The granddaddy of London's art fairs, Frieze London, is only a few weeks away. Before that, this weekend affords the opportunity to catch START art fair.
START is a bit different to your usual art fair, in that it's a manageable size. So there's no risk of art fatigue, from seeing too much of the stuff in one go.
It's also held in the Saatchi Gallery, a more natural setting than the empty aircraft hangar-like venues you sometimes get.
There is a good mix of work here. Projects range from the bright and colourful light-filled installation of a garden by Sumakshi Singh, through to Mahmoud Obaidi's videos featuring knives, torture and a bloodied corpse — political pieces which have a particular resonance for this Iraqi born artist. It's not the kind of dark and gritty political art you'd find at a typical art fair.
We found plenty to love among the gallery stands too, from the post-apocalyptic digital images by Suzanne Moxhay to a ferocious lion made from steel and used tires by Ji Yong Ho.
It's also refreshing to see so many galleries from countries whose art scene we're completely unfamiliar with, such as Vietnam, Pakistan and Hungary. As well as a strong selection of British galleries scattered throughout the fair. This includes The Contemporary London who have brought painter Vasilis Avramidis. He merges the organic with the architectural to create delightful designs of surreal worlds suspended in inky darkness.
START has always felt refreshing as an art fair, and we're glad to report that it still feels that way three years in.
START art fair is on at Saatchi Gallery until 18 September. Tickets booked online are £10 for adults, £12 on the door.