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Frieze New York 2016 Draws Record Attendance, Driving Major Sales Across the Fair’s International Galleries and Curated Sections


The fifth edition of Frieze New York closed on Sunday, May 8, with ambitious presentations from galleries from around the globe that generated exceptional sales and fostered meaningful dialogue with collectors, curators and art enthusiasts.

The fifth edition of Frieze New York closed on Sunday, May 8, with ambitious presentations from galleries from around the globe that generated exceptional sales and fostered meaningful dialogue with collectors, curators and art enthusiasts.

Convening more than 200 galleries from 31 countries, Frieze New York 2016 showcased an extraordinary cross-section of work by established, emerging and under-recognized contemporary artists. The fair drew over 43,000 visitors from across the country and around the world, with record attendance on Preview Day and throughout the week, and reinforced the role of Frieze New York as a vital platform for engaging with the most influential and inspiring artists working today.

For the fifth consecutive year, Frieze New York was sponsored by Deutsche Bank, continuing a shared commitment to discovery and artistic excellence.

Across its main section and three specially curated sections—Spotlight, Focus and Frame—Frieze New York 2016 united international galleries at all stages in their development and inspired high-quality exhibitions, with a particularly strong presence of female artists, collaborative practices, solo presentations, as well as a prominent focus on artists with recent and upcoming institutional shows.

‘I was delighted to hear many people say this week that the quality of work and the environment of the fair were better than ever, and this is thanks to our exhibitors who went to great lengths to create fantastic presentations for Frieze New York 2016.The galleries raised the bar yet again, shaping stands of extraordinary ambition, and this drove tremendous attendance and sales throughout the week,’ said Victoria Siddall, Director, Frieze Fairs.

Mounted in a light-filled structure designed specifically for the presentation of contemporary art, Frieze New York was presented in Randall’s Island Park on May 5 – 8.

Gallery Response

International collectors responded with great enthusiasm to the gallery presentations across Frieze New York, with galleries reporting major sales from the moment the fair opened.

Marc Payot, Partner and Vice President of Hauser & Wirth (Zurich, London, New York, Somerset, Los Angeles), shared: We had a wonderful week at Frieze New York. From our perspective the caliber and internationalism of the visitors, including so many colleagues from museums, reached a great new level. The fair has taken its place among the best in the world. In terms of sales, Hauser & Wirth had a robust week. We placed Philip Guston's important 1977 oil painting Black Coast and a very important drawing from Guston's coveted series of sleeping figures, done in the 1970s. Roni Horn's work was a real draw: We placed two of her cast glass sculptures ($975,000 each) and several works from her series of Hack Wit drawings ($85,000 each). We also sold Paul McCarthy's red silicone Red River, the first sculpture from his new Stagecoach body of works, for $750,000. These and other sales, and the atmosphere of the fair itself, made the week a great success for the gallery.’

Rachel Lehmann, Founder of Lehmann Maupin (New York), said: ‘Though it's only in its fifth year, Frieze New York is a very mature fair. The quality of artworks and collectors are very high. It has become a prominent art destination and a platform that allows us to present to both historical and new artworks in a curatorial context.’

On returning to Frieze New York for the fifth year, Wallace Whitney of CANADA (New York) shared: ‘We've always enjoyed coming to Frieze and this year was our best yet. Installing in a larger footprint proved to be an amazing opportunity for us to showcase works by a dynamic range of artists. Organized by New York-based artist Katherine Bernhardt, the booth was an energetic fusion of the artists and peers she works with across New York, and we were blown away by the support and enthusiasm from collectors, curators and visitors each day.’

Joost Bosland, Director of Stevenson (Cape Town and Johannesburg), said: ‘Frieze New York attracts the most sophisticated audience of any fair in the United States. Our survey of two decades of work by Moshekwa Langa was warmly received by both collectors and art historians. It was great to share our research with curators like Philippe Pirotte, Trevor Schoonmaker, Naomi Beckwith, Tobias Berger, Dan Leers and Rita Kersting, all of whom have played important roles in Langa’s career.’

Greg Lulay, Director of David Zwirner (New York and London), remarked: ‘Frieze New York grows stronger every year and is one of the gallery's most vital fairs. This year we noticed an even more expansive range of major institutional as well as individual collectors visiting each day from around the world. Sales for our presentation of works by Lisa Yuskavage and Isa Genzken were very solid. We sold out of all four Yuskavage paintings, which were created especially for the fair; including one to the Long Museum, Shanghai, which will feature the work in forthcoming exhibition dedicated to female artists, opening this July.’

