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A little advice on art fair packing
Packing for art fairs is not easy, but we help you manage the basics
Art Stuff 12 Oct 2019

Packing for art fairs is not easy, you have to look presentable, kind of approachable, and chic, while at the same time enduring long hours standing up and walking around chatting to potential clients.
Whether you are just visiting as press or whether you are a gallerist, collector, artist… there is a fine line between comfort and elegance that you need to find.
I’m still working on this duality, this year, my outfits for Art Basel left much to be desired, but I stepped up for Art Berlin (I had home advantage so not sure it counts). As this tidal wave of art fairs begins and I begin to plan what to pack for FIAC, I decided to give you an honest and detailed packing list with some minor observations so you can adjust it to your own style, and weather!
– High necks – these are my go to, I don’t feel I can pull off formal shirts or blouses, but if you do this where you would need to not them down on your packing list.But hear me out: High-necks are an amazing compromise between formality and elegance and provide a high levels of coziness. They look so stylish with a blazer too and keep you protected fro aircon at the fair.
– Blazer or cool/smart jacket – here is where you can truly make a high neck shine. Go with something colourful or a print — stand out at the art fair and make people remember you without looking like a funny parrot.
– Overcoat – it’s autumn – so the best way to look extra chic is to have a smart raincoat. Thank me later.
– Shoes – I say ditch the heels, why be uncomfortable for potentially over 8 hours of art fair business, when you can wear some fashionable trainers or boots.
– Underwear – (yes I’m going there) go with halves, so half comfy, half lingerie, because let’s be real, sometimes, lingerie gives you that extra boost of self-confidence, it’s like your own little secret. Lord knows you need some confidence to deal with certain types of clients or artists.
– Toiletries – I always bring the very basics only because of the dreaded little plastic bags at airports.
– Make up – I bring the basics for a natural look, I feel going for anything more complicated will result in half of the make up melting halfway through the day as I eat terrible junk food in some stand.
– Medicine cabinet/miscellaneous – bring either Ibuprofen and Paracetamol for the inevitable after party hangover which you have to endure the next (and early) morning at the bright lighted fair. Also you might want to bring along some candies to keep your throat oiled from all the talking.
I use to kid myself and pack a book to read and all these extras but the truth is I barely have time to breath, so when I get back to the hotel/airbnb I just crash into a deep sleep. I do bring my laptop in case I need to do some writing, but mostly I can deal with e-mails with my trusty phone.
Packing the basics also helps deal with any pre-fair stress, it’s good to have lists, and systems for the same reason. And remember, kids, stay hydrated!
Text by: Barbara Borges de Campos

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