Unfortunately we don't currently support Internet Explorer. Please upgrade to Microsoft Edge, Google Chrome or Safari
It might not have been London Fashion Week (LFW), but that fact was very much a source of appeal for certain fashion watchers who kept a close eye on the recent Frieze Art Fair.
Also referred to as simply “Frieze London”, the once-a-year event first took place in 2003, the brainchild of Frieze magazine co-founders Amanda Sharp and Matthew Slotover. The art show continues to be held each October in London’s Regent’s Park, where it ran once again this year from the 11th until the 15th.
It has been increasingly noted, however, that while Frieze London focuses exclusively on contemporary art and living artists as its “stock in trade”, there has also been no shortage of sartorial artistry turning heads at the event.
The relatively understated aesthetics at Frieze are winning admirers
One observer summing up much of the positive response to the style of Frieze participants and attendees was The Telegraph’s fashion editor, Tamara Abraham, who declared that – even when merely lingering “around the entrance for a few minutes” – it was clear that the fair “makes for such brilliant people watching.”
Characterising the vibe as “creative intellectual”, she said there was “a greater degree of sartorial spontaneity among the Frieze crowd [than LFW]. They’re not trying too hard, which is the nail in the coffin when it comes to carrying off a look.”
Also quoted in The Telegraph’s piece was photographer Noorunisa, who has previously covered both Frieze London and London Fashion Week, but could not bring herself to declare a preference for one over the other.
She did observe, though, that the aesthetic differed between the two events, stating: “I think the people that attend Frieze are definitely stylish, but it’s more understated and a lot more wearable looks – which I love, but makes less of a statement.”
What were some of the distinctive aesthetics on show at the fair?
“Three distinct tribes of people” were picked out by Abraham, distinguishable by their respective styles. These included “Serious Collectors”, whose wardrobes tended towards “quiet-ish luxury” items such as shirts, fine knits, and relatively casual and muted tailoring, albeit with their Hermes bags and Cartier watches also giving their status away.
The gallerists present, meanwhile, were “more inclined to wear bold colour than busy prints, and their shoes are almost universally flat – loafers, Mary-Janes, Adidas Sambas, because they’re on their feet all day.”
All of that leaves the artists themselves, who as Abraham put it, “really don’t care what you think of their clothes, they’re dressing for themselves… [but] they’re still pretty cool”. She cited such examples in this group as Marc Quinn in his Palm Angels tracksuit, and designer Zeena Shah, who had donned a pink Clueless-esque skirt suit, as well as Zack Mclaughlin, who went for a white tee and dark green shacket.
As both The Telegraph and Wallpaper noted, the associations between Frieze London and the capital’s fashion world seem to be gaining in seriousness and prominence – and given the sheer stylishness of the guests, it isn’t difficult to understand why. There is much overlap in their respective target audiences, too, which has helped to attract involvement from such brands as Alexander McQueen, Stone Island, and Dunhill, the latter sponsoring a series of Frieze Masters talks.
Many a forward-thinking luxury digital marketing consultancy, then, is sure to keep its eye on the latest happenings at Frieze London, extending well beyond the art on the walls. Here at Skywire London, we very much look forward to observing the continued conversations between the art and fashion spheres in the capital.
To find out more about how your own lifestyle, luxury, or fashion brand’s growth could be supported by some of the most capable strategic and digital professionals in the city, please don’t hesitate to reach out to the Skywire London team today.
Stay informed on fashion, luxury ecommerce