October. The month where we wave goodbye to summer and say an apprehensive 'hello' to winter. It’s no longer socially acceptable to constantly wear sunnies (but we do it anyway), and it’s not close enough to Christmas to stay in every night binge watching Love Actually or Bridget Jones.

But October isn’t that bad! Halloween is getting closer, pumpkin spice lattes are back and London’s cultural scene is kicking off.

This month we’ve highlighted our top picks for what’s going on in the capital. From
Frieze London’s iconic art fair to Vegan Oktoberfest. Yes, that’s right… Vegan Oktoberfest. You better get ready for some serious literature, art and of course, booze.

1–54 Contemporary African Art Fair
The London arts scene is booming this October. 1-54 Contemporary African Art Fair is returning for its seventh edition at Somerset House, and this year it’s bigger than ever. 1-54 is the first leading art fair dedicated to contemporary art from Africa, showcasing the works of 140 multidisciplinary artists of both established and emerging profile from 45 carefully-selected international galleries; it brings together a diverse set of perspectives, establishing itself as a leading voice in the global discussion of contemporary African art. Meanwhile, the fair will also be accompanied by 1-54 FORUM, curated by Kerryn Greenberg, Head of International Collection Exhibitions at Tate. This will include panel discussions with international artists, producers and curators, film screenings and artist talks. 

We’re really looking forward to seeing Angolan artist, Kiluanji Kia Henda’s sculpture, which has been selected for the 2019 edition of the 1-54 Courtyard Sculpture Commission. Kia Henda will present Fortress from her series A City Called Mirage, investigating the idea of cities oscillating between the states of virtuality and desertification.

1-54 Contemporary African Art Fair runs from 3-6 October at South, East and West Wings of Somerset House, Strand, London, WC2R 1LA.

Image credit: Caitlin Cherry, Innervision, 2019. Curtesy of Luce Gallery.

Frieze London
Do not fear, Frieze London is back this October to satisfy all of your contemporary art and culture needs. As always, the art fair will return to Regent’s Park from the 3rd to the 6th of October. Since being founded in 1991, Frieze has become globally renowned as THE definitive resource for art and culture. Expect to see a beautiful harmony of work, from critically acclaimed British and international artists, to the up-and-coming stars of tomorrow.

Our highlight for this event is Alex Eagle Studio Presents 'Eleonor' by Roberto Ruspoli. Ruspoli is a Paris-based artist with an unpretentious, metamorphic versatility to his work. He re-elaborates universally recognisable images into a spontaneous, minimalist abstraction – blending a borderless sketch with a timeless style. Ruspoli’s art is unpretentious, cool and totally unique… We can’t wait to see what he brings to Frieze London.

Frieze London runs from 3-6 October at Regent’s Park, Chester Rd, London, NW1 4NR.

Image credit: Alex Eagle Studio Presents 'Eleonor' by Roberto Ruspoli.

Vegan Oktoberfest
It’s October… and what does that mean? It’s Oktoberfest! But what on earth could be better than Oktoberfest? Only VEGAN Oktoberfest.

Last year was the first ever vegan Oktoberfest, and it was so successful, it’s back again this year. Held in Greenwich Market, you’ll find some of London’s best vegan street stalls, including What's Poppin' Corn and Veganuti. Imagine 'würstl' and 'knödel' (yum?), but vegan! Whilst you try a fruitful variety of refreshing vegan beers, you can enjoy listening to a Greenwich band who’ll definitely get you into the party mood. 

And if all of that doesn’t get you excited, it’s free… so there’s no excuse not to go.

Vegan Oktoberfest will be held on Friday 4th of October, from 6.30pm to 10pm, at Greenwich Market, Greenwich Peninsula, London SE10 9HZ.

Image credit: www.vegtoberfest.co.uk

London Literature Festival

Returning for its thirteenth year, Southbank Centre’s London Literature Festival is back. This year, the festival’s theme is Once Upon Our Times, exploring fairy and folk tales for contemporary society with today's leading writers, thinkers and cultural observers, bringing new resonance to timeless narratives. The festival navigates the contemporary relevance and democratic value of fairytales and celebrates the global and democratic nature of this storytelling tradition through live readings, new commissions and discussions. Think Harry Potter, The Handmaid’s Tale and Game of Thrones...

The festival’s duration is eleven days, featuring exclusive talks, poetry, performances, readings and much more from award-winning writers and artists. We’re particularly excited to see broadcaster and novelist Elizabeth Day present her latest book How To Fail, inspired by her hugely popular podcast.

London Literature Festival runs from 17 - 27 October at Southbank Centre, Belvedere Road, London, SE1 8XX. 

Also on Because:

+ Meet Chloe Isidora and learn how to embrace the principles of Sacred Self-Care.

+ Try candle making with candle aficionados Niko Dafkos and Paul Firmin, the co-founders of Earl Of East.

+ Update your coffee table tomes with September's top fashionable reads.