Frieze London Opens Friday

The sixteenth edition of Frieze London and the seventh edition of Frieze Masters opens to the public on Friday, October 5, with preview days on October 3 and October 4. Featuring 160 galleries from around the world, Frieze London will boast of a new Social Work section, the presentation of nine artists’ interactive and performance-based works as part of its Live platform, and a new Emerging Artist Prize in collaboration with Camden Arts Centre.

Returning to Frieze London are a score of international galleries that have participated since the fair’s inception in 2003, including Galerie Gisela Capitain, Gagosian Gallery, Greene Naftali, Hauser & Wirth, Lisson Gallery, Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, Salon 94, Sprüth Magers, White Cube, and David Zwirner. Other participating galleries include Marian Goodman Gallery, kurimanzutto, Matthew Marks Gallery, kamel mennour, Pace Gallery, Esther Schipper, and the Box. Exhibiting alongside them will be several venues making their fair debut, such as Xavier Hufkens, Galerie Lelong & Co., and Galleri Nicolai Wallner.

Commenting on the latest edition, Frieze London artistic director Jo Stella-Sawicka said: “Frieze London programming evolves this year, shaped by new curators and urgent political realities. One hundred years since women gained the vote in the UK, Frieze London will use its international platform to respond to the fact that women artists are still under-represented in the art world and especially the market. It’s been an honor to collaborate with ten of the country’s leading minds on the subject, to shape this year’s themed section, Social Work.”

Showcasing women artists who challenged the status quo and explored the possibilities of political activism in their artmaking during the 1980s and ’90s, the Social Work section will highlight the work of artists such as Nancy Spero from the US, Berni Searle from South Africa, Ipek Duben from Turkey, and Helen Chadwick from the UK.

Joining the fair this year are several new curators, including Diana Campbell Betancourt, who organized Frieze’s Projects section, which includes the Live platform, the Film program, and the Frieze Artist Award. In addition, Andrew Bonacina, chief curator of Hepworth Wakefield, and Laura McLean-Ferris, curator of the Swiss Institute, advised emerging galleries in the Focus section, and Matthew McLean, senior editor of Frieze Studios, and Lydia Yee, chief curator of the Whitechapel Gallery in London, served as co-programmers of Frieze Talks.

Frieze’s Live platform will stage performances and interactive installations that explore hidden formulas that impact wider social, political, and economic realities, including Liz Glynn’s interactive dance performance, which responds to live data at the fair; Julia Scher’s roaming security guards and surveillance installation; and Pratchaya Phinthong’s exchange of counterfeit currency, which reveals the value that politics places on people. Frieze Artist Award winner Alex Baczynski-Jenkins will also stage a performance engaging with queer relationality and the politics of desire.

Frieze Talks will explore the role of autobiography in art with participants such as Laurie Anderson, Nan Goldin, Kemang Wa Lehulere, and Olivia Laing; and Frieze Film will question natural, technological, and psychological means of mass communication and control with new works by Paul Pfeiffer, Lucy Raven, and the London-based collective the Otolith Group.

The fair will also launch its Camden Arts Centre Emerging Artist Prize, which will offer an emerging artist participating in the fair’s Focus section the opportunity to mount an exhibition at London’s Camden Arts Centre. The inaugural recipient will be selected by a panel comprising Martin Clark, director of Camden Arts Centre; Gina Buenfeld; Sophie Williamson, program and exhibitions curator at Camden Arts Centre; and Joe Hill, director of the UK’s Towner Art Gallery.