URVANITY has done it again. The fourth edition of the New Contemporary Art Fair has been a success. Between February 27 and March 1, thirty galleries and ninety graffiti artists, the lowbrow or neopop - more than half international - exhibited their work at the Official College of Architects of Madrid-COAM (Hortaleza, 63).
And also, in the streets of the Spanish capital, because as usual, there were interventions of walls, installations in different places and, for the first time, digital art projected on urban furniture.
The city of Madrid was the main protagonist of this event, which increasingly aims to be open to all citizens. Because if in ARCO you cannot approach the Kings or the great authors ... in URVANITY the artists mix with the public and nobody is more than anyone, but people who share a beer while enjoying the more street art, which most resembles us, most mortals who populate the earth.
Thus, at the opening party we saw important contemporary creators such as Amparito, Okuda San Miguel, Miss Van ... and it is even rumored that Bansky himself was there , of which the Swiss gallery Artrust had a screen-print of his famous “Girl with ballon."
Thanks to the support of the Mahou beer brand, this year the Muros program bequeathed to the city monumental works by leading artists, such as the Swiss duo NEVERCREW (Chueca), the Madrid GVIIIE (Latina), the Argentine EVER (Nicolás Fonseca) and the French Zest (both in Ambassadors).
With Madrid Capital de Moda as a partner, site-specific installations of the Croatian Dunja Jankovic (San Ildefonso Square) and Abel Iglesias (Callao Square) were launched; a sculpture by Samuel Salcedo at the intersection of Plaza de Juan Goytisolo, in front of the Reina Sofía Museum. Also, the Canadian Laurence Vallières stormed the courtyard of COAM with one of her cardboard sculptures, in which a hungry Mickey Mouse devoured a dinosaur...
URVANITY claims the value of artistic expressions that emerged in urban contexts from the 70s onwards, such as post-graffiti, surrealist pop or new pop art. In that sense, the work of great masters such as Jan Kaláb, Vinz, Grip Face, Samuel Salcedo, Obey or D * Face has been seen again live.
The increase in galleries of this edition and the presence of important national and international artists consolidates the Madrid fair as one of the most important of its kind, both inside and outside Spain.
In the international presence, Le Feuvre & Roze (France), MAGMA and Antonio Colombo (Italy), PADRE Gallery (United States) and Pantocrator Gallery (China) stood out. While the nationals did not miss the Barcelona 3 Punts Gallery, Madrid's Swinton Gallery and Yusto / Giner.
In Le Feuvre & Roze it was amazing to see pieces by INVADER, an artist who has installations all over the world, and who we like to look for wherever we go, be it Malaga or Miami. While in Pantocrator Gallery, which is also based in Barcelona, we try to take a bite out of the burger of Juan Miguel Quiñones, author of the famous Dracula polo shirts that every year are the delight of the most nostalgic collectors.
The fair has also opened a new curated section (Young Galleries), with some of the most interesting emerging galleries on the current scene, and has brought new artists that we should not lose sight of, such as Alessia Inocenti (BienCuadrado, Barcelona) or ILK (Happy Gallery, Paris).
Although several American galleries come every year, mainly from the mecca of urban art (New York), the absence here of Latin American spaces is too evident. Only Casa Cuadrada (Bogotá / Zurich) and HEARTBEATS (Mexico City) participated in this edition, the latter with works by José Luis Serzo, Horacio Quiroz and Abraham Jiménez (his canvas “El ensueño”, was perhaps one of the best pieces exhibited at the fair).
The muralist and graphic designer Queen Andrea also arrived from New York, who completely transformed the Mahou Space, where debates on the new currents and languages of the so-called New Contemporary Art took place. The challenges facing the galleries of the 21st century, art as a tool to denounce climate change and the emergence of digital and audiovisual art in urban art were some of the topics that focused on the URVANITY Mahou Talks conference.
Fashion was also present at the event with two very interesting projects, curated by URVANITY. In the first, the Canadian artist Ryan Heshka has collaborated with the urban clothing firm Tiwel to create his first capsule collection. The garments, which could be acquired during the fair, collect fantastic characters inspired by pop surrealism.
With the second, Adidas Originals and Foot District celebrate the 50th anniversary of the legendary Superstar shoes, bringing a special edition colored by the Catalan graffiti artist GR170. Curated by URVANITY and BMurals, the brand is also developing in Barcelona a project of artistic residences to influence and support local communities through art.
In 2019, Caleido, one of the most important real estate spaces in Madrid, has joined Urvantiy Projects to contribute to the creation of a space with unique experiences, which works all year as the epicenter of urban art in the city. In his space at COAM, Caleido showed the second project in which both collaborate: Silent shapes, by Filippo Minelli; in it, the Italian entered the bowels of the building, still under construction, to photograph his "bombs" of colored smoke.
Captained by Sergio Sancho from Madrid, and with Arte por Excelencias as Media Partner since its first edition, Urvanity covers a space that had been left empty during the Madrid Art Week: giving visibility to artists who had started on the streets and had no place in the traditional circuit fairs. Something that, in our opinion, makes each year better.