Adam Sheffer, Partner and Sales Director at Cheim & Read (New York), remarked on the gallery’s Frieze New York experience, sharing: ‘We had a very successful Frieze New York this year. We had a number of significant sales of works by Lynda Benglis, Jenny Holzer and Louise Fishman, among others. The engagement with collectors and curators was steady and meaningful throughout the fair. More and more, we find that fairs such as Frieze complement what we do in our bricks and mortar space, playing a vital role in our program and serving as important platforms to strengthen relationships and create new ties across the international cultural community.’

Winner of the Frieze Stand Prize, Galerie Gisela Capitain (Cologne) said: ‘Frieze New York was very successful for us. Throughout the week we were visited by so many key collectors and museum curators from the USA as well as from Europe—they were all there. Several came back to the fair later in the week to take a deeper look at our presentation and make significant acquisitions. For all these reasons, Frieze New York is the essential U.S. art fair for us.’

Rob Diament, Director of Carl Freedman Gallery (London), added: ‘We had a great week at Frieze New York with sales made throughout the week. The response to our Katherine Bernhardt series was phenomenal. The other success story for us was Edith Dekyndt, the Belgian artist—we sold many works by her with interest from collectors and museums.’

Matthew Wood, Managing Partner at Mendes Wood DM (São Paulo): ‘For us it was the best edition of Frieze New York yet with a very ebullient opening day and strong visitation through the weekend. Also it seems that the fair has an increasingly global pull and we met many friends from Europe and China.’

Wendy Olsoff, Co-Owner of P.P.O.W. (New York), commented: ‘This year Frieze New York was really exciting for us—it was our third year participating and we felt very comfortable in the venue and had fun venturing out again to Randall's Island. Viewers can really see the work at Frieze New York and the space is big enough for artworks to be viewed generously. People spend a lot of time looking. Curators and collectors were there every day, and we were able to make sales each day as well. Now we must think about Frieze London!’

Michael Findlay, Director of Acquavella Gallery (New York), shared: ‘This was Acquavella’s second year at Frieze New York and again it was a great success for the gallery. The engagement from major private and institutional collectors was steady throughout the week. Frieze has proven a valuable extension of our gallery’s ongoing program, and we’re looking forward to continuing to strengthen the new and existing relationships we’ve built here.’

Michael Callies of dépendance (Brussels): ‘We had a good fair, and the quality of the fair brought a lot of good collectors. We were happy to place works from all the artists we brought: Richard Aldrich, Sergej Jensen and Peter Waechtler.’

Curated Sections

For the first time this year, each of the curated sections—Spotlight, Focus and Frame—were located in discrete areas of the fair, rather than woven throughout. This new arrangement encouraged visitors’ focused experiences of these dynamic presentations, which highlighted artists and galleries that are often overlooked in fair settings. Sales throughout Focus and Frame were very strong—supporting a number of emerging galleries’ innovative programs—and there was meaningful engagement at Spotlight, with both collectors and curators rediscovering a number of 20th-century artists from beyond the Western tradition.


Pippy Houldsworth (London) shared: ‘This was the gallery's first outing at Frieze New York and we were delighted by the overwhelming response to our solo presentation of early work by Mary Kelly. Corpus, Preliminary Artwork from 1984 was acquired by Centre Pompidou Foundation on the first day of the fair and we are in the midst of serious conversations with other major institutions and private collectors about the few available works by this important artist.’

Participating in Spotlight for the second year, Garth Greenan Gallery (New York) presented an installation of renowned and rarely seen work by New York artist Ralph Humphrey. Greenan shared: ‘The Spotlight section provides an ideal platform for our gallery's program, dedicated to established artists whose work deserves greater recognition. The response to Humphrey's work was extraordinary throughout the week. This fair's convening power is unmatched—drawing collectors and curatorial leadership from major institutions around the world—and we were very pleased to have a placed one of Humphrey's most significant works with a public institution.’

Galerie Hervé Bize (Nancy) exhibited in Spotlight for the second year in a row with a presentation dedicated to French artist Francois Morellet. Bize shared: ‘Frieze New York is undoubtedly one of my favorite art fairs. I appreciate its design and also the atmosphere, as well as the natural light and the clear presentation of the galleries. We were extremely proud to present at Frieze New York an outstanding ensemble of works by François Morellet, the minimalist pioneer who just turned 90 years old last week. We sold well and the booth got a great response from visitors and colleagues alike—it was obviously a positive week, especially for a foreign gallery like us.’

Ed Gilbert, Director of Anglim Gilbert Gallery (San Francisco), commented: ‘We've loved participating in Frieze New York and the Spotlight section in particular, which consistently draws thoughtful attention of collectors as well as major curators and scholars. The response to our presentation of works by David Ireland, a major figure of the Bay Area art community, was overwhelming—and Frieze served as the perfect platform to introduce this artist's work to new audiences and re-engage with long-time supporters.’


