As you wander around Soho in London, you see groups of art explorers, and even the occasional gallerist, walking purposefully, with maps in hands, exploring dark, dirty, unknown corners of the city.
It’s that time of year when 36 international art galleries are invited to co-habit in a variety of 17 gallery spaces across London in the Condo London initiative, which has also taken place across the world in Sao Paolo, Mexico City, Shanghai, Athens and New York and has become one of London’s most popular art initiatives, bringing visitors to galleries in parts of London that they might not otherwise visit, brining new and experimental artists and overlapping with the London Art Fair in Islington. If you google Condo, you will pull up dozens of websites about renting condominiums in all sorts of places – and that is the background to this art initiative.
First, through a narrow metal gateway, down a dark alley and up a steel staircase to Arcadia Missa adjacent to an ‘interesting’ nude photography studio, hosting Lomex from New York, with the two galleries showing work by Hamishi Farah and Julian Caguiat on the walls around an installation by Danica Barboza then, a few streets away, down a mews, partially rebuilt, to Southard Reid hosting Oktem Aykut from Istanbul showing work by three very different artists – Ahmet Clvelek’s work where sandpaper is transformed almost into fabric, Mert Oztekin’s surrealistic and deep-thinking portraits and R M Fisher’s robotic, art deco ‘Navigator’.
Only another 15 galleries to go!