Money is everywhere at this year's Frieze; and we talk to Polish propagandist Wilhelm Sasnal.
If any two things sum up the two extreme ends of the art world it's White Cube and Gavin Brown’s neighbouring stands at this year’s Frieze Art Fair.
At White Cube, a queue of art collectors are waiting to have Jake and
Dinos Chapman draw on 20 pound notes. As much as I’d love a doodle by
the boys, at heart I feel they’re taking the piss out of the people
lining up and the evil money-grabbing nature of art. Next door at NYC’s
Gavin Brown Enterprises,
in contrast, artist Rob Pruitt has set up an art flea market with
pieces by people like Hope Atherton, Mark Leckey, Rivington Arms and
Dirk Bell. It’s grimy, fun and cheap. I pick up a vintage Jenny Holzer
set of pencils for a tenner, emblazoned with texts like "The Future Is
Frieze is bigger than ever this year – from the minute the doors open the space is crammed with serious money in serious suits. It’s a strange place – part supermarket, part conference, part catwalk. There are lots of neo-naïve paintings this year with hand scrawled lettering and lots of pieces with a dose of psychedelia but that's as far as obvious trends go. Free Jeremy Deller poster pieces pop up at different stands around the space. Pieces to search for include Michael Bauer’s genius drawings and swirling paintings at Peter Kilchmann, David Noonan’s human sized black and white cut out figures, and Shulgin and Chernyshov’s insane giant sunglasses at Moscow’s XL Gallery, which have cameras reflecting the viewer in crazy psychedelic style.
The best piece of the show was Vadim Fishkin’s installation Choose Your Day. You sit in a chair under a crazy set of lights. To your right is a screen. To you left is a series of buttons. Each button you press creates a different season or weather effect including evening sunset, thunderstorms or volcano. Very addictive. If you lose anyone they’re bound to be looking at Richard Prince’s installation – a bright orange Dodge with a babe in cut offs and cleavage polishing its chrome. After hours wandering the tent’s white walls I head to Home House for Decadence, Decay and the Demimonde – a group show with paintings by Julie Verhoven and Francesca Lowe. Say hello to Uffie before racing off to Haunch of Venison’s party at Sketch where Seb Chew is DJing. Drag myself home at 1am in preparation for Zoo and the ongoing art mess tomorrow.
A Q&A with Wilhelm Sasnal
Propaganda and photojournalism are just two of the influences on the paintings of Polish artist Wilhelm Sasnal. He’s sidestepping mediums at this year’s Frieze Art Fair, with special commissioned moving image projects.
Dazed Digital: Why did you want to start moving into film?
Wilhelm Sasnal: I started working with film soon after I started painting. I started making Super 8, got a camera from the father of a friend of mine. Super 8 was more accessible than video.
DD: How do your film pieces connect to your paintings?
WS: Working on films and paintings keeps a certain distance from the two. They complement each other, so I am not trapped in one discipline.
DD: What are you going to be showing at Freize?
WS: I will have some paintings and also the film that has been commissioned by Frieze.
DD: What do you feel about art fairs?
WS: I am not denying that I am part of it - my studio is not the end of my world...