Wednesday, October 15, 2008

London Frieze Art Fair


Although its moniker refers to an ancient art form, London’s Frieze Art Fair, staging its sixth run in Regent’s Park from October 16 through 19, is a high-glam gathering of the world’s edgiest and most influential contemporary-art galleries. Along with a solid presence of American, European and Japanese exhibitors among the 150 dealers on hand, there is strong representation from the fast-expanding markets of Brazil, China, India and Russia.

Beijing’s Long March Space, one of nine newcomers, is bringing work by two Chinese artists: Lin Tianmiao, whose mannequinlike figures encased in luminescent materials sell for $80,000 and up, and Guo Fengyi, who draws complex compositions of historic sites and human biological systems that are priced at about $12,000 each. São Paulo’s Galeria Vermelho features the work of the Brazilian-born duo Angela Detanico and Rafael Lain, whose collaborative installations, objects and videos investigate the forms and systems of language and are priced from $5,000.

“The Frieze fair, with its devotion to living artists, has a real freshness to it,” says Alex Dodge, of New York’s CRG Gallery, which is displaying a mix of sculpture and photography by emerging artists Colby Bird, O Zhang and Mindy Shapero with price tags under $10,000. New color photographs by Cindy Sherman exploring notions of self-image and beauty— familiar themes for Sherman— are priced between $150,000 and $250,000 at the booth of New York’s Metro Pictures. The Cuban-born artist Wilfredo Prieto is Frieze’s 2008 Cartier Award winner. Known for installations that recontextualize everyday objects, Prieto has created a work for the fair composed of more than 100 oil drums. “Frieze is unique,” says David Tung, of Long March Space, “for its role as a marketplace not only for artworks but for ideas.”

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