In 2003, the Frieze art fair debuted in London’s Regent’s Park, initially surprising locals. Over time, it evolved into a defining event in the city’s cultural calendar.
Galleries from global art hubs gathered beneath an expansive marquee designed by architect David Adjaye, marking the inception of a significant art affair. Since then, Frieze has grown into a platform for exhibitions, auctions, live events, and franchises.
Founders Matthew Slotover and Amanda Sharp, former editors of the ‘Frieze’ art magazine, took a bold step in launching the fair. Riding on the momentum of Tate Modern’s 2000 opening, Frieze swiftly became the go-to destination for fresh artistic perspectives, attracting a diverse audience.
From its inception, Frieze pioneered novel experiences through expansive citywide collaborations and public endeavors like the striking Frieze Sculpture. Its impact resonates globally, transforming local art markets and cultivating a fresh wave of collectors.
Frieze’s influence is not confined to London. The platform initiated a series of influential fairs, with subsequent editions in New York, Los Angeles, and Seoul, strategically chosen for their vibrant artistic ecosystems and thriving cultural landscapes.
Beyond a traditional trade fair, Frieze transformed into a dynamic space for commissions, an educational hub, and a nexus for the diverse arts community.
London, despite facing challenges from Brexit and COVID-19, has reemerged as a powerhouse in the European art scene. The UK market rebounded in 2022 with a 10 percent revenue growth driven by strong auction sales.
While Paris has seen a resurgence, it has not yet translated into market dominance. The Art Basel/UBS Art Market Report indicates the UK now holds a 16 percent share in sales, surpassing France’s 8 percent. How about sales at Frieze London?
The fair featured a diverse range of artists and attracted collectors from various regions, with prices for artworks ranging from $50,000 to $3 million.
At David Zwirner, noteworthy sales included a painting by Gerhard Richter for $650,000, bronze sculptures by Josh Smith for $600,000 and $200,000, and works by other artists like Rose Wylie, Oscar Murillo, Shio Kusaka, and Frank Walter, ranging from $35,000 to $400,000.
Hauser & Wirth’s standout sale was a Louise Bourgeois sculpture for $3 million, and a Jack Whitten painting titled Atlantis Rising sold for $950,000.
Lehmann Maupin’s notable sales included a $300,000 sculptural wall work by Teresita Fernández and a copper panel work by Nari Ward for $250,000.
Pace reported a $2 million sale of a Louise Nevelson sculpture, as well as sales of pieces by Paulina Olowska and Adam Pendleton.
Thaddaeus Ropac saw success with works by artists like Georg Baselitz, Mandy El-Sayegh, and Martha Jungwirth, with prices ranging from €75,000 to €1.2 million.
Clearing: Marguerite Humeau, renowned for her interdisciplinary approach blending science, history, and mythology, condenses her 160-acre earthwork in Colorado’s San Luis Valley into a 50 sqm space. It features 80 wind-activated kinetic sculptures, paying tribute to local nature. Wall-hung pieces capture Orisons’ essence.
Hauser & Wirth: Barbara Chase-Riboud’s solo booth features her distinctive bronze sculptures, “Standing Black Women of Venice,” towering at eight feet tall. These abstract representations pay homage to ancient female poets Vijja, Praxilla, and Nossis, with a surface texture inspired by the artist’s earlier floor work.
Nature Morte: The standout for the gallery from New Delhi is Sagarika Sundaram’s “Siren,” a hand-felted piece using locally sourced, dyed natural fiber. Suhasini Kejriwal’s cacti sculptures, “The Garden of Un-Earthly Delights,” adorned with plant and bird drawings, share space with a bronze tree sculpture with wide-eyed leaves, offering a surreal view of nature.
Peres Projects: London painter Cece Philips’ large oil canvases, bathed in blues and yellows, depict night scenes with a unique sense of detachment. “Lucky Eyes” showcases this, featuring confident socialization in a well-lit living room against a blue twilight backdrop.
Pilar Corrias: Sophie von Hellermann’s solo booth is a standout at the art fair. Her vibrant, dreamlike creations transform the sterile walls with sweeping strokes of purples, mauves, and blues, complemented by a custom-designed colorful carpet. The nine new paintings draw inspiration from the century-old Dreamland amusement park in Margate.
The Sunday Painter: Tyra Tingleff displays striking, towering canvases inspired by nature. Renowned British artist Nicholas Pope reveals a 32-part ceramic sculpture exploring familial psychology. His Frieze-exclusive piece delves into human complexity, highlighting art’s power in representing individuals.
Timothy Taylor: The booth features works by American painter Eddie Martinez, showcasing his creative process through collaged scribbles on the walls. These drawings, displaying single or mixed colors, trace Martinez’s ideas from sketches to his signature bold, expressive paintings.