Art-World Insiders Select Frieze’s Must-See Works
The world’s most prominent collectors, curators, and dealers descended on Regent’s Park on Tuesday for the preview of Frieze London and Frieze Masters. We caught up with seven of them to find out which works stood out from the pack.
Following Monday night’s prelude to Frieze Week at the Zabludowicz Collection—the third release of digital artworks from online platform Daata Editions alongside Jon Rafman’s first major solo show in the U.K.—collector and art philanthropist Anita Zabludowicz was in high spirits on the first day of Frieze London. “It looks fabulous—it’s so vibrant,” she said, having walked only a third of the fair but already with a laundry list of favorites.
Among her highlights were a projection at Simon Preston by Chicago-born artist Amie Siegel, titled Double Negative (2015) (part of a series based around Le Corbusier’s Villa Savoye in Poissy, France) and a work she acquired from Athens gallery The Breeder by Greek artist Andreas Angelidakis. “He’s looking at the internet and the deconstruction of architecture on it, and how things would be in 1,000 years—when the internet is all ruins,” Zabludowicz explained.
Taken by Davide Balula’s minimal aerial sculptures at Francois Ghebaly—steel forms hooked up to WiFi routers that sync their respective colors to fairgoers’ cell phones, such that bright yellow took over her iPhone screen—Zabludowicz said: “They were like beautiful, minimalist sculptures. You would think ‘oh more, more, more of this minimalist sculpture.’ But suddenly this bright color pops up on your phone, which is actually the sculpture itself.”
Over at Stuart Shave/Modern Art, new work by Yngve Holen, an artist she’s been collecting for a couple of years, caught Zabludowicz’s eye. “It’s so lovely when we see the artist move on, and doing these institutional shows at the same time,” she said of Holen, slated for a show at Basel’s Kunsthalle in June. The work reprises a series of sculptures shown at Bonner Kunstverein earlier this year. “It’s these airplanes on empty washing machines. He’s shown on cardboard boxes but they got lost in translation. Suddenly they’re on washing machines and they feel alive.”
On 2015 Frieze Artist Award winner Rachel Rose’s commission, a scale model of the fair, she says: “You crawl in this little house—it’s just a roof—and you’re on this lovely cream carpet. You sit down and you listen to music. It’s almost like you’re in some nightclub, but you’re not. You’re under a roof in the middle of an art fair.”
“Unbelievable,” she says of London artist Samara Scott’s floor-covering relief at The Sunday Painter’s booth. “She’s developing so well and moving in exactly the direction that we thought she would because she’s such a hard worker. Aesthetically, she’s marvelous.”
COLLECTOR, film curator, director of daata editions and artprojx
David Gryn, film curator at Art Basel in Miami Beach and the director of both Daata Editions and Artprojx, was also caught smiling on day one—perhaps a given after news broke today that Daata Editions’s first season was both bought by the Julia Stoschek Collection and was also given as a gift by Daata Editions to the Hammer Museum. His favorites at Frieze? “I was taken by the work at Cabinet Gallery by Jay Chung & Q Takeki Maeda,” he said. “The booth is great—minimal and simple. I love the ‘less is more’ approach to an art fair, so you’re not being inundated by art.”
“I was also taken by the paintings,” Gryn said, referencing Mark Flood’s paintings at Stuart Shave, “but I’ll come back and look more.” Flood’s compositions are an extension of the artist’s take on corporate logos, and reminiscent of Rothko paintings. His approach to Flood’s work echoed his approach to film and video works he’d spotted that day. “I’ve seen moments in certain galleries that I liked and want to come back on quieter days to have a closer look at.”
Art attorney, UTA Fine Arts
Charged with leading the talent agency UTA into the art world, Roth covered plenty of ground on Tuesday. “I liked the Imi Knoebel at White Cube. That was pretty excellent, as was the Kerry James Marshall at David Zwirner’s stand,” said Roth, reflecting on the first day’s highlights.
In town for, among other things, a collaboration with the Haas Brothers, Roth was also quick to point to the prevalence of works by Günther Förg at Frieze London this year. “Every booth has a Förg,” he joked, adding that he was particularly taken by the artist’s piece at Greene Naftali Gallery. “CFA Berlin also has a great one on wood, one of the five-color pieces. It is so beautiful,” added Roth.
Over at Frieze Masters, Roth pointed to “a great Barbara Kruger at Per Skarstedt’s booth,” as one of his initial highlights as well as that of CARDI GALLERY. “I thought the Helly Nahmad booth of Jean Dubuffet was pretty amazing,” he added, joining a chorus of praise for the stand, which recreates the sanatoria, which inspired the Art Brut artist. Icing on the cake? “There’s a beautiful little Warhol, a silkscreen of guns, at Van de Weghe.”
Isaac Julien, one of Rolls Royce’s commissioned artists in 2015, who was touring the fair with artist Elaine Reichek, named Japanese gallery Taka Ishii’s booth as his favorite so far. “We always love this gallery—they’re a very important gallery in Tokyo,” he said. “The booth has Cerith Wyn Evans in the back, and some very nice black-and-white photographs.”
COLLECTOR, founder of the k11 art foundation
“I recommend seeing Trevor Shimizu’s painting Cows Chickens Birds, which is a remarkable example of artistic expression,” Adrian Cheng, founder of the K11 Art Foundation (currently hosting a bar with Frieze and ICA), said of the work on view at 47 Canal. “Shimizu has a fantastic way of adding dynamism and life to banal scenes with his fast-paced paint application and opposing colors.”
His other highlight, by Chinese artist Guan Xiao, is shown by Shanghai-based gallery Antenna Space. “Guan Xiao’s documentary has been specially made for Frieze London and is well worth a visit,” he said. Of particular interest to Cheng are Guan’s patterned screens—the one on display, the third in an edition of three, is priced at $35,000 and had a hold early on opening day. “I like the way her patterned screens play with nature, fashion, and identity, and draw on Chinese traditions.”
Nadia and Rajeeb Samdani
COLLECTORs, founders of the samdani art foundation
Among other favorite works, including Daniel Steegmann Mangrané’s dizzying, spinning table at Esther Schipper, Camille Henrot’s nude sculpture centerpiece at kamel mennour, and a painting by Prabhavathi Meppayil at Pace, they call out Waqas Khan’s giant ink-on-paper drawing at Galerie Krinzinger: “This is a young artist to look out for.”
“You’re always running around trying to discover while everyone else is trying to push you out of the way,” said London-based collector Kamiar Maleki. Favorites from opening day include Samara Scott at The Sunday Painter, Ida Ekblad at Herald St, Malike Kara at Peres Projects, and Neil Beloufa (spotted in the back room at Mendes Wood DM). And of his last highlight, Harold Ancart’s solo presentation at C L E A R I N G, he says: “They all sold immediately, in the first minutes of the fair.”