It seems like every month there’s a major art world event — whether its Art Basel, the Venice Biennale, or Berlin Art Week — the art calendar is stacked. Frieze London is no exception, with the fair quickly becoming an unmissable art world staple since its inception in 2003.
With matching events in New York and LA, Frieze is one of the biggest commercial art fairs — but you don’t have to be in the market to enjoy it. The London fair gathers 160 galleries from around the world and shows art from over 1,000 of the best artists, so even if you’re not at Jay-Z levels of collecting, the fair is a must-see for anyone interested in what’s happening in the art world right now.
Alongside the contemporary fair, Frieze runs a Masters fair that highlights classic work from icons like Botticelli and Picasso, as well as a Frieze Talks series with industry-focused conversations with people like Ai Wei Wei and Mark Bradford and a deep dive into where the art world is, 100 years after the founding of the Bauhaus. The fair also coincides with the final days of Frieze Sculpture, which opened in July and includes work by Tom Sachs, among others.
Frieze London takes place from October 3 – 6, buy your tickets here and scroll for everything you need to know about the artists and the galleries exhibiting at the prestigious art fair.
The best contemporary galleries are exhibiting
Frieze London is big, but that doesn’t mean that any gallery can take part. Each year, roughly 500 galleries apply for the fair, which is then whittled down by 160 by a group of judges. This year, we’re most excited to see work by New York’s Bodega, Berlin’s Peres Projects, König Galerie, and Galerie Eigen + Art, as well as international powerhouses David Zwirner, Sprüth Mager, Gagosian, and Perrotin.
The artists you shouldn’t miss
Each gallery will get a space to present its artists, but it’s not exactly like a school science fair set up. Frieze London has themed spaces where the fair shines a light on rising and established artists. This year, there will be solo shows from Raf Simons’ favorite artist, Sterling Ruby, Kara Walker who will also have a piece at the Tate’s Turbine Hall, and the French-Algerian artist Neïl Beloufa who is currently on show at the Venice Biennale.
In the Emerging Talents Focus area, highlights include New York-based artist Troy Michie, who will present work inspired by immigration, queerness and the African American and Latinx cultural experience, and Chinese artist Tang Dixin who will show the latest in his performance series Rest is the Best Way of Revolution where the artist invites members of the public to have parts of their bodies cast so they can “rest up.”
Alongside the gallery’s section, there is also a curated space where Hong Kong’s Para Site curator Cosmin Costinas has brought together a selection of textiles and weaving that explore the impact and legacies of colonialism today.