Damien Hirst Butterflies, Frieze Art Fair 2017. All photos courtesy of NHYM
Last night was the Preview night of the Frieze London and it was full of bright colours and patterns. To me, it demonstrates a reaction to the difficult world we live in today with news reels filled with terrorism, gun violence and nuclear weapons waved around by complete goons, Trump v Kim. It is a dire and dark world and artists in reaction are creating pieces to take us away from it all.
There is something to be said about going back to comforting places. The colours and techniques felt very familiar this year and less eccentric than the past years. These above Gauguin and Matisse-inspired pieces induced a feeling of comfort in me, as if I had seen them before.
These geometrical patterns and colours above felt similarly influenced by greats like Rothko. There were a lot of cartoon-like art reminiscent of Roy Lichtenstein as well.
I particularly loved this piece, which was made up of four screens of a film of moving water, which was a soothing and peaceful scene in the middle of the crowded and frenetic art scene.
This was an interesting political, social and cultural commentary on South Korea.
There were a lot of patterns on display which creates a feeling of routine, familiarity and comfort, which I think the world feels and needs at the moment.
Of course the people watching was almost as great as the art. Preview night always promises colourful outfits and characters and this year did not disappoint with balloon woman:
I mean, how does she breathe??? I still haven’t figured this one out, but she was great ‘live art’ to watch, and the silver headed man was pretty entertaining too.
New To The Frieze:
This year, a new American Express Centurion Lounge opened at the Frieze for certain American Express card holders. They are opening airport lounges for their card members and have already 7 in the US and a few around the world like Hong Kong but plan to open them globally and this one is to showcase their new venture.
Inside the lounge, well, it does look like an airport lounge, but it offers complimentary champagne, snacks and even sandwiches, so when you are in need of an art-break, it is definitely worth stopping by for a drink and art-discussions. There is also a new BMW lounge, which you could sign up to and a VIP Lounge at Frieze Masters by the guys behind 1 Grovesnor Square.
Frieze keeps growing year after year, with parallel art, fashion, design and architecture events around London and now even airplane lounges, cars and luxury developers have joined the party. This year, to me, it was about comfort, routine and light and bright, which feels is what we are all needing these days.