Art News

Frieze New York 2019: What to Watch For

The leading art advisors weigh in on what’s coming to the eighth edition of the fair.

The leading art advisors weigh in on what’s coming to the eighth edition of the fair.

The art community will be descending on Randall’s Island next week for Frieze New York—one of the contemporary market’s leading events showcasing artworks from galleries from 26 countries. For 2019, Frieze is going the extra mile—quite literally.

Along with its home base on Randall’s Island, Frieze New York will also be taking over other venues across the Big Apple. The centerpiece will be the inaugural Frieze Sculpture  at Rockefeller Center. Curated by Brett Littman, director of the Isamu Noguchi Foundation and Garden Museum, the exhibition will feature pieces by 14 artists throughout the campus.

Back on Randall’s Island, visitors can enjoy Diálogos, a section devoted to Latino and Latin American art, while there’s a tribute to Linda Goode Bryant, the famed gallerist of Just Above Midtown. There’s also the Outsider Art Fair, which will present “The Doors of Perception,” an exhibition of the work of self-taught artists curated by Javier Téllez.

“I think you can expect that Frieze New York will reflect the identity of what the city is,” said Loring Randolph, artist director of the Americas at Frieze New York. “This is the epicenter of the art world, a place where a lot of thought-producing and taste-making people live and work. This the place for ideas, innovation and diversity. And that’s what the fair on Randall’s Island and beyond is going to represent.”

Indeed, there will be a bevy of sculptures, paintings, photographs and everything in between from great masters to emerging talents. More importantly, they will be available for purchase. Frieze New York, is, in essence, a sales platform—a direct way for galleries to push products to a crowd willing to spend upwards of seven figures. To guide them are art advisors and other professionals trained to distinguish the spectacular from the sub-par—a power they can use wield to make or break a gallery’s bottom line.

Though it is still too early to predict what will be the major trends and breakthrough artists to spring from Frieze New York 2019, we asked a selection  premier art advisors to tell us what they expect this year,what they are most looking forward to seeing, and what they’ll be recommending to their clients.


Roxanne Cohen, Director of Art Advisory
There have been some noticeable trends in recent art fairs in the last year, and I only see these growing. I expect to see many galleries reviving artists’ careers. This is because collectors are always looking to see something new and different but, at the same time, seek to collect an artist with an already established career, as there can be more stability and growth in collections of this nature. I also anticipate that there will be many female artists featured. With many institutions and galleries giving them the recognition they deserve over the past year, I see no sign of that trend stopping. For example, the recent social media campaign called #5WomenArtists challenges individuals and cultural institutions to name five female artists. Women such as Lee Krasner, Joan Mitchell, Louise Bourgeois, Tracey Emin, Helen Frankenthaler, Carmen Herrera, and Mary Cassatt have all seen their market value increase over the last year, and have been included in many more shows, events, and educational literature.

Maria Brito, Art Advisor and Curator
I’m really looking forward to seeing the Latinx and Latin American thematic section at the fair. This has never been done before, and it will have 13 solo presentations by artists such as Firelei Báez, Luis Flores, and Ana Mendieta.

Todd Levin, Director of The Levin Art Group
What’s going to happen is still up in the air, but what I can say is that is that Frieze will focus on emerging artists. We’re going to see less of the blue-chip and higher-priced work because Frieze and TEFAF are basically [being held] at the same time and they don’t want to be in competition with each other Expect to see the moderate and lower-priced works from emerging artists.

Liz Fensterstock, Founder of Liz Fensterstock Fine Art
I’m looking forward to the new Alicja Kwade sculpture at 303 Gallery. I’ve had my eye on her for a while, and I especially love her Roof Garden Commission, ParaPivot, up at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. As spring brings us the beginnings of longer days and warmer weather, the sculpture on top of the Met helps me reflect on the changes that time and seasons bring.

One of the things I love the most about the Frieze is that it brings in galleries that only come to New York once a year, like the Goodman Gallery from South Africa. I’m excited to see their 2018 Alfredo Jaar piece, Men Who Cannot Cry, as well as their Hank Willis Thomas work. These the work of these artists creates and connects, makes bridges between people and ideas, and makes us see things more clearly.

