Grace Miceli’s Disruptive Art Empire

As part of our ongoing partnership with Depop, we sat down with one of their freshest artists, and one of the newest members of the We Are Pop Up community, Grace Miceli (aka Art Baby Girl). 

Grace Miceli considers her two titles of artist and curator to be inseparable. “Creating and collaborating go together,” she said, over coffee at Spreadhouse. Google her name and you’ll fall into a magic-marker-internet wonderland. Her Instagram. Her online gallery. Her coverage in Broadly, W Magazine, Nylon and The New York Times.

Grace Miceli

Miceli is building an art empire by cultivating a community of artists whose work spans from interactive digital to apparel prints. Her exhibitions combine art and retail, so that throughout a show, visitors can purchase featured artists’ more affordable art (hats and t-shirts, for instance). The daughter of an artist and musician, Miceli’s goal is to make art approachable, enabling virgin collectors to explore the art world sans “Chelsea pretension.”

By combining the power of contemporary art and accessible retail, Miceli repositions the sterile art gallery as a friendly shop, where visitors are greeted by a smile instead of flat neglect. This shift benefits curious collectors and artists alike. “An artist’s work on a baseball cap travels a lot further than a print hanging up in an apartment,” said Miceli. In the past year, Miceli’s art displayed at Outlaw Art Space, Bushwick Open Studios, Vox Populi, and Transfer Gallery.

Art Baby Girl

Miceli’s creative retail approach fosters an inclusive community online and off. From LiveJournal to Tumblr and then to Instagram, Miceli has evolved alongside the internet; she uses her online and mobile presence to showcase her art and collaborations. Miceli’s iterative process generates a steady stream of feedback, finetuning and conversation. And now, she’s gearing up for a cross-country tour. She’s curating at Sunday, Los Angeles in February, and then launching a US-wide gallery tour with Brooklyn’s Alt Space. “I’m excited to have the chance to meet artists who don’t live in NYC, it will be interesting to learn about artists whose practices exist in different and smaller cities.”

On her migration from online to retail spaces, Miceli says, “this started online, and that’s how it needed to start.” We can’t wait to see what Miceli has in store – and in stores. Visit her on We Are Pop Up and Depop.


Interested in becoming a Depop seller? Drop us a line and we’ll connect you!

 

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The Weekly Round-Up

Treat her

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The TREAT Pop Up for Mother’s Day will showcase a collective of ideas and products from the Escape the City Startup Tribe, all wrapped up in a unique concept store in the heart of Covent Garden. Read more here and stay updated on Twitter with #shedeservesatreat.

Listen

The Wintergartan Marble Machine is a mind-blowing hand-made music box that powers a kick drum, bass, vibraphone and other instruments using a hand crank and 2,000 marbles. Marvel at the music with some good headphones. (WIRED)

Create

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Pantone has launched 112 new colours for graphic design, collaborating with designers including Sagmeister & Walsh partner Jessica Walsh, Pentagram partner Eddie Opara and book cover designer Chip Kidd. (It’s Nice That)

Watch

An exclusive look at the making of the mesmerising video for Black Lake with the combined genius of Björk, Andrew Thomas Huang and Autodesk. (The Creators Project)

Read

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The founder of movie streaming service MUBI, Efe Cakarel, on data-driven selection and the abundance of choice. (Freunde von Freunden)

 

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TREAT your Mama: the Mother’s Day Pop Up Challenge

50 entrepreneurs.
5 start-ups.
2 days.
1 winner.

This weekend 5th – 6th March will see the return of We Are Pop Up and Escape the City to 44 Shelton Street in Covent Garden. With a new Startup Tribe line-up, five teams have been set the challenge of creating a lifestyle brand to launch in TREAT, a concept store for Mother’s Day weekend located in the heart of one of London’s top shopping districts.

