During October, Frieze brings the world’s most influential art buyers to London, and has spawned an entire week of art fairs, exhibitions and events. Throughout London, crowds will be taking part in celebrating contemporary art, and Moniker Art Fair is bringing bitcoin to the forefront.
Moniker is one of London’s premiere contemporary art events, and a haven for street artists. Last year the fair exhibited works from artists such as Shepard Fairey, who became known for the Barack Obama “Hope” poster which was widely used in the 2008 presidential campaign.
Moniker will be held from 15th to the 18th October, in East London’s iconic Old Truman Brewery. The event brings together a lineup of approximately 20 national and international art galleries, and shares the 21,000 sq foot space with London’s own artist-led, The Other Art Fair, and the Latin American artist collection, Pinta “in what will be a showcase of independent and established talent all under one roof.”
“This exciting spectacle will attract 14,000-plus visitors to the capital’s East End, forming one of the major satellite events of London’s Art Week when 60,000 visitors descend on the city to form an unparalleled international art audience.”
One of the main attractions at Moniker will be a 50ft interactive installation, which aims to promote and educate the wider public about the benefits of Bitcoin. “The Renaissance is Now” focuses on the concepts of decay and change, and includes original work by internationally recognised artist Ben Eine, hyperealist sculptural artist Schooney and Bitcoin afficianado Toonpunk.
“The space conveys how decentralised technologies such as Bitcoin can potentially offer society a future of hope and abundance and a real alternative to the current Fiat system.”
For this year’s fair, Moniker has also teamed up with global art, music and technology collective Fork The Banks, in an exciting venture to become the world’s first international art fair to accept Bitcoin payments. Discounts will be available online for bitcoiners.
“Over the last 6 years, Moniker Art Fair has helped forge a direct, unpretentious approach to appreciating and collecting art from a new generation of contemporary artists. With ‘Renaissance is Now,’ our goal is not only to produce a visually stunning installation, but to introduce Bitcoin and its benefits to the wider public.”
– Frankie Shea, Director of Moniker Projects
Fork The Banks (FTB) describes their collective as “The artists, computer scientists, musicians and activists who refuse to sit passively and accept the mainstream narrative, who dare to questions the status quo and imagine a world without fear, war, poverty or greed.” The group consists of 99 artists, 99 musicians and 1 currency; bitcoin.
The global music and art collective primarily operate in “stealth mode,” but recently unveiled the trailer for a new project at a Coinscrum meetup in London. According to the collective, founded in the heart of London, every movement in history has had its soundtrack or it’s own Michelangelo, and those that succeeded did so through art.
The video was well received in the bitcoin community. “What we perceive as money is part of our culture […], and it’s difficult to disrupt core values. It’s easy to overlook that as everyone strives to create Bitcoin’s killer app. Real social change will require more than greater utility. I’m looking forward to learning more about this project,” commented one redditor.
“As history has shown countless times before, when artists get behind an idea it’s not long before everyone else does,” states the group, and get behind the idea they have. The group is promoting bitcoin on twitter, facebook and soundcloud. The first release on their SoundCloud account, was a mix by Professor Bongo featuring Andreas Antonopoulos.
Their twitter account also highlights bitcoin graffiti, and street art blossoming in many corners of London. Roger Ver shared an example on his twitter account, “I Just spotted some bitcoin graffiti in the streets of London.”
The street art scene, according to many, was popularised in the UK by Bristol born artist Banksy. Many compare his pieces to that of Andy Warhol in regards to his impact on the contemporary art scene. His art has caused quite a stir in cities such as London and New York, with the underlying messages that are both satirical and political. Some of Banksy’s work will be on display, and available for purchase at the Moniker event.