Lisa Austin, Founder of Lisa Austin & Associates
It would be nice to see the kind of excitement that can be generated by dealers who take  chances with their booths in terms of visual effects or the introduction of new artists. We know that’s what gives an art fair its buzz. We’re always looking for the next new trend, the overriding idea, the new star, but it’s hard for any dealer to sustain that in fair after fair. What I’m generally seeing in early PDFs is more of a focus on strong presentations by the best sellers, presumably with a goal of solid sales revenues—particularly after the lost opportunities of last year’s opening day.

Sara Kay, Founder of Sara Kay Gallery
I always find great work at Frieze New York, and this year I am particularly excited for the curated sections that will feature artists I’ve pursued for a long time. I’ve championed outsider art for years and cannot wait to see “The Doors Of Perception,” curated by Javier Téllez in collaboration with the Outsider Art Fair. Franklin Sirmans tribute to Just Above Midtown and Linda Goode Bryant’s brilliant vision and initiative is a not to be missed on my list. I am a massive fan of Senga Nengudi, so I’ll be looking out for what Thomas Erben Gallery, Lévy Gorvy, and Sprüth Magers bring to the fair. I am definitely going to visit Laura Hoptman’s “Spotlight” section focusing on significant work by overlooked figures and the rarely seen practices of modern masters. As a lover of drawing, that is right up my alley. And I admire the programs of so many of my neighbors in the East Village and Lower East Side: Karma, Rachel Uffner, Salon 94, Andrew Edlin. I will for sure be stopping by their booths.

Anne Bruder, Founder of Anne Bruder Art
Although the art world appears oversaturated with fairs, I always look forward to Frieze New York. It means springtime, great food, and most importantly, well-curated booths. This year, I’m particularly excited for the solo artists’ booths, which feel more like a gallery-going experience. Solo booths add context to the featured artist’s oeuvre, which you can’t fully grasp from one isolated work. These booths tend to be more interesting to me, and serve as a useful way of educating the collectors with whom I work.
As an art-history nerd, I’ve been following the California Light and Space movement for many years, and was thrilled to see Fred Eversley—a long-overlooked artist—finally get his due with the recent announcement that he is now represented by David Kordansky Gallery, Los Angeles. Kordansky will have a solo booth with Eversley at Frieze, which I am very much looking forward to seeing. Another anticipated solo booth is Matthew Ronay at Casey Kaplan Gallery, New York. Ronay will be having a concurrent exhibition at Casey Kaplan, so his booth at the fair is nicely linked to local goings-on. Ronay continues to push the limits of his sculptural practice with new works that are bodily, tactile, and colorful.

Lastly, I love Frieze’s effort to incorporate young galleries in the Frame section, which is always comprised of solo artists’ booths. This year, I am particularly looking forward to seeing Jonathan Lyndon Chase at Company Gallery and Anthony Iacono at Marinaro Gallery.

Wendy Cromwell, Founder of Cromwell Art LLC
It’s a little early to speculate, but I can say that I am very excited to see the Frieze Sculpture installation at Rockefeller Center. I love sculpture and buy quite a bit of it for clients, so it’s great that they’re doing that. As far as the entire fair, I can always count on Frieze for surprises. I go to quite a lot of fairs and usually see the same things. What’s great about Frieze is that they always encourage galleries to curate something special and bring something new and refreshing. I think that this year’s show will continue with the set trends that are already prevalent in art. About six to seven years ago, artists started exploring ceramics, and showing terrific creativity using this perceived craft-based medium. I also think the trend toward configuration will continue.

Heather Flow, Founder of Flow Advisory
For Frieze New York 2019, I look forward to the inaugural Frieze Sculpture New York, curated by Brett Littman. Littman possess a sensitivity to architectural context and aesthetic intricacy. I am sure he will create a symphonic melody between the works, the environment of Rockefeller Center, and the viewers.

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