Seeing is believing. Thinking. Feeling. Art today is an intriguing spectrum of intellect, imagination, and emotion that sparks dialogues about life, existence, and our world. It is essentially a human experience.

ARTisFAIR is fashioned on this very premise, to challenge perceptions about art, while creating a new kind of appreciation and ownership. This biggest hybrid art fair in Malaysia aims to build a sustainable ecosystem of art and community within a real global marketplace.

Opening on November 11 to 28 at Fahrenheit88, ARTisFAIR showcases the voices, ideas, and colours of over 500 artists from Malaysia and Indonesia. The creative realm spans over 2,000 artworks, from paintings to sculptures and unique installations, in over 100,000 square feet of gallery space. The mission: to connect emerging and established artists with emerging collectors, across four levels of exciting, welcoming areas, to spark art appreciation from ground level. Because everyone deserves to have good art in their lives.

“This immersive art event was born out of a desire to champion creativity and make art accessible to a wider, appreciative audience,” says Andrew Yap, co-creator of ARTisFAIR, who brings his experience in running the World’s Biggest Book Sale, Big Bad Wolf Books, and 14 BookXcess bookstores, to this artistic venture. “By transforming this massive mall space into the largest art exhibition in the region, we’re inviting people of all walks of life to view the brilliance of contemporary art, while giving them the chance to actually own a piece.”

Produced by “art outliers” who bring a very different dialogue to the experience, it’s all about “trying to do something different,” says Andrew. Here, artists, emerging artists, the art and event public, interior buyers, and art collectors converge to create a spectacularly new dynamic—away from conventional art presentations. Taking it to tech, anyone can buy the artwork offline or online, with the website www.artisfairkl.com designed specifically for browsing and shopping.

“Never in my wildest dreams,” says Dato’ Sri Bernard Chandran, co-creator of ARTisFAIR, on branching out from high fashion to contemporary art. And yet, this has been his personal evolution, from pinning up Japanese airbrush art in his teenage years to being a serious collector of Southeast Asian contemporary works today. “In our ‘new world’ per se, the dimension of contemporary art needs to be presented outside the gallery, in a more dynamic and lively way for people to interact with it, understand its relevance, and ultimately think that it’s cool.”

Dato’ Sri Bernard took on the job of curating the artwork, using the “French way of presenting” by mixing high with low to exude personality. “I took on everything as an artform by using the original crates and boxes to frame the art and mounting them on industrial broken walls, with plywood and hoarding. It’s raw, cool, and beautiful. It’s a big space but with a real thought process and spirit of innovation.”

“At the same time, we are so thankful to Fahrenheit88 for offering us the entire mall to showcase ARTisFAIR, and the artworks, almost carte blanche in terms of real estate,” adds Dato’ Sri Bernard. “It’s really not possible without Dato’ Joyce Yap and her team’s open and genuine support.”

It was a Saturday afternoon in April, deep in the pandemic, when both men met Nicholas Siau of PAPU—Pop Art Pop-Up – in a suburban mall in Kuala Lumpur, and called him on board as a key collaborator. “Nicholas had a small but well-curated collection of emerging and established Malaysian artists, and also opened up his space to incubate interest in art with classes and talks,” Andrew shares. “We immediately wanted to explore how we could support him and especially broaden the horizons of contemporary Malaysian artists.”

“Before I owned PAPU, I curated a show called LIMBO–‘neither here nor there’–and the concept was anonymous artwork by a wide range of artists, big or small; no size constraints, not limited by subject matter,” says Nicholas on his 2016 foray into “experimental” art fairs. “I wanted people to buy art because they wanted it, not for any other reason, only because they liked it.” The energy he brings as a young art lover, curator, dealer, and even rapper as Nemo on the 2017 album ‘Not Rich Enough To Buy The Scene, Not Poor Enough For A Sob Story’], throws a new spin to the staid art scene.

This dynamic and diverse partnership brings about a significant change in societal evolution. “The end game is to make Malaysia beautiful,” says Andrew. “When people are creative, everything will be.” Chiming in with his imaginative mind and taste for “youth”, Dato’ Sri Bernard simply states: “Expect the unexpected.”

For more information about ARTisFAIR, please visit:

Website: www.artisfairkl.com  Facebook: @artisfair.kl Instagram: @artisfair_kl

Twitter: @artisfair_kl Pinterest: @artisfair_kl YouTube: artisfairkl

#artisfairKL #aifKL

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