If you are walking around at London's Frieze Art Fair 09 you have the feeling that the first wave of the art market tsunami is over. Yet, nobody is sure if that was really all of it. There is a sense of back to business as usual - and more regular too:
The booths are not sold out 30 minutes after the VIP-preopening.
The works of art don't cost double the price of last year.
I think this is a healthy development for each market, also for the art market.
The collectors - not the speculators - are still buying. Some are even buying again, as they couldn't afford anymore the over-hyped prices of the last years.
Peres Projects of Los Angeles and Berlin showed a good collage by Dash Snow, who unfortunately died this summer from an overdose. The piece consisted of an old black and white group photo. Snow cut all the faces out of it and piled the heads in front of the group. It was offered for € 35,000. I like it.
At the VIP reception I met Grayson Perry, the Turner-prize-winning artist of 2003 (or rather his female alter-ego 'Claire'). He showed me his new work, the large-scale 'Walthamstow Tapestry'. It depicts the stages of a man's life from birth to death. As a critique to consumerism, he contrasts these images by small brand names and scenes of modern life. Perry did the design of the tapestry and then had it made by a Belgian company. There are two sizes: 15 x 3 meters in an edition of 3 for GBP 150,000 and 7 x 1, 4 m in an edition of 12 for GBP 48,000. One of the 15 meter pieces already had been bought by architect Norman Foster for his private collection.
There was a nice Sigmar Polke painting 'With Potemkin through the Villages' for € 2,250,000 at the booth of Michael Werner, NY.