Fresh fruits

London’s Business Design Centre is hosting Fresh Art, a selling exhibition of work from emerging UK artists. Pamela Buxton paid a visit

Daniel Brooke spent an entire week constructing a ‘cave’ out of minced beef and lamb chops and photographing it for his artwork Domain # 10. The lights made the meat go brown, and the smell was terrible, but he persevered and the result – one of a series of 12 food-based pieces – can be seen at the inaugural Fresh Art selling exhibition which takes place in London’s Islington this weekend.

Brooke is one of more than 100 artists who made the one-in-four selection cut to exhibit at the new show, which is dedicated to showcasing emerging artists and also includes work by recent graduates from 28 colleges of art. ‘We’re not taking any artists who’re represented by a gallery, but are concentrating on those who are just starting to make their way in the art world,’ says fair director Lucy Field, adding that Fresh Art will give visitors the chance to not only buy potential future classics but also to meet the artists, who will be present at the three-day event.

Exhibitors range across the art disciplines from sculpture to photography. For many of them such as painter Pilar Enrich, it’s their first chance to show to such a broad audience. London-based Enrich uses her work to explore her ambiguous feelings towards customs in her native Mexico such as cockfights and all-in wrestling. At Fresh Art, she will be exhibiting a series of eight bull-fighting scenes in vibrant acrylic and charcoal including one, The Bull is Spared, where the vibrant red-and-black images are punctuated with a splash of white to indicate the white handkerchief that reprieves a particularly impressive bull.

‘I have a duality. I still think it’s very beautiful, but rationally I am against it,’ says Enrich. ‘I still have several questions unanswered about bullfighting and until I solve these questions I will carry on,’ she adds.

While Enrich’s work is relatively easy to grasp, visitors to the show will have plenty more off-the-wall concepts to tackle. These include the work of Henry Bird, a mature student at Central St Martins, who will be showing a resin prototype of his 3m x 2m computer-modelled aluminium piece A Secret Career in Counter-Espionage. Inspired by the form of deep- sea organisms, it has a ‘sense of intimacy and freedom’ that, Bird hopes, is an antidote to the art world’s approach to the conceptual. ‘I want to provide something a bit more healthy and wholesome that’s dealing with experiences that are beyond the mind,’ he says.

Work by husband-and-wife team Zatorski & Zatorski is also sure to cause a stir. Sponsored by M&S for the show, the duo plan to present a fleet of old-fashioned prams, each standing in baby oil and containing a huge, erect phallus in a pool of milk. The installation, part of the artists’ exploration of issues of sexuality between mother and child, will be accompanied by work inspired by their current residency in a Gothic church. Highlights include the video The Last 3600 Seconds of a Wasp, where the pair captured the death throes of a dying wasp they came across in their church, filmed against a lurid floral plate.

Lighter relief comes in the form of Rebecca Scott’s vibrant red Bollock Bra, intended as a humorous response to the Wonder Bra. Prices at Fresh Art will range from an affordable £100 to a pricey £5000. But if you have a good eye it could be a wise investment – after all, today’s unknown hopeful could be the Turner Prize-winner of tomorrow.

Fresh Art runs from 27-29 July at Business Design Centre, 52 Upper Street, London N1. See www.freshartfair.co.uk for details

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