Escape the City is on a mission to help talented professionals escape unfulfilling jobs and forge exciting, unconventional career paths. As one element of the Startup Tribe’s ‘intensive introduction to entrepreneurship’, the Pop Up Challenge sets this group of innovators the task to get creative, bring their ideas to life and launch a start-up from scratch. TREAT will showcase a collective of their products for two days only, all wrapped up in a unique concept store dedicated to all the Mothers out there because, of course, #shedeservesatreat.

To add a dose of healthy competition, once again the challenge will result in a winning team: the one that not only makes the most profit, but also gains the biggest social media following and creates the most impressive overall branding. For that we welcome back in-house pop-up and visual merchandising expert, Daniel Peters of BBS Clothing.

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The clock is ticking until the doors open at 11am on Saturday and concepts so far include handcrafted skincare goodies inspired by Mother Nature herself, and a curated selection of customisable products designed to eliminate ‘generic gifts’. Our friends at Bloomon will also be joining the teams in-store to showcase their fresh flower delivery service and light up the space with their utterly original bouquets.

Keep an eye on Twitter with #shedeservesatreat for the latest updates and to see how the challenge unfolds. Head over to the TREAT Pop Up website for more.

 

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A Smashing Success: Snack To The Future at Artists & Fleas, Williamsburg

This past Sunday, February 28th, the NYC foodie community gathered at Artists & Fleas’ Williamsburg location where they snacked their way through the day at ‘Snack to the Future.’ During the day, customers were invited to try samples from all the attending food vendors, and vote on their favorite. And to make things even sweeter, the cult classic ‘Back to the Future’ was screened!

We were delighted to see some amazing We Are Pop Up brands during the day. Check this delicious crew out! Want to collaborate with them? Click through and send a message via We Are Pop Up!

Want to get involved with the Artists & Fleas community? You can pop up at Artists & Fleas’ amazing pop-out space!

Snack to the Future
Especially Puglia
Snack to the Future
Tiny Kitchen Treats
Snack to the Future
Scone Alone
Snack to the Future
Phoebe’s Sourdough
Tiny Kitchen Treats
Tiny Kitchen Treats
Better IceCreamed
Better IceCreamed

 

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That’s A Wrap: The Store(y)telling Gift Shop, NYC

Over the past two weeks, We Are Pop Up joined forces with Parasol Projects, Creative CNTRL and Retail Access to create and curate a flash gift shop in the Lower East Side. And the clincher? From ideation to populating the space, the crew behind this pop up executed it in a single week. Entitled “The Store(y)telling Giftshop” the activation featured 15 of New York’s freshest brands:

St. Ash Of Brooklyn, Proper Assembly, Martenero, Dirty Grl, March Caps, Thursday Finest, ETape, Hickies, Beltology, Lulu KrauseGemela, Loop De Loup, Baron Nahmias, Little Treats Brigadeiros and MDSolarSciences.

The gift shop was an exploration in real-time visual merchandising; the entire experience featured a selection of curated stories that tied every brand into their narratives. On the pop up’s second day, we hosted a panel discussion at Projective Space at Freemans, where all the operational crew and all of the involved designers met to discuss the future of creative retail, and how traditional retail models have evolved into something more meaningful, bespoke and engaging.

Check out photos, and drop us a line if this inspires you! And check out We Are Pop Up’s list of NYC brands and spaces

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The pop up’s designers and operational team during the roundtable at Projective Space at Freemans.
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Inside The Store(y)telling Gift Shop!

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It’s all just space: How new ideas are redefining the shopping centre

What is the future of brand? Why are urban farms relevant to me? How do we create meaningful human interactions in commercial spaces? How are brands using pop ups to grow?

These are just some of the questions that will be answered on 22nd March, when brands, leading retailers, agents and leasing experts will be coming together for the annual SPREE Europe innovation day. We Are Pop Up is thrilled to be Chairing the event. The conference is aimed at helping brands and shopping centre professionals learn more about the €6bn specialty retail industry that consists of pop-up stores, kiosks and experiential events. It’s the key annual innovation conference for EU shopping centre operators and developers and we’ll be taking the opportunity as Chair to showcase the bravest and boldest new models. To attend and find out more, all the details are here.

