Frieze Art Fair at Regent’s Park
Frieze Art Fair is back for its 11th year this weekend at Regent’s Park, where the “world’s leading contemporary art galleries” from 30 countries are exhibiting their most impressive and proudest features. Each of the 152 galleries has its own temporary mini-gallery space to display an array of sculptures, and the whole is divided in two areas: Focus collates galleries that have been established for up to ten years, while Frame exhibits solo shows by artists represented by younger galleries.
The busy art fair experience is exhausting both physically (in the abundance of works on display), and mentally, with the art’s primary purpose to be sold. The three well-built security guards shielding Jeff Koons’ kitsch, shiny sculptures (which fetch millions of dollars at auctions) at the Gagosian Gallery are an uneasy addition – an example of the depressing or hilarious result of the art-for-money equation that is most dominant at art fairs.
However, this thought aside, visitors can appreciate the quality and diversity of the art found in certain galleries. Hauser and Wirth’s display Woman with Shopping is a highlight piece that draws inquisitive eyes with its shrunken but bewildering realism, and is as instantly recognisable as Ron Mueck’s work. Project 88 from India’s exhibit of the Otolith Group’s deeply engaging film essay, People to Be Resembling (documenting the “post-free jazz, pre-world music trio Codona”) is similarly engaging.
Elsewhere, Jennifer Rubell’s Portrait of the Artist is a strong work that plays against the classicism of the male form in a sculpture of the artist nude that is enormous enough for a visitor to playfully crawl into and curl up in its womb. The artist calls the work both “feminine and feminist” and it is one of the very few pieces at the fair that is interactive.
Also within the Frieze programme, this year’s Sculpture Park is the largest exhibit on display, and new works by renowned contemporary sculptors are displayed alongside Frieze Masters’ choices as old as the medieval period. In addition, the Frieze Projects, Frieze Music, Frieze Film and Frieze Talks further prove the phenomenon to be more artistically expressive in a variety of outlets than just another ridiculously expensive, white-walled art fair.
Photos: Alessio Paratore
Frieze Art Fair is at Regent’s Park until 20th October 2013. For further information visit the fair’s website here.