Beatriz López, Artistic Director of Instituto de Visión (Bogotá), said: ‘We felt a great energy and commitment for the market among the Frieze New York fairgoers. We were particularly surprised and happy by the institutional interest in Latin American artists. This energy and interest was reflected in our sales. We were very excited to be participating in the fair this year and also grateful to have been awarded one of this year’s stand prizes.’

Guillaume Sultana of Sultana (Paris) said: ‘We had an amazing fair. We sold out the Pia Camil and Jacin Giordano works we brought and had to change the booth every day to keep up with demand. We met lots of new people, including some major Latin American collectors and Americans. It couldn’t have gone better.’

Rachel Uffner of Rachel Uffner Gallery (New York) shared: ‘This was our first year participating in Frieze New York and it was an extremely positive experience, with strong sales to quality collectors, great conversations with curators, and an encouraging show of support and interest from our colleagues in the international gallery community. We presented two artists on our stand—Pam Lins, who has been with the gallery since we were founded, and Leonhard Hurzlmeier, who is having his first solo show at the gallery in October—and the work of both artists was well-received and acquired by a great mix of collectors.’


Christine Messineo, Director of Hannah Hoffman Gallery (Los Angeles), commented: ‘Frieze New York has been incredibly supportive in connecting us with leading curators, collectors and galleries from around the world. We were thrilled by the response to our concise exhibition of the work of Joe Zorrilla—an artist who is integral to the art community on the West Coast—and the fair provided a platform for us to extend and expand Joe's reputation in the New York and international art world.’

Leo Xu of Leo Xu Projects (Shanghai) noted: ‘This was our fourth year participating in Frieze New York, which always brings together a distinctive mix of collectors—from major institutions to corporate collections to individuals new to the art market. We were overwhelmed by the level of engagement and thoughtful response to the work of Liu Shiyuan, which we exhibited on our stand this year. Frieze New York played an important role in introducing her work to the culturally and demographically diverse audience that is unique to New York.’

Paul-Aymar Mourgue d'Algue, Truth and Consequences (Geneva), said: ‘This was our first year at Frieze. We were happy to take part and very happy to have won the Frame Stand Prize. This is a validation for our program and artists, who are very committed to the work.’

Simon Wang, Director of Antenna Space (Shanghai), said: ‘We’ve had a great time at Frieze New York and were really impressed with the number and quality of Chinese collectors at the fair this year—everyone was here, and on top of that we also met some good American collectors. All the works we brought went to great European and American collections.’


Drawing a record level of institutional attendance, Frieze New York 2016 welcomed 217 groups including leadership and stakeholders from leading art museums from around the world. International art museum directors and curators lauded Frieze New York for convening an unparalleled collection of emerging and established galleries, artists and cultural influencers for a vibrant week of conversation and discovery.

Julián Zugazagoitia, Director of The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art (Kansas City), shared: ‘Frieze New York’s unique format—the airiness of the tent and the flow of galleries—creates such an inviting environment to contemplate the works of art on view. It was wonderful to see such a broad range of artists represented at the fair this year. There was a great balance of well-established and emerging galleries, creating interesting juxtapositions of art from various generations. And to top it all off, the quality and variety of the food offerings encourages people to enjoy a full day at the fair, as I did!’

Heidi Zuckerman, Nancy and Bob Magoon CEO and Director of the Aspen Art Museum, commented: ‘Since the inception of Frieze New York, we have taken the opportunity to host one of our board meetings in New York at the same time and offer a walk-through of the fair preview. Our board is particularly interested in the learning aspects of art and this year felt especially gratifying as we did a slow walk and spent a great deal of time looking at specific objects and talking about them. Frieze New York offers a brilliant opportunity to consider objects from diverse time periods, geographies and mediums together and for that I am grateful.’

Gavin Delahunty, Hoffman Family Senior Curator of Contemporary Art at the Dallas Museum of Art, shared: ‘Since 2012, the Dallas Museum of Art’s Contemporary Art Initiative has witnessed and delighted in the success and growth of Frieze New York. An annual trip for our patrons, we are always inspired by the quality of work and breadth of practices on display. This year that included artworks by Frank Bowling, Julije Knifer, Edith Dekyndt, Zahoor ul Akhlaq, Gillian Carnegie and Jean-Luc Moulène.’

Laura Raicovich, President and Executive Director of the Queens Museum, remarked: ‘At this year's edition of Frieze New York, the Queens Museum presented a suite of photos by Spencer Lowell of our beloved Panorama of New York City to benefit the Museum. Frieze had commissioned Spencer to create the photos for the promotion of the fair, and we loved the results! When Frieze offered us a booth, we collectively thought it would be fabulous to offer Spencer's photos to support the Queens Museum's educational programs. It was our first art fair and exceeded all our expectations. Not only did we raise significant funds that will make possible our deep work with underserved public schools as well as our renowned art therapy programs, but also raised our profile amongst fair-goers, from longtime collectors to the many artist attendees. And the Frieze team was terrific at every turn.’

