​the i-D guide to frieze london 2015

As Frieze rolls into town and opens to the public today, here’s our guide to everything you need to see.

by Felix Petty
14 October 2015, 1:35pm

Cindy Sherman at Georg Kargl
Raf Simons was apparently seen running over to Georg Kargl to buy some works by Cindy Sherman during the VIP preview yesterday morning. Just a few booths down though was a painting by Brian Colvin at Corvi Mora, an image Raf used in his spring/summer 13 collection. You could probably do an alternate tour of Frieze around Raf references. Also spotted was Michael Stipe of REM buying one of Georgie Nettell's abstract paintings from the Project Native Informant booth. If nothing else art fairs are weird places.

Mark Leckey at Galerie Bucholz
Galerie Bucholz is a wonderful example of that, dominated as it is by Mark Leckey's giant, blow up, Felix the Cat sculpture, which dominates the middle section of Frieze. You can see his smiling face peeking over the booth's walls from the fair's entrance. It is -- like all of Mark Leckey's work -- impressive, funny, stand out, and in this context also a parody of the overblown and oversized art you're regularly subjected to wondering around Frieze. Galerie Bucholz also has a wonderful new sculpture by Simon Denny from his New Zealand Pavilion at the Venice Biennale, which incidentally is going on show at the Serpentine in November.

Amalia Ulman at Arcadia Missa
The best bits in Frieze are almost always the unique commissions in Live and Projects. Amalia Ulman's The Annals of Private History is no exception. Entering the booth you must hand over your shoes and your phone. Shorn of the safety of a screen to look at as you enter the red-carpeted compartment, curtained away and secluded from the bustle of the fair, you're forced to watch Amalia's work, a new video piece The Annals Of Private History, a meditation on the history of female diary writing, secrets and introspection.

Åyr at Frieze Projects
Åyr, too, are one of the fair's stand outs. The art-architecture collective have crafted an optical illusion of repetition within the heart of the fair, running lengthways through its middle and seemingly into infinity. Comfort Zone is part chill out zone, part critique of the hyper connectivity of the smart home -- the installation's lights respond to Twitter hashtags, turning on and off -- the installation explores the gap between art, play rest, domestic space and hyper connectivity.

Yngve Holen and Mark Flood at Stuart Shave
Winner of this year's Frieze Stand Prize, the painter and sculptor have between them created the fair's most aesthetically pleasing booth; Ynhve Holen's sculptural allusions to Jeff Koons in washing machines are covered in model aeroplanes and melting sheets of neon gel; Mark Flood googled images of Mark Rothko paintings and blew them up into prints, magically pixellating them into different calibrations of Rothko's plays on colour and texture.

Petra Cortright at Société
One of the most pre-eminent artists of the post-internet generation, Petra Cortright is showing her paintings at Société; "paintings" in the loosest of senses, as all the "brushwork" is created on Photoshop, and printed onto aluminium. They lack the immediacy, humour and newness of her videos, and, if we're being cynical, do seem to be designed as much to "sell" as they are to be "art" - but then they are incredibly beautiful. It's just hard to see an abstract painting at an art fair and not feel sceptical.

Ed Fornieles at Carlos/Ishikawa
Following his nail bar at last year's fair, and his standout show at The Chisenhale, Ed Fornieles, another one of post-internet art's more interesting practitioners, is showing his new Instagram project, featuring cartoon animal versions of himself, Amalia Ulman, and i-D contributor Dean Kissick, which document their cartoon selves' adventures, the booth's floor is scattered with their cartoon remains reimagined as cushions. It's quite sad.

Samara Scott at The Sunday Painter
A shallow, square trench cut into the floor of The Sunday Painter's booth was amassing large, awestruck crowds. Filled with water and detritus (belts, jewellery, dye, pieces of cloth, rocks, glasses, pencils) all floating precariously and flatly in the solution; it's part trompe l'oeil, part sculptural intervention. It's easy to lose yourself in what feels like its impossible depths, an oasis of weird calm in the bustle of youth in the fair's Focus section. It's a worthy investment, but I pity who ever buys it trying to get it out.

Rachel Rose at Frieze Projects
Just next to The Sunday Painter's booth, in the middle of Frieze's Focus section is Rachel Rose's installation, winner of the Frieze Artist Award, she has created a small-scale model of the fair tent, which, on haunches, you can crawl through. The installations lighting and sound meant to be mimicking the sensory world of the fair itself, though it feels more like a disco, just a very strange, small one and you can't dance in it.

Ken Kagami at Misako & Rosen
Japanese artist Ken Kagami is doing a durational piece of portraiture at the exhibition, in just 30 seconds the artist will look at you and sketch out what he imagines your genitalia will look like. For my friend Peter he drew him with three penises, two covered entirely in hair.

Tracey Rose at Dan Gunn
Dan Gunn's booth is covered with a fine black cloth, separating it from the restaurant and smoking areas next to it, and also hiding the booth's contents from view. Peel back the curtain though and watch Tracey Rose's video installation, which consists of a video feed of four CCTV cameras dotted around the Frieze's social areas. Each of the camera's feeds is stained a different colour relating to the artist's native South Africa, the Rastafari religion, and Marcus Garvey's pan African movement. A comment on the art world's colonial nature, but also Frieze as a cosmopolitan cross-cultural space, the surveillance industry and our habit of being just as interested in watching people at art fair's as we are about looking at the art.

Jesse Wine at Limoncello
London based ceramicist Jesse Wine has branched out at Limoncello's booth beyond the dimensions of his kiln, with a series of delicately coloured and textured wall tiles. Gabriele De Santis, who made the fountain in Limoncello's booth last year, has created two new sculptural drawings, a self portrait made of a shoelace in resin and a a painting that turns letters into anthropomorphic faces.

Andreas Angelidakis at The Breeder
Athens' The Breeder gallery are showing work by Andrea Angelidakis' digital ruins. In a video-sculptural installation, the artist-architect builds a structure in Second Life that is collapsing inside the world of the art fair in the form of printed pixelated cushions.

Adrian Ghenie and Navid Nuur at Galerie Plan B
The two artists have collaborated on Galerie Plan B's booth; which takes the form of a massive, abstract painting, and three channel video installation of the artists creating it; Adrian is painting whilst Navid is singing. Frieze is of course a trade fair, and the installation nicely highlights its weird disconnect between concept, creation and consumption.

George Shaw at Wilkinson London
George Shaw has covered an entire, massive wall of Wilkinson's booth with drawings done sketchbook style and tacked onto the wall; Ian Curtis, Frankenstein, Kes, Laurence of Arabia. It's a wonderful injection of the professionally amateurish into the slick surfaces of the fair. 


Text Felix Petty
Photography Linda Nylind. Courtesy of Linda Nylind/Frieze.

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