So much went on this past weekend: we had tons of people out of town for the first set of Coachella performances, everyone was biking around Sunday for CicLAvia, and there was a cool little something going on just North of the city at CalArts, CalArts Print Fair. Of the three events, we opted not to outdoor concert and to skip carless streets to head up to Valencia for the university’s first print fair.
The event started at 11AM Sunday and extended through 5PM. It was held in the Main Gallery of the school, which was an indoor square that was full of tables of little vendors who were trading, selling, and bartering things for art. The vibe in the Fair was very raw and youthful, much like a cafeteria full of creatives who wanted to swap their meal as they found theirs to be unsatisfactory.
The booths/vendors stretched across a very varied group of artists. On one end you had a girl selling her digital art prints while on another a guy was face painting. One table sold really nice black and white photos while another had a girl selling index cards she was drawing designs on for fifty cents. Some tables had zines, some tables had prints, some tables had CDs and tapes, and a table even had GOOD magazines accompanied by the magazine’s Editorial Design Director Dylan Lathrop, who held a little workshop at his booth. The event also saw lectures by artist and CalArts professor Ed Fella and Beautiful Decay‘s Amir Fallah, both of which were really great little entries into design fairy tales.
The event also had a few CalArts design celebrities like young’n designer extraordinaire Bijan Berahimi and the always amazing Scott Barry, who was selling super amazing work for just $5 each (and refused to take anymore, as we tried to slip a $20 for one in his coconut guarded envelope–but he made us take more prints). There were also a few other familiar faces like Charlyne Yi, who was selling some of her cutesy zines with No Girls Allowed, the people behind Stamped Books in Valencia, and even a table with tons of rad REDCAT posters because–duh–REDCAT is a product of CalArts.
The show highlights a very exciting, new phenomena in Los Angeles: a huge budding of graphic arts and design booming in Southern California. Events like this and USC’s Shelf Life and LA Zine Fest have pointed that we’re in a position in Los Angeles for design to explode, which is something we very obviously are stoked about. This fair also made us feel super, incredibly, ridiculously old as all the tables were full of students in tank tops that said things like “FUCK HIPSTERS,” sneakers with four inch platforms (a la, this), various hyper patterned apparel, and–of course–large crazy glasses only college art kids could entertain wearing. Nevertheless, the event was great, brought out everyone from students to families to dogs, and is something you need to be on the lookout for next year as it will surely be a much bigger event.