Running until 6 October 2019, Frieze London brings together more than 160 galleries from 35 countries, representing the fair’s most international edition since its launch. Under the direction of Victoria Siddall, this year’s fair introduces new curators and sections showcasing performance, emerging artists and the contemporary significance of complex art genealogies. Exploring all on offer at Frieze London 2019, Something Curated highlights ten must-see exhibits.
Hannah Levy || Casey Kaplan (Booth F7)
New York gallery Casey Kaplan presents a new series of sculptures by Hannah Levy. At once sleek, comic, and menacing, the combination of silicone and steel has become a signature of Levy’s. Stretched panels of a pale jade-toned silicone, cast with the texture of ostrich skin, are tautly fitted around shiny metal armatures, supported by sharp claws and talons. These sculptures suggest tropes of furniture or other design objects that are mysteriously coming to life, or harbouring it. Bodies are always present in some form but never entirely, with only hints of the corporal.
Urara Tsuchiya || Union Pacific (H1 Focus)
Japanese artist Urara Tsuchiya has transformed London gallery Union Pacific’s Frieze booth into a peculiar hotel room, replete with bedside tables and a television. Everything has been given a surreal twist, with furniture used to display ceramic pieces by Tsuchiya, including a pair of decorated lamps, and bowls filled with graphic and comical scenes of bestiality. Several relief works cover the walls, apparently inspired by the dreams of those who might stay in the room, while the TV plays a video Tsuchiya filmed for the project.
Oliver Laric || Metro Pictures (Booth F5)
Berlin-based artist Oliver Laric works at the intersection between art and technology. His multifaceted approach responds to the internet as a mass media with deep and wide cultural reach, exploring how images have been created, shared, and repeated, both in our time and across history. Laric identifies historical sculptures with rich histories and replicates them using 3D technology. On display at Metro Pictures’ booth is Laric’s Reclining Pan, a copy of a 16th-century sculpture on view at Saint Louis Art Museum. By replicating works, Laric destabilises ideas of past and present, original and copy, and authentic and inauthentic.
Charlie Billingham || Travesía Cuatro (Booth G1)
A highlight of Travesía Cuatro’s booth is the work of British painter Charlie Billingham. The artist takes imagery from Regency-era satirical prints and drawings, cropping and distorting sections to create new compositions, devoid of the intended political and social meanings of the original illustrations. A rainbow of powdered wigs, sagging britches and swollen bellies dance across his paintings. The canvases are hung on a block printed wall painting, alongside colourful glazed pots and houseplants, creating a sense of a decorative, domestic interior.
Austin Lee || Peres Projects (Booth D1)
Berlin-based gallery Peres Projects’ Frieze booth includes a new sculptural work by American artist Austin Lee. RELAXGUY, 2019 was first rendered in virtual reality and then created in its physical form through 3D printing. Lee’s impetus for making art capitalises on his obsession with a digitally and technologically advancing world, the impact this has on contemporary culture, society, politics, and how it affects the way we look at art. Lee asks the viewer to question the relationship between digital manipulation and physical experience.
Rolf Nowotny || Christian Andersen (H13 Focus)
Copenhagen gallery Christian Andersen hosts a solo presentation of Danish artist Rolf Nowotny, entitled dementia (mildew exteriors). Nowotny’s approach is one of curiosity, manifesting itself in objects that confront the viewer with a recognisable, yet somewhat strange, physical reality. The exhibit’s highlight comprises a series of floor-installed sculptural works, which appear like strange remnants of some kind of casting process, peeled away from their original place of rest and positioned on Frieze’s temporary carpeting.
Julien Creuzet || High Art (H3 Focus)
Winner of the Camden Arts Centre Emerging Artist Prize for High Art’s presentation of his work at Frieze London, artist Julien Creuzet was born in Paris and grew up in Martinique, a remote Caribbean island that’s part of the Lesser Antilles. A visual artist and poet, Creuzet actively intertwines these practices through sculpture, installation and textual intervention that frequently address his own diasporic experience. Inspired by the poetic and philosophical reflections of Aimé Césaire and Édouard Glissant on creolisation and migration, Creuzet’s work focuses on the troubled intersection of the history of Martinique and the events of European modernity.
Sam Lipp || Bodega (H32 Focus)
In his work, NYC-based artist and co-founder of gallery Queer Thoughts, Sam Lipp, explores notions of identity in a way that moves beyond the peripheries of gender and class. His paintings are often built up in acrylic, labour intensively, using steel wool. Whilst many of his images, including text pieces, are direct in their content, overtly dealing with prohibitive structures of civic life, his more abstract pieces act as junctions, like signposts or hoardings emptied of intention, which offer the viewer some kind of agency.
Donna Huanca || Simon Lee Gallery (Booth E6)
Simon Lee Gallery presents a solo exhibition of works by Berlin-based, Bolivian American artist Donna Huanca. At the heart of Huanca’s interdisciplinary practice is an exploration of the human body and its relationship to space and identity. Huanca’s paintings are fundamentally linked to the performative elements of her oeuvre. Photographs of her performers’ decorated bodies are blown up and transposed to canvas, where they are re-worked with paint. Gesture is enlarged and amplified; the soundlessness of her performances reverberates across her abstract compositions.
Yto Barrada || Sfeir-Semler Gallery (Booth G10)
Yto Barrada was born in 1971 in Paris but grew up in Tangier, Morocco. She studied history and political science at the Sorbonne and photography in New York. At Frieze, Beirut and Hamburg-based gallery Sfeir-Semler are presenting one of Barrada’s striking suspended mobile works made of adjoined woven baskets, similar to those shown at the Barbican’s Curve gallery last year. The Moroccan artist’s practice spans a wide range of media including photography, sculpture, installation, textile, and video.
Feature image: Oliver Laric, Reclining Pan, 2018 at Metro Pictures, Booth F5. (Photo via Saint Louis Art Museum)