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What’s affordable at Affordable Art Fair?


“Daddy, what is affordable?” asked Pangzi.

“Good question,” I reasoned. “These days nothing is really affordable.”


“I mean, what is the meaning of affordable?”

“Oh, that…”

The concept of money is not something that comes easily to a six-year-old. A perfect place to learn is the Affordable Art Fair where he could see for himself.


The Affordable Art Fair is a half-yearly event where who’s who in the contemporary art scene peddle their ware to buyers looking for something… affordable.

Affordable art supposedly goes for as low as $200, up to a maximum of $10,000. The premise is simple: put art within reach of the masses. It works apparently. The fair started in London and has gone international.


“Daddy, is this affordable art?” Pangzi wasted no time in finding out.

I looked at the price tag. At $10,000, this had to be the best art the fair was offering. Then again, I didn’t think I’d readily shell out that amount for this particular piece.

“Not really,” I concluded. “That’s not cheap to poor people.”


“Daddy, look… Lego!” He got visibly excited. “Is this affordable art?”

$10,000 again. For something I can put together myself with individual humanoids?

“Maybe there’s something cheaper upstairs. Remember, you can touch but try not to break anything.”

If you break something, you run. 


The second floor of the F1 Pit Building where the fair was held indeed offered more variety. I was impressed by the range of sellers the organiser managed to attract.

Some came from as far as New York, and post-event figures would later reveal that these artists did not go home empty-handed.


“Daddy, I like this cute chair. Affordable art?”

By now, I’d come to expect that pieces like this would command nothing short of $10,000. Whatever happened to the $200 ones as advertised?


It was beginning to dawn upon me that affordable art needed to be properly defined, at least for the affordable part. Yet we could agree that the art itself was awesome.

I was about to give up and go home when we finally came across something we could call affordable art.

This was what I bought at $20:


And this, the artist:


The Affordable Art Fair is ongoing this weekend till Apr 19, 2015.


We were here:



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