Island escape: W*’s handpicked highlights from Frieze New York 2016

Island escape: W*’s handpicked highlights from Frieze New York 2016

Thousands of dealers, collectors, journalists and other VIPs made the trek by ferry, car or bus through frigid temperatures and constant drizzle to Randall’s Island on 4 May for the invitation-only preview of Frieze New York. The fifth edition of the fair featured more than 130 galleries from 26 countries in the main section. With an overwhelmingly large amount of space to cover, visitors darted back and forth between the aisles.

Some visitors were in for a surprise treat, with artist David Horvitz and his team of roving reverse pickpockets depositing small artworks into random fairgoers’ bags as part of Frieze Projects. Maurizio Cattelan paid homage to the shuttered 1980s and 90s downtown space of Daniel Newburg Gallery, by restaging ’Enter at Your Own Risk’, a portrait of the artist as a young ass made manifest as a donkey in a pen beneath a chandelier. Meanwhile, Maharam Serpentine Galleries Wallpaper made a return to the fair, as patterns by Marc Camille Chaimowicz, Beatriz González and John Baldessari decorated the north entrance, south entrance, and El Rey and Roberta’s restaurants.

Booth highlights include Cologne-based Galerie Gisela Capitain, which took the Stand Prize, for an exhibition that was centred around Günther Förg’s last painting before his death in 2013. ’We wanted to focus on Günther Förg’s idea of wall paintings, and we then tried to make a booth which reacts to this, so we have a symmetrical architecture and layout,’ said the gallery’s namesake, Gisela Capitain.

Katherine Bernhardt took over Canada Gallery’s booth, which was covered in piles of colourful, Moroccan rugs and featured the artist’s work alongside pieces by Sadie Laska and Alicia Gibson. Over at Andrea Rosen, a mirrored installation featuring cracked glass and beguiling sculptures by David Altmejd intrigued many visitors. At The Breeder, Angelo Plessas reconfigured 3D geometric shapes from the website for the booth. ’My work oscillates between online and offline,’ he said.

Despina Stokou’s Langrangian spelled out an endless mathematical equation at Derek Eller. At the shared Seoul-based Kukje Gallery and New York-based Tina Kim Gallery’s booth, Kyungah Ham’s embroidered chandelier piece carried a political tone; it was covertly stitched together by North Korean seamstresses who included messages in their needlework. Meanwhile, Mitchell-Innes & Nash, which just announced the representation of Monica Bonvicini, showed off eight of her works, including the cheeky So Male, So Male, a red neon piece that played on the gender and the Italian meaning of male (bad). Finally, Altman Siegel’s solo booth of Matt Keegan cutouts made for a graphic display.

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