The Programme:
Tuesday 22nd March 2016
Islington Design Centre

9.00
Registration and Networking

9.30
Welcome Address
Clara Maguire: Chief Operating Officer, We Are Pop Up

9.40
10 New Retail Rules
Aaron Shields: Strategy Director Europe & Russia, Fitch

10.10
Immersive Experiences
Rupert Pick: Planning Director & Co-Founder, Hot Pickle
Lucy Johnston: Author, Brand Experience Curator & Founder, The Neon Birdcage
Dr Maggie Atkinson: Think Tank Member, Kidzania
Moderator: Petah Marian, Senior Editor Retail Intelligence, WGSN

10.40
‘Go Local’ Future Malls
Charlie Gent – Marketing Manager, Pop Brixton

11.40
Rise of the Retail Curator
Arianna Cefis: Founder, HC HQ Ltd & Kings Road Concept Store
Elisicia Moore: Founder & Director, Petit Miracles
Kathrine Heiberg: CEO, Re-Team Group & Mytiful Stores
Moderator: Emily Wright, Features & Global Editor, Estates Gazette

12.25
It’s all just space! Uses beyond retail
Fabian Weinlander: Director of Project Development, UrbanFarmers
James Layfield: Founder & CEO, Central Working
Tom Tobia: Co-Founder, Makerversity
Moderator: TBC

12:55
Lunch & Networking

14:10
How I Grew My Brand With Specialty Leasing
Jonny Burt: Co-Founder, The Unit
Daniel Peters: Founder, BBSC
Sandro Abeille: International Expansion, Chiquita Fruit Bar
Moderator:  Dan Innes, Managing Director, Innesco

14.40
Understanding New Brand Behaviour
Leading Brand Agency TBC

15:10 
Break

15.40
The Rise & Rise of F&B
Jonathan Downey, Co-Founder, London Union
Atholl Milton, CEO & Co-Founder, StreetDots
Dimple Lalwani, CEO & Founder, Social Belly
Moderator: Richard Johnson, award-winning food journalist, consultant and founder of the British Street Food Awards

16:25
Weak Signals of New Valuation Models
Speaker from CBRE

17:00
Closing Remarks 

17:15
Networking Drinks Reception
Axis Bar, Hilton London: Angel, Islington

 

We will lift the lid on innovative approaches to space use, consumer engagement, new brand behaviour, underlying drivers of demand, and business models. The programme has been developed based on our belief that retail and public realm space is a platform to unlock new ideas, create jobs, drive economic development, and create exciting places in the heart of communities.

With demand for fractional use of space from brands massive and growing rapidly, by lowering the barriers for entrepreneurs to get into space we are powering the creative retail movement. This is a movement built on connections that give birth to new retail concepts – from brand mash-ups, to collaborative leasing, and it’s being embraced by brands of all sizes, from start-up to global conglomerate.

The intensive one-day programme will address all aspects of the €6bn global specialty leasing sector including top industry trends; innovative immersive experiences; the rise of retail curating and how it can be leveraged to create a unique specialty programme; creative uses for vacant space in shopping centres beyond retail such as urban farming on rooftops, office space and industrial production; case studies from brands who will share how specialty pop-up store space has enabled them to trial new concepts and grow organically; and how food is changing the face of specialty retail.

Guest speakers include the world’s leading retail and brand consultancy Fitch; London Union – the next venture from the Founders of Street Feast and Leon; brand licensing and retail innovation experts Hot Pickle; Neon Birdcage; Kidzania; Pop Brixton; Concept Store Kings Rd; Petite Miracles; Mytiful; Soho success story The Unit; Dead Dolls House; Street Dots; Social Belly and CBRE.

