Frieze New York 2022: activism, NFT action, and stellar shows around town
To mark the tenth-anniversary edition of Frieze New York (18 – 22 May), we’ve compiled a guide to the most exciting happenings inside and outside The Shed
For the tenth anniversary of Frieze New York, the fair makes its second return to The Shed. While last year’s fair took place amidst a landscape of vaccine QR codes and tentative caution, this year promises to be a stellar event charged with renewed confidence.
Frieze New York 2022 at The Shed: must-sees at the booths and beyond
Inside the fair, several galleries are focusing on solo shows, with highlights including Carol Bove at David Zwirner, Albert Oehlen at Gagosian, and Mai-Thu Perret at David Kordansky. Elsewhere, in group presentations, Sadie Coles HQ will showcase the likes of Alex Da Corte alongside its stable of established names including Urs Fischer and Sarah Lucas.
Hauser & Wirth will offer up a solo presentation by Charles Gaines showcasing large-scale works from his acclaimed and ever-evolving Numbers and Trees series. Thaddaeus Ropac will host Georg Baselitz, Donald Judd and Alvaro Barrington, while Perrotin offers sculptures by Paola Pivi, Bharti Kher, Daniel Arsham, and Takashi Murakami.
While the debate (and market) surrounding NFTs continues to ping-pong, LG is forging ahead, partnering with artist Kevin McCoy and co-creator Jennifer McCoy to showcase new works on cutting-edge hardware or ‘digital canvases’. Those in need of a pitstop (who happen to hold Frieze VIP membership) might swing by the Ruinart Lounge for Jeppe Hein’s meditative, interactive art experience.
Online, the Frieze Viewing Room offers a comprehensive alternative for those unable to attend in person. It’s organised to reflect the vision of the IRL fair, with sections such as ‘Frame’, highlighting galleries under ten years old, and a 3D viewing room powered by Vortic’s technology allowing viewers to tour the booths and browse a shopper-friendly ‘under $10k’ edit.
It’s been a heated political time in the US of late. With works like Pedros Reyes’ Zero Nukes and director of Frieze New York and LA Christine Messineo’s Plan Your Vote initiative, politics will stay high on the agenda. On the topic of art’s role in social and cultural progression, Messineo says, ‘To mark our tenth anniversary, Frieze New York is collaborating with vital, NYC-based non-profits that are also celebrating anniversaries. Their support of emerging visual and performing artists, especially women, Black, and LGBTQ practitioners, reflects the spirit of many of the artists exhibited at this year’s fair. The mission of these organisations remains as urgent as when they were founded in the 1970s, and Frieze New York pays tribute to their creative lives.’
Although the ‘tent’ (also known as The Shed), hosts the main event, satellite events will be unfolding across the city. Tom Burr evolves his 1997 essay, ‘Eight Renovations: A constellation of sites across Manhattan’, with a poster series that will pop up in eight locations, along with further work at The Shed. Elsewhere, Matches Fashion transports its Mayfair townhouse, 5 Carlos Place, to the Upper East Side, for a week of programming that includes retail, food, design and music from creatives including Ghetto Gastro, Atelier LK, Phaidon and artists Nari Ward and Hiba Schahbaz.
New York art exhibitions: what to see during Frieze New York 2022
Takashi Murakami: ‘An Arrow through History’
Gagosian (976 and 980 Madison Avenue)
Until 25 June 2022
Takashi Murakami is, it appears, always in the middle of a ‘moment’. But in New York this May, the Japanese artist is taking things up a gear with a three-part show spanning two of Gagosian’s New York galleries. In typical Murakami fashion ‘An Arrow through History’ will bridge worlds. At the 976 Madison Avenue gallery, the artist presents his Clone X NFT initiative (2021), developed in collaboration with RTFKT. Clone X is a series of NFT avatars conceived as three-dimensional figures bearing the artist’s distinctive motifs. Meanwhile, 980 Madison Avenue is devoted to paintings related to the Murakami.Flowers NFT project (2021 – 22). Murakami’s New York shows open ahead of a major exhibition dedicated at The Broad in Los Angeles.
‘Cindy Sherman: 1977 – 1982’
Hauser & Wirth 69th Street
Dates: until 29 July 2022
Cindy Sherman is an artist of many faces. She’s also an artist acknowledged for transforming the role of the camera in art. Beyond a photographer, Sherman has taken on the part of make-up artist, hairdresser, stylist, and director, as well as casting herself as the protagonist in her ultra-staged narratives. Her first major show at Hauser & Wirth focuses on pivotal early work – including the complete set of 70 Untitled Film Stills, Rear Screen Projections and Centerfolds – which delve into female stereotypes. Though created more than 40 years ago, Sherman’s formative work resonates in contemporary times to uncanny effect.
Whitney Museum of American Art
Dates: until 6 September 2022
The 2022 edition of the Whitney Biennial has been in the works since 2019; before the Covid-19 pandemic took hold and before the murder of George Floyd by an on-duty police officer. However, as Nick Compton reports, the politics of this show – explicit and abstracted – are mostly of identity and belonging, featuring the work of 63 deliberately diverse artists ranging from emerging talent (in ample supply) to art icons. Among the artists featured are Ellen Gallagher, Alejandro Morales, Emily Barker, Sable Elyse Smith, Coco Fusco and Charles Ray.
Nari Ward, ‘I’ll Take You There; A Proclamation’
Location: Lehmann Maupin
Dates: until 4 June 2022
Harlem-dwelling Nari Ward finds inspiration in his surroundings, quite literally. Working with found materials picked up on walks from his neighbourhood, large and small, he repurposes items from traffic cones to shoelaces into sculptures that challenge and question issues of community, gentrification, and economic disparity. Ghostly and indeterminable, one room-sized sculpture, composed of everyday items – milk crates, ladders, baby strollers, and liquor bottles – is a totem of remembrance to souls lost during the pandemic. The show includes four new text-based works, created by threading sneaker laces to form the outline of gothic-style letters, including the words ‘If We Must Die’, taken from the 1919 poem by Claude McKay.
Pace gallery presentations
Just a few blocks from The Shed, where Pace’s Frieze booth will host new paintings by Latifa Echakhch, the gallery will offer a wide range of exhibitions at its Chelsea flagship locations at 540 West 25th Street and 510 West 25th Street. Highlights include ‘William Monk: The Ferryman’ (until 11 June) which, in partnership with Grimm, will see a three-venue exhibition of Monk’s new paintings and works on paper take over Pace and Grimm spaces in New York and Pace’s East Hampton gallery. Elsewhere, India-based artist Prabhavathi Meppayil’s solo show presents new and recent paintings and sculptures, which showcase her usage of traditional Bangalorean goldsmithing tools and techniques passed down through generations in her family.
Moleskine ‘Detour’ New York exhibit
One World Observatory, One World Trade Center
Until 22 May
Notebooks can serve many purposes: to plan, document, and inspire new concepts. To reveal the inner workings of our best ideas, and conceal those we hope will never see the light of day. Non-profit Moleskine Foundation has amassed a collection of more than 1,300 ‘art notebooks’ – Moleskine notebooks each transformed by an artist into their own conceptual canvas. An exhibition titled ‘Detour’ at One World Observatory showcases those of 75 creative thinkers, including William Kentridge, Francis Kéré, Paula Scher, Sigur Rós, and Joana Vasconcelos. Each creator donated their notebook to the Moleskine Foundation in support of its mission of ‘creativity for social change’ through community youth programmes. §