To start an artist’s marketplace, you need to be an artist to undertand exactly what artists want from participating in an artist-run event. Besides having to manage and promote the marketplace, the bigger picture (and usually the major attraction) includes putting together an interesting mix of activities and artist line-up. Being able to do all these on top of running LIE design studio bring so much joy to Driv Loo, who is the founder of the Kuala Lumpur Art Book Fair, or KLABF in short. Driv has travelled to quite a few interesting places in his lifetime and worked at international advertising agencies abroad before returning to his home country and base his studio here.


How did you become involved in KLABF?
Having participated in art book fairs in several countries back in 2019, we hope to bring back that same inspiring experience to Malaysia; and provide a much-needed platform for creatives, printers, publishers, and the general public to directly interact and collaborate with each other.


Why do you think there is a need for an art book fair in Kuala Lumpur?
KLABF was born from the artist-run initiative and the DIY/self-publishing scene. We hope to address the lack of a physical creative “marketplace” that caters to vendors from creative fields such as graphic design, illustration, photography, creative writing, and printmaking. A creative marketplace that stands apart from (but also complements) the many craft/product-centric markets in KL.


What is your vision for KLABF?
Hopefully, KLABF will serve as an inclusive, accessible space for exhibitors to showcase and promote their work. A sort of marketplace that brings together the community through the practice of print and publishing, as well as contribute to future developments and economic opportunities for the local creative scene.



What key factors do you consider before choosing an event venue?
Besides taking the budget and transportation into consideration, the venue should be visually appealing to our audience. We were excited when The Godown team approached us, as the creative and art space offers the right kind of vibe for people to gather and interact; a place to bring inspiration to life.


What will the visitors be expecting from the second KLABF that are going to be different from the first one?
KLABF 2022 will be showcasing more self-published works from an exciting mix of local and international exhibitors! With the re-opening of the international borders, visitors can expect to see works by exhibitors from Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, Singapore, Japan, Korea, and more.