 

“As our Cities swell to accommodate urbanisation – space becomes an increasingly precious commodity. Unlocking its value requires us to move beyond traditional concepts of yield management, long term leasing and retail conglomerates taking on multiple units.

How we enable that shift and make the Shopping Centre relevant to tomorrow’s brands will play a key part in the future viability of these retail assets and the communities they serve.”

(Clara Maguire, We Are Pop Up’s COO)

Patricia Norins, ICSC’s Vice President of Specialty Retail, who launched SPREE Europe in 2015, explains, “The specialty retail industry is making a significant difference in the global retail real estate landscape. ICSC’s SPREE events aim to bring together the leading brands, agents and those executives who are using specialty formats such as kiosks, pop-up stores and sponsorship to drive footfall, diversity and excitement.” She tells us, “We are thrilled to have We Are Pop Up as a 2016 sponsor and their COO, Clara Maguire serving as the SPREE Europe conference chair. Their deep expertise and connections in the pop-up store sector has helped to significantly shape the event by helping ICSC to attract a powerful line-up of innovative industry speakers.”

We are thrilled to be involved too, and would love to see you on the day. To attend or find out more, all the details are here.

 

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The Store(y)telling Gift Shop – Tomorrow and Friday in Nolita, NYC

We’re popping up Thursday and Friday with The Store(y)telling Gift Shop at 2 Rivington St. The pop up is an experimentation in real-time curation inspired by Fashion Week’s direct-to-consumer shows. Fashion moves at the speed of media now, so we got together with some friends for a challenge: Create a concept store with visionary New York designers – in just one week. Thursday and Friday, We Are Pop Up, Parasol Projects, Creative CNTRL and Retail Access invite you to 2 Rivington Street for The Store(y)telling Gift Shop. 11am to 8pm.Featuring our favorite NYC fashion creatives like St. Ash, Proper Assembly, Martenero, Dirty Grl, March Caps, Thursday Finest and Gemela. From Ziggy Stardust soap to Magritte-inspired sweaters to Rio-to-Brooklyn rings, The Store(y)telling Gift Shop curates across cultures, categories and color palettes. The Gift Shop has customized belts from Beltology, upcycled brass jewelry by Loop de Loup, Hickies lace-free laces, fig liquor by Baron Nahmias and more. All elegantly tied together by Creative CNTRL. We believe in freedom of expression through retail, and The Store(y)telling Gift Shop lets you discover some of New York City’s most creative designers without having to scour the web.We’ve engineered a new creative retail store, stripping away traditional fixtures in favor of interactive displays, vinyls and artistic staging.

We invite you to touch and engage with each of the products, share the #StoreytellingLES experience n the gram and get a gift for yourself or a friend. Join us on a journey to explore visual merchandising and a storybook experience. Each brand is featuring five items with prices ranging from free (Little Treats Brigadeiros + Nahmias) to $495, with a happy median of $125. For private tours, email gregs@wearepopup.com. Pop up retail POS proudly provided by Lightspeed.

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We Are Pop Up scoops Best Hackney Business Award 2016

The We Are Pop Up team were delighted to win the award for Best Business 2016 at the Mayor of Hackney’s Business Awards last night.

The winner of each award category was selected by a panel of leading business figures, headed up by the Mayor of Hackney himself, Jules Pipe. Rather fittingly, the Awards bash took place at the Borough’s own versatile pop up space and long-standing We Are Pop Up customer, BL-NK.

“The awards help to showcase the extraordinary work of the local business community, rewarding those who contribute most to the life and prosperity of the borough’s economy.”

Jules Pipe, Mayor of Hackney

The award recognised We Are Pop Up’s outstanding contribution to the Borough, but we couldn’t have done it without the innovation and creativity of local Hackney businesses. Our very first customers were based in Hackney and since then, we’ve all been growing together, to pioneer the future of creative retail.

