Advertisement
Art Market

What Sold at Frieze New York 2022

Brian P. Kelly
May 23, 2022 4:26PM

David Zwirner’s presentation of Varol Bove’s sculptures at Frieze New York. © Carol Bove. Courtesy the artist and David Zwirner.

An unusually warm Sunday seemed to mark both the unofficial start of New York’s summer and the end of its hectic spring art calendar. This period saw the opening of the latest Whitney Biennial, booming sales at the major auction houses, a smattering of notable gallery shows, the inaugural New York Art Week, and, capstoning it all, Frieze New York.

The marquee fair returned to its new Hudson Yards home, taking over the Diller Scofidio + Renfro–designed The Shed for the second year in a row. The new venue marks a smaller fair than the version hosted on Randall’s Island. This year’s outing featured more than 65 exhibitors—a slight increase over 2021, when some were sidelined by concerns or policies related to COVID-19—but that remains a far cry from the 160-some galleries that used to set up shop in the fair’s iconic white tent on the island.

But while a staffer at one mega-gallery was sheepish in admitting that they missed the old experience—“Hot take, I know,” they laughed—most of those working the event praised the revamped Frieze for its more focused scale and convenient location.

Daniel Arsham, Veiled Porsche, 2022. Photo by Guillaume Ziccarelli. Courtesy of the artist and Perrotin.

Advertisement

Beyond cementing the success of the fair’s new setting, however, this edition of Frieze New York also seemed to mark the full realization of what the “new normal” is when it comes to fairgoing in a world with endemic COVID. Though masking was still required and cases in New York continued to creep up, neither seemed to dampen the exuberance of the crowd, especially on opening day. As Perrotin’s New York partner Peggy Leboeuf said, “While fairs have been back for a while now, this one felt like the first one back in full pre-pandemic force.”

That force was fully evident in the gallery’s sales: Its opening-day booth sold out, and it continued to make sales throughout the run of the fair totaling over $3 million, including works by Daniel Arsham, Cristina BanBan, Bharti Kher, Nikki Maloof, Danielle Orchard, and Paola Pivi going to a mix of new collectors and existing clients from the U.S. and abroad.

If that list of artists seems particularly female-centric, it’s because Frieze New York was dominated by women artists of all stripes, established and emerging, working across a variety of mediums. At the brightest—and arguably most Instagrammed—booth at the fair, David Zwirner sold out its solo presentation of new sculptures by Carol Bove in the early hours of opening day. The twisted, crushed, coral orange steel tubing, hung on walls draped in a matching-colored fabric or placed on Ettore Sottsass–designed tables, were priced from $200,000–$600,000.

Mai-Thu Perret, Diana, 2022. Photo by Mareike Tocha. Courtesy of David Kordansky Gallery, Los Angeles.

Mai-Thu Perret, By lamplight in the inner chamber they speak of deception and revenge, 2019. Photo by Mareike Tocha. Courtesy of David Kordansky Gallery, Los Angeles.

Other notable sales of work by female creators include the following:

  • Mai-Thu Perret’s whimsical, classically influenced ceramic sculptures, wall-based works, and watercolors impressed at David Kordansky Gallery’s solo presentation of the Swiss-born artist, including her Diana (2022). Perret’s ceramic pieces went for $20,000–$90,000, while the watercolors fetched $5,000–$20,000. Director Anna Fisher said by email, “The sales at this year’s fair reveal the depth of excitement buzzing about Perret’s oeuvre—we’re looking forward to furthering the conversation about Perret’s remarkable work in her upcoming exhibitions at our Los Angeles gallery in 2023 and our New York gallery in 2024.”
  • In its solo presentation of Joan Snyder, Franklin Parrasch Gallery sold work in the region of $375,000.

Latifa Echakhch, Night Time (As Seen by Sim Ouch) 2022. © Latifa Echakhch. Courtesy of Pace Gallery.

  • Four of Latifa Echakhch’s large-scale, acrylic-on-concrete canvases depicting party scenes in her solo booth at Pace sold in the range of €120,000–€180,000 ($127,000–$191,000). The Moroccan-born, Swiss-based artist’s work is also currently on view at the Swiss pavilion of the Venice Biennale.
  • Tina Kim Gallery represented the full range of its program, introducing American audiences to lesser-known international creators and movements, both historic and contemporary, with a special emphasis on Asian art. Sales included work by Tania Pérez Córdova ($14,000–$16,000), Pacita Abad ($14,000–$200,000), Minouk Lim ($40,000–$50,000), and Suki Seokyeong Kang ($15,000–$20,000). The pieces sold to a mostly local collector base, according to a gallery representative, and went to a mix of new and existing clients.
Pacita Abad
Weeping woman, 1985
Tina Kim Gallery
Huma Bhabha
Untitled, 2021
Xavier Hufkens
Tracey Emin
In my defence - I thought of only you, 2017
Xavier Hufkens

Xavier Hufkens sold works on paper by Huma Bhabha in the range of $28,000–$60,000; a sculpture by Louise Bourgeois for $145,000; and several works by Tracey Emin, including paintings, gouaches, and neon pieces, all in the range of £55,000–£400,000 ($69,000–$502,000). The Brussels-based gallery’s fortune not only represented the strong sales of female artists at this edition of the fair, but also highlighted the success that international galleries enjoyed.

