Tag Archives: pop-up cafe

Frieze Week: Zoo Art Fair

Zoo Art Fair has a new home in the East this year and really, it feels like it should have been there all along.  Zoo used to be at the Royal Academy and now even the more conventional buyers will have to hop on the 149 to the three disused buildings just behind Shoreditch High Street.

Zoo is the place to find emerging artists but there are some Hirsts and Gilbert and George pieces to keep the bigtime collectors happy. The atmosphere of is a lot more relaxed and inclusive than the Pavilion of Art & Design, which attracts a more well-heeled, conventional crowd. 

Damien Hirst jaws

This year, Zoo features 50 contemporary arts organisations from all over Europe, including London galleries such as Serpentine Gallery, White Cube, Other Criteria, Camden Arts Centre, Whitechapel Gallery.  There are three art zones comprising four main exhibitions, curated by FormContent, LUX, Studio Voltaire and Rob Tufnell.

Zoo art fair

LUX’s  Film As A Subversive Art is a project inspired by Amos Vogel’s 1974 book of the same name that continues the question of subversion in contemporary art and film.  It was developed by six students from the Curating Programme at Goldsmiths, with Ellen Cantor’s captivating Pinochet Porn showing on Friday.  It narrates the tragi-comic lives of five adults who grew up during Pinochet regime, including the charming trainwreck Paloma and her Six Husbands, and ends with the question: Is tragedy a choice?

Zoo art fair

Confetti covered the floor of Mariel Lopez Gallery (Berlin) booth, which was in fact a piece by Ruben Grillo called 20 Manifestos – famous manifestos shredded, scattered and stood upon.  Also, Ant Macari showed his work behind a giant wall cavity and used his trademark scrolls and symbols to communicate cultural and religious ideas. 

Ant Macari

After viewing the art, you can quaff some champagne at the elegant Champagne Perrier-Jouet Bar and of course, it wouldn’t be an east end trendy knees up with Bistrotheque and their pop-up restaurant.

Also, if you’re new to the treasures of the east, Zoo have printed a map of the best places to drink and break bread with emerging artists and the galleries where they hang out.


The only trouble with Zoo is the hefty ticket price at £15, with no student discount.  The poor, impoverished art school students there can barely afford to make any huge purchases, or even a can of coke at the cafe from what I heard, but they could well be the next generation of talent at Zoo.

Zoo Art Fair is on now until Monday 19 October. 3-10 Shoreditch High Street, London, E1 6PG.

Pop in to Soho’s new pop-up

The pop-up eating and drinking establishment is as ubiquitous as London’s other current obsession, the flash mob (is there anything they won’t ‘pay homage’ to in Liverpool St station with a camera rolling?), but are any of them worth the space they inhabit?

Bistrotheque founders Pablo Flack and David Waddington have been hosting arty guerilla dinners in disused buildings for years and in October, they’re taking over the Masonic Temple at Andaz for a 3 night ritualistic supper club – good luck booking a table!

But you know that a good thing has been spoiled when premium spirit brands try to get in on the act by errecting ‘ice bars’ in…ahem, already existing posh watering holes, signposted with oversized advertising – surely that’s cheating?!

Central Perk

So, cynics will probably pan the upcoming Central Perk replica coffee shop as the most grotesque of the lot, but unlike the masquerading ‘ice bars’, the new fleeting addition to Soho’s cappuccino scene doesn’t take itself too seriously and is shamelessly nostaglic and just on the right side of twee.

Sipping a coffee next to show memorabilia like Rachel’s wedding dress will not bring you any closer to your favourite Friends characters and it will no doubt be so packed that you and your ‘urban family’ won’t be able to bag the centre sofas, but it could be a fun alternative to after-work drinks.


If you’re still unsure about taking that potentially painful trip down memory lane, Gunther (no really, he’s actually opening the cafe on 23 Sept) and co are offering a FREE COFFEE voucher to download from 14 September – could that BE any more generous?

Central Perk in London, 24 September-7 October, 67 Broadwick Street, London, W1F 9QX.