“This award means a lot to us. We Are Pop Up started with a few brands and shops in Hackney in 2014. Hackney is one of London creative and entrepreneurial epicentres, and our early – and current – customers reflect that spirit and drive. Today, we have offices in London and New York, and we’ve moved customers between 22 countries around the world. Hackney remains one of our most sought-after destinations, and we’re proud to be a Hackney business through and through.”

Nicholas Russell, Founder and CEO of We Are Pop Up

Since we first launched the world’s first fully automated real estate transaction, customers from 22 countries have used the service to book over 42 years of pop up space. In Hackney Borough alone we’re trusted by over 250 retail and hospitality spaces, and we’re only just getting started.

The pop up events and retail experiences that brands and spaces create using the We Are Pop Up platform are helping Hackney’s retail and service economy, and keeping it firmly on the map as a destination. Brands that We Are Pop Up has matched with retail spaces across Hackney include Secret Cinema, Edwin Jeans, Playn Eyewear, MOO.com and Blend & Press amongst others.

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Emma Wood, Founder of Blend & Press

And boutique owners from Stoke Newington to Shoreditch have embraced ShopShare, using the We Are Pop Up platform to book brands into their spaces and collaborate with each other.

We Are Pop Up’s ShopShare is helping to shore up the high street by supporting independent retailers to make money from their retail space. Our mission is to help independent retail thrive by thinking differently about the possibilities of space. In talking to our users we realised that we could do more to help smaller brands that wanted to test concepts in the market without committing to rent an entire shop.

That’s why we launched ShopShare in the first place. It’s an opportunity for shops to rent out part of their floorspace, from a rail, a table, a shelf or a concession, or even the whole shop.

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As any discerning culture vulture knows, pop ups are synonymous with culture, entrepreneurship and the arts. The We Are Pop Up site is the destination for creative retail which encompasses everything from fashion and accessories to pop up cinema, food, art and design. The brands using our site to book spaces are keeping Hackney’s cultural diary very busy with their events and pop up launches. From Secret Cinema to a ‘pop up coin op’ gaming studio in Clapton, to a Porridge Café in Hoxton, there’s always something new being added to the Borough’s cultural diary.

Right now, pop ups in the Borough include:

Facebar London at Butchers Hair Salon – a professional makeup bar in a creative hair salon on Hackney Road offering the services of experienced fashion industry makeup artists at much more accessible prices.

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Nicola Fiveash, Founder of Facebar London

The Joinery at Showroom Shoreditch – an organic and ethically mindful fashion brand based in Cape Town, South Africa collaborating with a concept store and designer showroom to bring products direct from townships in Africa to the hands of Hackney fashionistas.

“Our garments and leather accessories are produced by hand out of local townships in Cape Town by local women’s sewing co-operatives. We started The Joinery to provide an alternative to the way apparel and accessories are produced. We absolutely love We are Pop up! It has been super beneficial for us.”

Natalie and Kim, Founders of The Joinery.

Sisters Natalie and Kim, founders of The Joinery
Sisters Natalie and Kim, Founders of The Joinery

We were very pleased to hear that the Best Hackney Business Award also recognises the company’s environmental work in the Borough. We Are Pop Up’s Founding CEO, Nicholas Russell, is from a sustainability background and the business today remains true to his original vision to ‘recycle’ property, sourcing latent supply of space and making it available to book easily online. For example, we heard from Rio Cinema that the venue had a disused basement. Using We Are Pop Up, they were able to connect directly with Monograph London, a sushi supperclub brand which has now used the space for a full series of events. An under-utilised public space. A brand thirsty for a unique venue. We Are Pop Up helps creative retailers to make unexpected connections like this daily – there are no barriers and few boundaries.

 

To all our early-adopters, supporters and pop up entrepreneurs across the borough of Hackney and beyond – this award is all of ours. To you, we raise a glass and toast to pioneering the future of creative retail.

