Frieze Art Fair: 7 Things Not to Be Missed

Frieze Art Fair: 7 Things Not to Be Missed

By Sara Carpenter
The Frieze Art Fair made quite the first impression last spring when it hopped the pond for its inaugural New York exhibition. Ever since, we’ve been jonesin’ to get back in the massive snaking tent by architecture firm SO-IL to check out contemporary art from around the globe. Over 180 galleries will be taking part in the four-day fair, making the journey to Randall’s Island well worth its while. With so much to see, picking a route through the grounds might be daunting, so to help you get a leg up on it, we’ve put together a list of seven things not to be missed. Frieze New York takes place May 10 – 13, 2013, on Randall’s Island. For more information, click here.

SO-IL Tent

An exciting entry to a sea of art. Frieze New York, 2012. Photograph by Graham Carlow. Courtesy of Graham Carlow/Frieze.

It would be impossible to miss the 1,500 foot long tent that houses the fair, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take a moment to appreciate it as a piece of art itself. Back for a second year, the prefab modular 250,000 square-foot tent structure was designed by art world darlings SO-IL (in addition to Frieze, they’ve worked with the Whitney, MoMA PS1, and the Guggenheim) to retain the scenic views offered by its location. In addition to bringing the tent its curves, pie-shaped insertions break up the monotony of the structure and create areas of diversion. The north and south entrances were ornamented with strips of the roof fabric, whetting visitors’ appetites for the art held within. Photograph by Iwan Baan. Courtesy of Iwan Baan/ Frieze.

The white tent by SO-IL has an impressive presence from above. Frieze New York, 2012. Photograph by Iwan Baan. Courtesy of Iwan Baan/ Frieze.

Liz Glynn’s Speakeasy

A past installation by Liz Glynn, BLACKBOX (Bar) in 2012. Stained wood, one hundred unique numbered glazed ceramic mugs, 11 stools, Xerox copies, and acrylic. Photograph by Calvin LeeCourtesy of LAXART and the Getty Research Institute.

Gaining access to Liz Glynn’s hidden speakeasy installation might require persistence, but it will pay off. Frieze reps will be handing out keys at random to fair-goers, granting them access to a space constructed by the artist to resemble a 1920s prohibition-era speakeasy. Bartenders will serve bespoke cocktails to those lucky enough to find themselves behind an old bank vault entryway.

Tina Girouard, Carol Goodden, and Gordon Matta-Clark outside the restaurant FOOD prior to its opening in 1971. Goodden will be one of the artists participating as a chef in the 2013 homage to the original. Photograph by Richard Landry. Courtesy Richard Landry, the Estate of Gordon Matta-Clark and David Zwirner, New York/London.

Food, Food and more Food

Maria Loboda’s installation at Frieze will utilize topiary as seen in an earlier work,The bad boys of Harvard, 2011. Topiary. Photo courtesy of the artist and Schleicher/Lange.

With so much art to see, you’ll need fortification. Frieze went above and beyond in their culinary efforts, enlisting a roster of restaurants that will make it hard to decide what’s for lunch: Court Street Grocers, Frankies Spuntino, Prime Meats, Marlow & Sons (in the VIP room!), Mission Chinese Food, Roberta’s, Sant Ambroeus and The Fat Radish will all have outposts on the grounds. And when the inevitable food coma sets in, Blue Bottle Coffee will be at the ready with a caffeinated pick-me-up.

Marianne Vitale’s weathervane-centric piece for Frieze will be a departure from past work. Burned Bridge (Montreuil), 2012. Reclaimed lumber. Photograph by Pierre Antoine, courtesy of the artist.

And for good measure, more Food 1971/2013

As part of Frieze Projects, Food, the renowned restaurant by Gordon Matta-Clark and Carol Goodden, will be recreated in collaboration with a rotating cast of artists (including some of the artists who partnered with the 1971 original). The menu and artist-cum-chef will change daily while the temporary restaurant serves as a space to cook and discuss art. Artists on deck to participate include: Matthew Day Jackson, Carol Goodden, Tina Girouard, and Jonathan Horowitz.

Maria Loboda’s Topiaries

Another participant in the Frieze Projects program is artist Maria Loboda. Working with topiary, Loboda will create a color-coded garden in the park replicating an illustration of a 19th century European interior design motif. The 2-D image will be interpreted via a landscape of plants, flowers, and shrubs inspired by the plant wildlife found on Randall’s Island.

Marianne Vitale’s Weathervanes

From a 19th century interior recreated through topiary to a study of 19th century weathervanes by Marianne Vitale. Known for her large-scale sculptures of burnt wooden bridges and outhouses, Vitale’s work for Frieze will manipulate the folk objects and use them to toy with the fair’s environment.

The Sculpture Park

Featuring works from an international group, the Sculpture Park will include new pieces by Paul McCarthy (an 80-foot high inflatable dog!), Fiona Connor, Saint Clair Cemin, Martha Friedman, and Nick Van Woert. Located along the waterfront, you can walk amongs the large-scale works curated by Tom Eccles while enjoying a view of the East River.


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