It’s no surprise that Frieze New York is a global event in every sense of the word, but last year, several galleries weren’t able to attend due to various COVID-related issues including worries about case numbers, travel restrictions, and attention focused on other pandemic-related priorities. While not every gallery that lacks a U.S. outpost was returning to Frieze for the first time, there was a decidedly cosmopolitan feel to this year’s fair compared to last.

Yoo Geun Taek
In the Garden , 2021
Gallery Hyundai

International galleries with notable sales include the following:

  • Seoul-based Gallery Hyundai sold works by Yoo Geun-Taek in the range of $40,000–$50,000; Minjung Kim priced from $50,000–$150,000; Lee Kun-Yong ranging from $150,000–$200,000; Seung-taek Lee in the range of $100,000–$200,000; and Yun-Hee Toh in the range of $50,000–$70,000.
  • At Thaddaeus Ropac, which has spaces in London, Paris, Salzburg, and Seoul, a 2021 work by Georg Baselitz and two paintings by Alex Katz took top sales spots, selling for €1.2 million ($1.28 million) and $700,000 apiece, respectively. The gallery also sold a painting by Tom Sachs at $250,000, and a work by Rachel Jones went to an American institution for £75,000 ($94,000). Thaddaeus Ropac was one of many galleries that was especially effusive about the new iteration of Frieze New York, praising its smaller, more manageable size.
McArthur Binion
dna:study, 2022
MASSIMODECARLO

And while galleries from outside the U.S. generally threw their weight around with big-ticket works from household-name artists, a few adventurous, younger spaces offered more approachable price points. This was especially true at the fair’s Frame section, which features solo presentations of emerging artists from galleries that opened in or after 2012. For example, Capsule Shanghai sold eight paintings by Xinyue Yan, with seven ranging in price from $2,500–$5,000 and the other going for $15,000.

This year’s Frame presentations, though limited in number (11 exhibitors), were outsized in their impact. In addition to showing some of the most provocative work at the fair, the section serves a key role in simultaneously elevating the profiles of smaller spaces and rising artists while offering an inviting on-ramp to collecting for new buyers. While dedicated sections like Frame are now present at most major fairs, it’s important that they continue to be highlighted since they serve a vital role in rejuvenating the art ecosystem of buyers, sellers, and creators.

Among the other notable sales at Frame include the following:

  • Château Shatto, a Los Angeles–based space, sold out its booth of eight works by Emma McIntyre. The abstract oil-on-linen pieces, suffused with the colors of spring blooms and summer sunsets, were priced from $4,000–$26,000 and, according to a fair press representative, “were placed with museum patrons between Los Angeles, Dallas, and New York, with one major work being a promised gift to a Northeastern museum.”
  • New York gallery Lubov presented works by Marsha Pels that meditate on death and loss. The centerpiece of the show, Dead Cowboy (2007–08)—a skeletal motorcycle created after the artist’s partner left her unexpectedly—sold for $40,000.
  • Leo Felipe, director of São Paulo’s , could hardly contain his excitement throughout the fair—even on Sunday, when most other exhibitors were showing signs of fatigue after a week of installation, socializing, and sales—effusing about the opportunity to introduce the gallery to a U.S. audience. All of the booth’s contemporary surrealistic paintings by Rebecca Sharp sold, mostly to American collectors, with prices ranging from $7,000–$8,500.

Marsha Pels, Dead Cowboy, 2007–08. Courtesy the artist and Lubov.

Universally, the mood at Frieze New York was upbeat, with galleries reporting strong sales. While the latter is certainly the norm at these sorts of events—no space wants to admit to having a sluggish fair—here, dealers seemed to truly mean it, with the numbers backing them up. Victoria Miro, for example, sold more than 20 works (with one going for $2.8 million) by artists including Yayoi Kusama, Alice Neel, Flora Yuknovich, and Doron Langberg. Powerhouse Hauser & Wirth sold out its solo booth of pioneering African American conceptual artist Charles Gaines on the first day; his five large works went for $550,000 each. At James Cohan, eight mystical, geometric paintings by Eamon Ore-Giron sold for a total of $353,000.

While the fair scene will doubtlessly continue to evolve as the global community further adapts to the realities of living with COVID-19 for the foreseeable future, Frieze New York felt largely like a turning point. Last year’s edition, the first major fair to return after the outbreak of the pandemic, marked an important milestone in a return to normalcy. This year feels like we’ve taken a full step into the future.

Brian P. Kelly

Thumbnail image, from left to right: Latifa Echakhch, “Night Time (As Seen by Sim Ouch),” 2022. © Latifa Echakhch. Courtesy of Pace Gallery. Mai-Thu Perret, “Diana,” 2022. Photo by Mareike Tocha. Courtesy of David Kordansky Gallery, Los Angeles.