 

If you’re a Hackney-based business and you’d like to list your space or shop with We Are Pop Up then we’d love to hear from you. And if you’re a brand looking to find space and meet other brands then we’d love to hear from you too. 

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The Weekly Round-Up

Go

New invite

In 2014, artist and illustrator Jane Moore drew a sketch a day for the year. Inspired by this, poet Kirstin Maguire (sister of our very own COO Clara) interpreted ‘sketch’ in poetry and wrote a piece a day for 2015. The awesome book brings together a selection of their works – head down to We Are Facility on 25th February 6-9pm for an evening of readings.

Listen

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Pick a country, pick a decade between the 1900s and today and let yourself get carried away by the most beautiful musical library the world has to offer. Radiooooo started as an Indiegogo project and is now filled with tracks discovered by users from all over the world. Explore for yourself or check out this list from The Fader of their favourite finds.

Read

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This article from Creative Review – Turner Prize-winning collective Assemble on Granby Four Streets, empowering communities and transforming public spaces. “We’re interested in different ways you can engage with a city … for us, the best to do this is through direct action and experimentation.”

Draw

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Instead of life models, the subjects in Wild Life Drawing classes include chameleons, dogs, bats, donkeys, tortoises and micro pigs (sadly that last one has sold out). The drawing classes are open to all, from beginner to advanced, and aim to inspire appreciation and understanding of animals and conservation issues. Read Founder Jennie Webber’s interview with Grafik.

 

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Yelp and Not Another Salon Present: Not Another Hair Event

We Are Pop Up has teamed up with our friends at Yelp and Not Another Salon as part of Yelp’s events series for its super-users, the Yelp Elite, held at some of the hottest spots in London. Not Another Hair Event  on Thursday 18th February is the ultimate creative salon evening featuring food, drink, personalised hair colour, nail design and arts and crafts in a secret psychedelic 70s-style room. Featured brands will include Pirate’s Grog Rum, Bubbleology and Chipotle and although the event is full, we’ve got tickets for two lucky winners – all you have to do is retweet us here by 5pm Wednesday 17th and we’ll announce the results. Alternatively you can still put your name down on the waitlist in case a space opens up.

We Are Pop Up spoke to Community Director of Yelp in London Alex Shebar before the event to get the lowdown on what’s in store for lucky Yelp users.

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Hi Alex, tell us about Yelp and why you’re doing Not Another Hair Event. 

Yelp is a city guide that helps you live like a local, no matter if you’re new to the area or if you’ve been in your city your entire life. You can find amazing restaurants, bars, stores, even things like cinemas, theatre, sports, doctors, parks and more. It’s unlike any other site out there because it’s focused on the people who live, work and play in the city they live in. We’re running the Not Another Hair Event to show all these things off. It’s at Not Another Salon, which this amazing, bright, colourful salon in Brick Lane that’s worth checking out, and then filling the party with great local businesses like espresso martinis and bubble tea and burritos and wine and so much more. If you’ve never been to a Yelp event before, come! And if you don’t have the app yet, download it here now. It will make your day-to-day life so much more fun.

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Why did you choose to work with Not Another Salon and We Are Pop Up for this event? 

Not Another Salon is this amazing salon that really, truly, isn’t like any other salon, from both the decor to the staff. It’s one of these spots you really have to see to feel how cool and different they are, and we wanted to promote that. And then working with We Are Pop Up was a no-brainer. They have some of the best pop-ups happening in London and some really amazing local businesses. We wanted to show them off too, and absolutely have them at our party!

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What are you most looking forward to about the evening? What can we expect?

The whole event is going to be a good time, from the food, to the drinks, to the salon activities to just the people. If you’ve never been to a Yelp event before, you’ve never met a friendlier bunch of local Londoners. You’ll come, try new things, see a fantastic space, learn about local spots and meet new people. What’s not to love?

Check out the Yelp London events page for gigs, talks, tea, classes and more.

 

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