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Frieze Plays a Double in Regent's Park, London

The booth of Richard L. Feigen, NYC, at Frieze Masters; Frieze Masters 2012 (c)Photograph by Linda Nylind Courtesy of Linda Nylind/ Frieze

Just like every October, the global art circus gathers also this year in London for the 10th edition of Frieze Art Fair.


There is an interesting development: Earlier this year, Frieze launched Frieze New York and now they have a second tent at Regent’s Park: ‘Frieze Masters’ with all sorts of art and antiques from Stone Age up to the year 2000.


Frieze Masters looks a lot like the elegant TEFAF in Maastricht, but without the flower decoration. Due to a rigid vetting committee the quality of the works at Frieze Masters was very high and quite comparable to TEFAF.



Works by Alexander Calder at the booth of Helly Nahmad Gallery; (c) Frieze Masters 2012 Photograph by Linda Nylind Courtesy of Linda Nylind/ Frieze


Clearly, Frieze wants to encourage the cross selling of older art to contemporary collectors. For years, many of these antiques dealers looked with envy at the high price increases of contemporary art. I think a collector of contemporary art is likely to buy a modern classic, like a Calder, rather then a medieval Madonna sculpture.



Grayson Perry: The Adoration of the Cage Fighters (2012), at the booth of Victoria Miro, London, Frieze London 2012 (c) the artist, Photograph by Linda Nylind Courtesy of Linda Nylind/ Frieze


At the opening it was obvious that there were more and more collectors form the Americas. Especially from booming Brazil, but there were also many US collectors coming back to London.



Anri Sala, Clocked Perspective (2012) Frieze London 2012 The Sculpture Park (c) the artists, Photograph by Linda Nylind Courtesy of Linda Nylind/ Frieze


I really liked the sculpture park, which was curated by Claire Lilley. There you could also buy the wonderful clock piece by the Albanian artist Anri Sala, which was installed at Documenta's Karlsaue park before.



Andreas Lolis, 21st Century Relics Composition in 9 parts, 2012, marble, installation dimensions 170x280x118cm, installation view at Frieze Sculpture Park, London 2012, (c) the artist, courtesy The Breeder Gallery, Athens

Greek artist Andreas Lolis had an excellent installation at Frieze Sculputure Park: '21st Century Relics Composition in 9 parts' of 2012. It looked like empty carbord boxes and other thrown away wrappings of consumer products. But they were all made of the classic Greek marterial marble. A perfect comment about the sad situation in Greece today!



A work by Andreas Gursky, Dubai World II (2007) White Cube, London, (c) the artists Frieze London 2012 Photograph by Linda Nylind Courtesy of Linda Nylind/ Frieze


Frieze New York was quite boring to me, as the usual suspects showed up with their usual artists. It seems to be a sad fact that the art market, such as the luxury brand market, is more and more dominated by globally operating dealers with their similar brand name products. At Frieze there is also a section for the younger galleries, but for years it had been a lot less appealing to me than Art Basel or Liste Basel or Volta.


I have the feeling, in the long run Frieze will need fresh art or it will itself become Frieze Old Master.


By Chris Neuschler



Frieze Art Fair and Frieze Masters both at Regent’s Park, London, UK

Through 14th October 2012




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