New arts collective The Few and Far Between launches tonight with a three-day exhibition at The Rag Factory. The show features gifted students and graduates from top art schools, including The Royal College of Art, Central Saint Martins, London College of Fashion and Chelsea College of Art & Design, as well as established creatives Zeroten and Baiba Ladiga. Headed up by promoter Rebecca Goodyear and illustrator Tabitha Booth, amongst other emerging artists, the group offers a collaborative ethos of strength in numbers as an alternative to the ever more exclusive option of commercial gallery representation. Dazed spoke to Goodyear and Booth about their mission, motivations and future plans.
Dazed Digital: What's your mission?
The Few and Far Between: Our mission is to provide a platform through which artists from all different walks of life can exhibit and sell their work without having to pay extortionate amounts to a middleman. Through collaborative exhibitions we aim to get everybody's artwork out to a wider audience than it might otherwise reach.
DD: What interested you in the Rag Factory - an East End rehearsal and filming studio - as a venue for your first exhibition?
The Few and Far Between: The Rag Factory is a great space, it was on our shortlist of venues from the beginning. There is also a great synergy between both parties' ideals. They provide affordable space for artists, which fits in perfectly with our mission statement. Thanks to this fact and our sponsors, Cass Art and Beck's beer amongst others, we have been able to offer exhibition space to over 100 artists completely free.
DD: Why such an interdisciplinary mix in the show?
The Few and Far Between: We are firm believers in "art for all" and didn't want to restrict anybody from exhibiting in our first show. We also thought it would make for an interesting and exciting exhibition with no rules or regulations, a fresh and invigorating show.
DD: Entice us with some of the exhibition's highlights...
The Few and Far Between: We don't want to give too much away, but we have art from several well known and established artists including the illustrator Zeroten, and fashion stylist and photographer Baiba Ladiga.
DD: Why are so many young artists working outside of the conventional, commercial gallery and publishing routes?
The Few & Far Between: We believe many have become disheartened and lost faith in this modes. In these mainstream arts circles, there is too much emphasis on exclusivity and high prices, as well as "who it's by". We hope to give unknown artists the exposure to break through in a fiercely competitive market.
DD: Any future plans for The Few & Far Between you'd like to divulge?
The Few and Far Between: This year you can expect to see more cooperative art shows in London and across the UK. We are also looking to branch out to international locations, next stop New York!
The Few and Far Between, January 8-9, The Rag Factory, 16-18 Heneage Street, London E1 5LJ