Visitors to Frieze New York are really fashionable and always on trend, sporting the latest art clothes. Indeed, Los Angeles-based artist and animator Lyndon Barois Basquiat’s embellished coat has been featured in a striking image of a man running on the back of his garment. “My wife bought it as a gift,” he said, fielding a flurry of questions from other fans about the eye-catching coat. In a recent interview Freeze Magazine Barois discussed his stellar collection of work by artists such as Amoako Boafo and Diedric Brackens, including a 1975 portrait of boxer and activist Muhammad Ali.
Hernan Bas, magnetic
Among the various private viewings in Chelsea this week was Hernan Bass’ show at Lehman Maupin’s new series. Theorists: Vol. II. These paintings depict mysterious young men, says Bass, who are all idealistic artists. One of the works shows a young Salo taking a Polaroid photo in front of a fridge full of milk cartons. “The work reminds me of the missing children appeals that used to appear on milk cartons when I was a child. This guy is emotionally lost,” Bass told us. The artist expressed his love for the pink flamingo magnets – he has a total of 900 – which may one day appear in one of his works, he said.
Water for democracy
Thirsty fairgoers running through the streets grab free water bottles on the top floor of Freeze New York this week. Covered with the word “banned”, these beautiful bottles are raising eyebrows. But look closer and you’ll see that when the water tanks are scanned, they contain a QR code that links to planyourvote.org. An initiative created by Freeze New York director Christine Messineo in partnership with the nonprofit vote.org. Designed to remove barriers to voting. Crucially, the association’s website notes that Georgia lawmakers have passed a law banning the group from giving them away, saying, “Handing out water bottles at an art show is stupid.” Giving food or water to people waiting to vote. Also remember—restricted bottles are great durable containers if you need a running accessory.
Charles Gaye praised him.
There’s buzz around David Kordansky’s stand at Frieze New York that current art star Lauren Halsey is hosting solo works. Among the many explorers was the artist Charles Gaines. “I taught Lauren at the California Institute of the Arts,” he told us. “You can tell something’s going on. I’m very happy with her. Gaines’ 31-year career at CalArts has mentored many black artists, including Mark Bradford, Rodney McMillian and Halsey, whose gypsum-based sculptures and digital collages sold out on the first day of the fair.”
Freeze is for birds.
Frieze visitors need look no further than Argentina Gallery Barro in search of truly heart-warming art in the fair’s focal piece, Buenos Aires-based artist Monica Giron’s 1993 series. Ajouter Para An Winner (Trousseau for the Winner). The project designed a range of merino wool sweaters, gloves and leggings that fit well with bird species that travel in South America’s Patagonia region, such as the Andean flamingo. The fancy dresses aren’t just flights of fancy, though — each sweater retails for $40,000.
as a matter of fact
Fran Lebowitz was typically gracious while presenting the Lowe Foundation Crafts Prize at the Noguchi Museum earlier this week. The famous raconteur author, known for her take on Montana Kirk, explained why she struggled a bit with the concept of the award. Artnet News: “I asked Jonathan Anderson [Loewe’s creative director] Why is this called craft instead of art? Because in my opinion, let’s face it, the difference is between usefulness and vanity, and most of these things are vanity – which makes them art. Congratulations to Eriko Inazaki who won the €50,000 purse. Works selected by each of the 30 finalists will be on display at Isamu Noguchi’s studio at the Noguchi Museum (until June 18).
JR in AR
French street artist JR is expanding his territory to New York, called the “AR Community Network.” JR fact Inside the Big Apple, which promises to be the world’s largest digital participatory art project. JR is inviting “everyone with a smartphone to create and contribute images that highlight what places in their community mean to them,” says the PR blurb. This awesome selfie project involves building AR walls that “float” around Manhattan, creating portraits and personal “sound bites.” This initiative is “powered” by the immersive artwork SuperBlue. Maybe the art world fans can build some art around the shed at Frieze New York.