Here she is signing my book… just look at the tassels, the hair, the jewels… and what a story, I’ve already started reading it.

Renegade Craft art car boot fair

I always love the curious characters on plates by Carrie Reichardt, renegade potter. Upcycling with a great sense of humour!

Matt Brown art car boot fair

Super smiley faces by Matt Brown display a slightly sinister air up close.

Art car boot fair prints

Icons of the silver screen: prints by Marty Thornton hanging off a van.

Chadwick sculpture art car boot fair

This neon kinetic mobile was blowing merrily in the breeze. It was created by the eccentric chap behind the Chadwick Oven, for making pizzas.

Art Car Boot Fair 2014-James Unsworth

James Unsworth had created a stand designed to emulate his web page and promote his Ninja Turtle Sex Museum series, and some rather fabulous Tiki ceramic skull mugs.

Cultural Product 1, Frances Richardson, Art car boot fair

I made a special trip back to the fair later in the day to ensure I got a good photo of Cultural Product 1 by Frances Richardson (my iphone is close to death and many of my first batch did not come out). This ceramics series was inspired by heritage tomatoes and each has a different tactile quality.

Disastronaut, Herrick Gallery, art car boot fair

I loved these upcycled flower paintings which have acquired enigmatic faces thanks to DJ/designer/artist Disastronaut, aka Jeffrey Louis-Reed, showing with the Herrick Gallery.

Cliff Pearcey Ukipper

This year Cliff Pearcey was inspired by the sea, producing a host of whimsical boats and fish from reclaimed wood and other oddments. We could not resist a couple of fish and acquired a UKipper fridge magnet too.

Theatre Of Dolls, art car boot fair

On my return I found these oddly wonderful prints by Theatre Of Dolls, a creative partnership between performance artists Frida Alvinzi and Raisa Veikkola.

Silvia Ziranek necklace, art car boot fair

I discovered these literal baubles by Silvia Ziranek just as the fair was closing. A colourful accessory from a colourful artist who has collaborated with Tatty Devine.

I must confess that I am hooked… and really hoping to catch the Folkestone edition of the Art Car Boot Fair, coming up on the 30th of August.

Categories ,2014, ,Art Car Boot Fair, ,Bob and Roberta Smith, ,Brick Lane, ,Carrie Reichardt, ,Chadwick Oven, ,Cliff Pearcey, ,Cultural Product 1, ,Damian Chandler, ,David Fenwick, ,DD Gallery, ,Disastronaut, ,Folkestone, ,Frances Richardson, ,Frida Alvinzi, ,Herrick Gallery, ,Instant Van Gogh, ,James Unsworth, ,Jeffrey Louis-Reed, ,Joseph Gibson, ,Marty, ,Marty Thornton, ,Matt Brown, ,Ninja Turtle Sex Museum, ,Pam Hogg, ,Raisa Veikkola, ,review, ,Silvia Ziranek, ,Surf Mama, ,Theatre Of Dolls, ,Truman Brewery, ,UKipper, ,Wilma Johnson

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