Visiting museum leadership and patron groups included: Andy Warhol Museum, Pittsburgh, USA; Art Institute of Chicago, USA; Aspen Art Museum, USA; Brooklyn Museum of Art, USA; Belvedere Museum, Austria; British Museum, U.K.; Centre Pompidou Foundation, Paris, France; Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis (CAM St. Louis), USA; Dallas Art Museum, USA; Hammer Museum, L.A., USA; Glasgow International, Scotland; High Museum of Art, Atlanta, USA; Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington D.C., USA; Institute of Contemporary Art Miami (ICA Miami), USA; Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA), USA; Louvre Museum Paris, France; The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, USA; Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago (MCA Chicago), USA; Museum of Contemporary Art Cleveland (MOCA Cleveland), USA; Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit (MOCAD), USA; Museum of Contemporary Art Los Angeles (MOCA LA), USA; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (MFA Boston), USA; Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), New York, USA; Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Kansas City, USA; Palais de Tokyo, Paris, France; Philadelphia Museum of Art, USA; Portland Art Museum, Oregon, USA; Seattle Art Museum (SAM), USA; Serpentine Galleries, London, U.K.; Serralves Museum, Portugal; Stedelijk, The Netherlands; The Contemporary Austin, USA; Tate, London, U.K.; Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, USA; The Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, USA; Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco, USA; among others.

Frieze Art Fair Stand Prize & Frame Prize

Frieze New York 2016 included three new awards recognizing exceptional presentations from across the fair, including two Frieze Stand Prizes and a specific prize for a younger gallery in the Frame section, supported by Stella Artois.

The Frieze Stand Prize was awarded to outstanding presentations in two categories:

● The winner of the first prize, comprising all galleries taking part in the fair, was awarded to Galerie Gisela Capitain (Cologne) for their presentation of Barbara Bloom, Gillian Carnegie, Günther Förg, Luke Fowler, Anna Gaskell, Martin Kippenberger, Zoë Leonard, Meuser, Albert Oehlen, Seth Price and Christopher Williams.

● The winner of the second category, including galleries under twelve years of age, was awarded to Instituto De Visión (Bogotá), which presented sculpture, installation, painting and documents by artists Pia Camil, Wilson Díaz, Otto Berchem and Alberto Baraya.

The prizes were awarded by a jury of leading museum directors and curators including: Suzanne Cotter (Director, Serralves Museum, Porto), Reto Thüring (Curator of Contemporary Art, Cleveland Museum of Art) and Philippe Pirotte (Curator, la Biennale de Montréal 2016 and Director of Städelschule, Frankfurt am Main). A special commendation went to Stevenson (Cape Town and Johannesburg) for their survey of Moshekwa Langa.

Supported by Stella Artois, the 2016 Frame Prize, dedicated to the most deserving presentation in the specially curated section of galleries founded within the past eight years, was Truth and Consequences (Geneva), which presented works by featuring Daniel Dewar and Grégory Gicquel. The prize of $7,500 was awarded by a jury of international curators and director, including Sarah McCrory (Director, Glasgow International, U.K.), Pavel Pys (Curator of Visual Arts, Walker Art, Minneapolis, USA) and Gabriel Ritter (Curator of Contemporary Art, Minneapolis Institute of Art, USA). Leo Xu Projects (Shanghai) received a Special Commendation.

Frieze Education

Organized as part of the non-profit arm of Frieze New York, Frieze Education runs annually from October through June, providing high school students and children from underserved communities across New York’s five boroughs with access to arts programs through a combination of workshops and tours of artist studios, galleries, museums and the fair. For 2016, Frieze Education has focused on students’ creative responses to the art they encounter in museums and galleries and the similarities and differences from their own art-making and education.

Sponsored by Deutsche Bank for the fourth consecutive year, Frieze Education encompasses ‘Frieze Teen’ workshops with major artists and cultural institutions across New York that illuminate the journey of an art work from creation to exhibition. For ‘Frieze Teens’ 2016, students met with artists such as T.J. Wilcox and Jessi Reaves, and visited contemporary galleries, museums and nonprofit art spaces including Dieu Donné, Bridget Donahue Gallery, Materials for the Arts, MoMA PS1, Project Projects and White Columns. As a culmination of the program, Frieze Teens created the Young People’s Guide to the Fair and also served as volunteer tour guides at Frieze New York for visiting school groups. Additionally, on Sunday, May 8, the Frieze Teens presented a film about their experience of Frieze Education in the Auditorium at Frieze New York.

Supporters and Sponsors

Thorsten Strauss, Global Head of Art, Culture and Sports for Deutsche Bank, said: ‘Congratulations to Frieze on another successful event in New York. The fair continues to provide an opportunity for galleries from around the world to showcase works from contemporary artists, bringing amazing art to New York City.’