A Night Out in DTLA: The Other Art Fair

Recently I was in downtown LA to check out Saatchi's: The Other Art Fair, an alternative kind of art fair. Art fairs aren't usually the best way to view art, in that you're usually in a cold, sterile environment like a convention center and it's usually bored sales people from the galleries represented fielding the questions. Not so with The Other Art Fair, each artist featured has their own space and is manning their own booth, so you can ask questions and get to know the person behind the masterpiece. Instead of the traditional gallery system where you buy from the gallery that represents the artist, you are buying directly from the artist, and get to leave with your artwork that night!

Janna Conner walking down aisle between art booths at the other art show majestic downtown la

The show was in the Majestic Downtown, a giant space with very high ceilings, and with the dj and the cocktails flowing, it really seemed more like a giant fun party than an art fair. The Other Art Fair started in 2011 in London, and now spans worldwide with this show being the first in Los Angeles. Next up I believe is Chicago and they are already showing in New York and in Australia.  

art in background with people in the dark foreground other art show at the majestic downtown la

 This show is perfect for novices and experts alike. There really is something for everyone and it's incredibly interactive. I went one night but could have been there all weekend as there was so much to see and learn. There was an Instagram friendly Glitter Wall, complementary 30 minute guided art advisory tours, art talks, portrait sittings for kids and adults, a VR tour of the Arctic, a Sound Bath sonic experience not to mention the artists themselves, standing by ready to answer any question you might have. 

bar and cocktails and bartenders at the Majestic Downtown LA for the Other Art Fair

Look at those original ceilings, such gorgeous architectural details in dtla. The drinks were a little too delicious ( I drank 3!, don't worry I took Lyft!)  I fell in love with a spicy infused tequila drink that I'm currently trying to figure out how to re-create at home.

father and son at the other art show in la

I saw a lot of kids at the show, always love a mix of family friendly with art, it's a great way to start kids off appreciating art from a young age.

Janna Conner drawing on kitten cartoon wall by Tim Andrew at the other art fair downtown la

Coloring the Kitten Wall by Tim Andrew @timandrewart

Australian artist Tim Andrew's interactive experience, The Kitten Wall. Like a Giant adult coloring book turned wallpaper. This would be an awesome idea for a kids room!

Desirée Patterson @desireefineart drove all the way down from Vancouver to exhibit. She uses a really interesting technique of printing her photographs on metallic paper, with a matte, luminous quality. I especially liked the bleeding palm trees and the Joshua tree and her use of subtly silvery pastels.

Laura Browning artist standing with water paintings at the Other art fair at the majestic downtown LA

Laura Browning in front of her water paintings @laura.browning.art

Next up: Laura Browning. Hailing from the Bay Area, she primarily paints water studies. She has a young child and we chatted about the work/life balance of motherhood. She loves painting water either pool water or the ocean, which takes her on many a beach vacation. Sounds great! She told me how mood greatly affects her painting process and how when she's in a bad mood she won't go into the studio because it always comes out in her work. She always paints with a peaceful mind which comes out in her meditative, tranquil water studies. Her pieces would be a great calming influence in a bedroom or really anywhere!

Cody Choi standing in front of his photographs at the other art fair at the majestic downtown la

Cody Choi @codysmoving 

Cody Choi lives in London and is a dancer primarily by training but took up photography on his many dance tours. His photos are often of other dancers and of himself. Dynamic and energetic, they truly are a moment captured in time.

Kim West with neon palm tree painting at the Other Art Show the majestic Downtown LA

Kim West in front of her paintings @westkim

I was walking the corner when a wall of neon bright colored paintings caught my eye, I realized it was Kim West, an artist I had been following on Instagram. She never posts pictures of herself and I guess growing up in LA with so many Korean friends, had assumed she was a young Korean man. It was so funny to see that she was a blonde woman, about my age. I love her bright happy colors and streaky colors. She told me how the large painting of palm trees came about from long trips to and from Santa Barbara to visit a sick friend and the views from the car during these frequent road trips. She also explained how part of her creative process and how some of the paintings were from a series where it was the underprint of another artwork on top of it transferred to the bottom layer. 

aerial view of the art booths at the other art show at the majestic downtown laBird's eye view of the artist booths on the ground floor of the Majestic Downtown

Janna Conner and Raf Niclaes in glitter chamber glitter rainbow backdrop by Kelly Brumfield-Woods

Kelly Brumfield-Woods Glitter Chamber @kellybrumfieldswoods

To be honest, this was the only piece that I felt they could have done more with at the show. Billed as a glitter chamber, it was really more of a glitter fabric backdrop than a chamber. I had envisioned swirling glitter enveloping us in an immersion tank, but it was just a background. Oh well, it still made for a nice picture!

neon pink Keith Richards drawing by Michael o'neal at the other art show la

Keith Richards by Michael O'Neal

Michael o'neal artist in front of drawings of woody Allen and Krs-one at the other art show la

Michael O'Neal @colorlined

At first glance you might walk by Michael O'Neal's artwork and think they're just pretty reproductions of famous people. But if you stop and look closer they're actually cut paper overlays made in a painfully painstaking process that takes months. If he slips with his blade, they're ruined and he has to start over. The incredibly photographic quality of the images underneath are actually his drawings that he places underneath the slatted netting. The effect is very 3-D, trompe l'oeil and is really interesting how it changes when viewed from different angles. 

Michael o'neal tiger growling drawing at the other art show in laTiger roaring by Michael O'Neal

Can't wait to see The Other Art Fair when it's back in town next! If you can't wait that long, it will be in Chicago in September!

Are you an art lover? Have you been to The Other Art Fair? Tell me in the comments below!

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So cool that you were able to interact with the kitten wall! I even find it more amazing that you were able to speak with the actual artists! How do you exactly come up with the right questions though? Sometimes art can be so abstract, I wouldn’t know the right questions to ask!


Delightful! You look like you had fun! I love an event that engages its guest. What a great contrast it is when you expect a stark environment! Love the kitty wall and the photos you took to take us along!

Evelyn, PathofPresence

Such a magical looking gallery. Looks like my kind of night surrounded by creativity and beauty.

tachira wiltshire

Such a magical looking gallery. Looks like my kind of night surrounded by creativity and beauty.

tachira wiltshire

I have never visited a art gallery but I really need to visit one. To see the beautiful artwork with some drinks would be an amazing experience.


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