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Frieze London 2022: The Future is Bright

Highlights from the annual fair showcasing the leading contemporary galleries from around the world.

Anthea Hamilton takeover at Thomas Dane booth at Frieze London 2022. Photo by Henry Nicholls at Reuters. Courtesy of The Telegraph, www.telegraph.co.uk.
Anthea Hamilton takeover at Thomas Dane booth at Frieze London 2022. Photo by Henry Nicholls at Reuters. Courtesy of The Telegraph, www.telegraph.co.uk.

Frieze London returned to Regent’s Park in North London last week, a hugely welcomed opportunity for celebrating ingenuity, innovation and progress amidst the chaos and uncertainty of the U.K.’s current economic climate and instability on the geopolitical stage. Hundreds of galleries from over 40 countries gathered in the capital city to showcase the most exciting creative minds in contemporary art, reassuring the crowds of seasoned collectors and amateurs alike that great talent is exceeding all expectations.


Galleries from all over the world continue to regenerate, finding fresh and inspiring ways to engage their audience, and to foster long term relationships with and commitment to their artists. Whether large-scale awe-inspiring takeovers such as Anthea Hamilton at Thomas Dane or carefully curated blends of the iconic names that reflect the gallery ethos of Pace, Frieze London was an opportunity to internalise the market landscape as well as listen carefully to the voices of the artists and the gallerists that help shape the art world globally. Several booths left us feeling particularly impacted, and stood out as the tastemakers of the contemporary art scene today both in London and internationally, with a very clear indication of the promise the future holds.



Situated directly opposite the entrance to the fair is international behemoth Gagosian, a reliable fixture and an obvious must-visit. With an international reputation of discovering rare potential and catapulting their ingenues to stardom, Jadé Fadojutimi is no exception. At barely 30 years old, Fadojutimi has participated in prestigious shows amongst legendary company such as the Venice Biennale this summer and the monumental Mixing it Up: Painting Today at the Hayward Gallery in London last year. The artist describes her monumental paintings as “emotional landscapes,” dimensions of space and time to reflect on experiences and explore self-knowledge and memory. The vibrancy of the colour and scale of her brushstroke is both a reflection of the current fascination with near-neon hues we see from several artists but is simultaneously inherently personal and unique to Fadojutimi’s personal practice. All seven canvases on show at Gagosian sold before the end of the VIP opening, which comes to no surprise.


Jadé Fadojutimi canvases at Gagosian booth at Frieze London 2022. Image courtesy of Gagosian, www.gagosian.com
Jadé Fadojutimi canvases at Gagosian booth at Frieze London 2022. Image courtesy of Gagosian, www.gagosian.com

An example of how to gracefully yet boldly present three renowned artists within their programme, Lehman Maupin’s booth featured a mix of media from all-women artists. Teresita Fernandez, Calida Rawles and Cecilia Vicuna individually explore relationships between humanity, spirituality and the environment, whilst effortlessly inviting the Lehmann Maupin visitor on a sensory journey amongst all three. The mix of sculpture, painting, drawing and installation creates a fertile landscape to explore and question the connections between dream and reality, mind and body, material and concept. Front and centre is Chilean artist Cecilia Vicuna’s Caracol Azul (Blue Snail) (2017), that reflects her iconic practice using unspun wool, which is considered a sacred material in the Andes. Traversing the parameters of the natural and the spiritual world, Vicuna invites us to consider our relationship with natural resources and perhaps encourage us to respect and protect such components of our existence. Vicuna’s commission for the Tate’s Turbine Hall was unveiled on 11 October.


Lehman Maupin booth at Frieze London 2022. Photo courtesy of Maximilíano Durón at ARTnews, www.artnews.com.
Lehman Maupin booth at Frieze London 2022. Photo courtesy of Maximilíano Durón at ARTnews, www.artnews.com.

An iconic roster of hugely distinctive work, Victoria Miro champions some of the most established names in contemporary art alongside the heroes of the next generation, from Paula Rego to Chris Ofili, to Doron Lamberg to Flora Yukhnovich. Artists that reach inconceivable depths of emotive storytelling reflect deeply personal experiences that feel familiar to all who view their work. These experiences navigate what is inherently real and also dreamlike, a type of surreal expression that fosters a connection both understood and other worldly. At Frieze, it was hard to miss Flora Yukhnovich’s Fantasia (2019), reflecting her fascination for Rococo language within the Tiepolo and Watteau narrative that tackle contemporary issues whilst Chris Ofili’s jewel-toned delicate paintings featured magic and mysticism both of our past and the imaginary. A special tribute showed the final large-scale pastels from Paula Rego, who passed away last spring. Finally, the Wangechi Mutu sculpture Sacrem Heart (2019) was beautiful and arresting in equal measure.


Flora Yukhnovich, Fantasia (2019) at Victoria Miro booth at Frieze 2022. Photo by Kate Fensterstock.
Flora Yukhnovich, Fantasia (2019) at Victoria Miro booth at Frieze 2022. Photo by Kate Fensterstock.

Victoria Miro booth at Frieze London 2002, featuring Wangechi Mutu and Paula Rego. Image courtesy of Artsy, www.artsy.net.
Victoria Miro booth at Frieze London 2002, featuring Wangechi Mutu and Paula Rego. Image courtesy of Artsy, www.artsy.net.


A fiercely unique presentation, Perrotin also addressed notions of the surreal experience within a particularly expansive booth, providing space for visitors to breathe and reflect on the complex reality of the work selected. An ethereal display of pastel, dreamlike colours and form, intertwined with notably tense and introspective subject matter, artists grappled with notions of history and perspective to include Daniel Arsham. His preoccupation with ancient sculpture and elegant form whist integrating the dystopian future invites an uncanny relationship with his practice. GaHee Park’s initially calming and pleasantly pale paintings and drawings are gentle at first and quickly reveal complicated negotiations within the darker depths of the human condition.


Perrotin Booth at Frieze London 2022. Photo by Eva Herzog. Courtesy of all the artists and Perrotin, www.perrotin.com.
Perrotin Booth at Frieze London 2022. Photo by Eva Herzog. Courtesy of all the artists and Perrotin, www.perrotin.com.

With two sprawling exhibition spaces in London, one in Mayfair and one in Bermondsey, White Cube’s programme ambitiously pursues the bold and the immersive. This past year included a multi-level Jeff Wall exhibition at the Mason’s Yard gallery, grand in scope but achieving the quiet and introspective intimacy the photographer is renowned for. Leading the charge in renewed recognition of ceramics in fine art is Theaster Gates, having presented clay works alongside video and installation which command cultural celebration and social intervention. His tar painting Color Study with Red and Gray (2022) reflects his diverse use of industrial material, and heralds his design for the Serpentine 2022 Pavillion Black Chapel. The booth at Frieze was a cohesive presentation of the breadth and diversity of White Cube artists, who also include Anthony Gormly, Beatriz Milhazes and Tracey Emin.


White Cube booth at Frieze London 2022. Photo by Bojana Popovic. Courtesy of Quintessentially, www.quintessentially.com.
White Cube booth at Frieze London 2022. Photo by Bojana Popovic. Courtesy of Quintessentially, www.quintessentially.com.

To learn more about these artists and their work, please click on the gallery names above for direct access to their websites.




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