What To Check Out This Weekend At The Frieze Art Fair
It’s peak art fair season, and this week New Yorkers are being graced with Frieze, an art trade show hosted on Randall’s Island in the East River. This whole weekend, you can take a lovely/slightly inconvenient ferry ride and go check out all the different booths of beautiful, expensive, and delightfully weird art. If you were lucky enough to snag a ticket and you’re unsure of where to start first, here are some of the fair’s highlights. Just try to stay away from the formaldehyde goat.
Damien Hirst: Mound of Dead Flies
At first, this piece just looks like a large black circle. And as you get closer, you wonder, “Is that a made up of black Brillo pads?” Nope! It’s dead flies. Classic Damien! Damien Hirst is known for work featuring dead animals that look like they should be in some science lab–they’re now unfortunately leaking illegal levels of noxious gas. This work, titled “Black Sun” doesn’t include any formaldehyde, so you don’t have to worry about being slowly poisoned. But be careful of “Black Sheep with Golden Horns.” Maybe admire that piece from afar when you’re in the Gagosian Gallery booth.
“Instructions From the Sky” by Argentinian artist Eduardo Navarro features a number of performers wearing mirrors, which follow the movement from the clouds. They look like giant, synchronized C-D’s, spinning about outside of the Frieze tent. The artist explains the performance in a video, saying “If we could synchronize with clouds to send messages and guide the way we move in space, then perhaps we would only need to use mirrors adjusted to our bodies.” Sounds like some kind of cult, but it looks like a modern day Devo cover band. We’re down to join if it means we get one of those mod mirror costumes.
A Live Donkey
There’s a real, live donkey! Because why not? Anything goes in the world of modern art. It’s very cute, and it’s showcased in a white room with a chandelier. The artist behind the installation is Italian satirical artist Maurizio Cattelan, the brains behind genius magazine Toilet Paper. It’s a recreation of an installation that he made back in 1994–this time with a different donkey. The 1994 installation got shut down after one day because the donkey wouldn’t stop braying, and was making a mess. It’s a literal party animal. The work is called “Enter at Your Own Risk—Do Not Touch, Do Not Feed, No Smoking, No Photographs, No Dogs, Thank You.” You can probably try and pet it and sneak a photo when nobody’s looking–we probably would. And needless to say, animal rights activists are pissed.
A Gifting Pick Pocketer
Artist David Horvitz hired a “pickpocket” who actually leaves little metal sculptures in your bag instead of taking anything out. As Horvitz said to The Wall Street Journal, “You can’t really say it’s a performance, because you can’t see it, but it’s something that happens in public, in plain sight. I like the idea that, at a fair with so much going on, this artwork happens in the shadows of attention.” The pickpocket is going to remain anonymous, enabling him to stay low-key at the fair. The details of the secretly gifted art are also on the DL, allowing it to be a surprise to people who find them in their bags. So far, Instagram has shown that people have received little silver kissing seahorses from the mystery man–pretty cute.
Fridges and fridges of Soylent!
Artist Sean Raspet teamed up with Berlin based-gallery Société to create a booth that’s essentially just a corner of fridges stocked with Soylent, an algae-soy meal replacement. It’s being given out for free, but we have heard that it’s not exactly pleasant tasting. In keeping with the futuristic mood (Soylent is beloved by Efficient Tech People), the staff is clad in grey boiler suits. When he’s not working on art, Raspet is actually a flavorist for Soylent, so he combined both jobs in one! Treat yo’self to some free goodies.
Photos via Damien Hirst, Art News, Instagram, and The New York Times
Stay tuned to Milk for more from Frieze.