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The Best Art Fairs In London This October 2017

All the fun of the fairs: Frieze London might be one of the contemporary art world’s headline events, but it isn’t the only art fair worth visiting this month

1:54 Contemporary African Art Fair

The fifth London edition of this international art fair, named after the 54 countries of the African continent, comes to Somerset House this month. It features 42 galleries that specialise in contemporary African art (18 of which are based in Africa) as well as solo exhibitions by eight artists. The fair’s Moroccan founder Touria El Glaoui was named one of the 100 most powerful women in Africa by Forbes last year.

5-8 October, Somerset House, Strand, WC2R, 1-54.com

The Affordable Art Fair

The Affordable Art Fair at Battersea Evolution offers more entry-level pricing for aspiring collectors. Train your eye to spot emerging talent at the curated Recent Graduates’ Exhibition, or take one of the tours on offer. “An editioned work (preferably a low edition) by an established name might be an affordable route into an investment piece for the future,” says fair director Luci Noel.

19-22 October, Battersea Park, SW11, affordableartfair.com

Cultural Traffic

Cultural Traffic is one of the newer events on this month’s art calendar, but despite only being founded in 2016, it already hosts events in four international cities including Miami and London. The power of print in enacting social change is a recurrent theme at the fair, and its free-to-visit, one-day event gathers together independent and experimental publishers, artists and dealers of vintage books. Plus, it stages live readings and music-led performances. 

8 October, 347 Old Street, EC1V, culturaltraffic.com

Sunday Art Fair

This annual contemporary art fair is a platform for new and emerging galleries, and provides an opportunity for young artists to exhibit their work in both solo projects and curated group presentations. Sunday Art Fair prides itself on being at the forefront of discovering new talent, and 17 galleries will be exhibiting at the fair for the first time this year. Cities represented range from Warsaw and Bucharest to the more established art hubs of London and Paris.

5-8 October, Ambika P3, 35 Marylebone Road, NW1, sundayartfair.com

The Other Art Fair

Saatchi Art’s biannual fair presents 130 of the best emerging artists chosen by a committee of art industry experts to display and sell their work. Exhibitors include dance photographer Cody Choi; Claire Newman-Williams, who is best-known for her headshots of leading actors; and Alexander Korzer-Robinson, who creates collages using antiquarian books.

5-8 October, Old Truman Brewery, Brick Lane, E1, theotherartfair.com

PAD London

The art and design fair returns to Berkeley Square for the eleventh time this month, when 67 galleries will display artworks and design objects from both contemporary and historical periods, spanning categories from jewellery to furniture. Awards are presented for best contemporary design, best 20th century design and best stand. Take a break at the PAD London Restaurant and Ruinart Champagne Bar while you weigh up your purchases.

2-8 October, Berkeley Square, W1, pad-fairs.com