The organiser of Art London on Chelsea has cancelled the contemporary arts exhibition due to ongoing issues with the local council.
The event was due to be held from 4 to 8 October at the Royal Hospital Chelsea and has been running annually since 1999. In a statement, Art London founder and chairman Ralph Ward-Jackson said the fair had experienced longstanding issues with the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea going back to 2003.
The final straw was the local council’s decision not to renew the fair’s tenancy agreement after 2012. According to the organiser, its inability to secure a long-term location made Art London’s commercial position unmaintainable.
At its last outing from 6 to 10 October, Art London attracted 15,300 visitors and over 70 galleries, with several curating solo exhibitions alongside stands. The event also featured a sculpture garden and live performance art.
VIP attendees last year included Sir Peter Blake, Tamara Beckwith, Gillian Anderson, Sol Campbell, Sadie Frost and Paul Whitehouse, while galleries participating for the first time included Constantine Lindsay, Gray Modern and Contemporary Art, HUS London, Hay Hill, Vernissage London, Jenna Burlingham Fine Art and Art Med.
“When I launched Art London in 1999, it was a small fair with a mere 28 exhibitors, and we took it to over 90, many of them international,” Ward-Jackson said.
“We are proud of the fair’s achievements and of its contribution to the vibrant London art scene.”
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