Faces of Frieze 2020: Picturing the art crowd at Los Angeles' premier fair

February 18, 2020 0 By JohnValbyNation

The second Frieze Los Angeles art fair opened the same week as the Oscars, drawing its own starry crowd to the massive gallery tent at Paramount Studios and the Frieze Projects installations on the back lot. Also shining: artists and art lovers who have come from around the world to see the work and to gawk at the art-forward fashion — or to be gawked at. Times photographer Carolyn Cole took it all in Thursday, during a VIP preview, and Friday, when the public could get its first peek. As she did last year, Cole captured the personalities of an event that is something of a Comic-Con of the blue-chip art world.

Artist Trek Thunder Kelly said he has attended Frieze fairs — also held in London and New York — at least six times. He stands in front of “The Party Continues 2020″ by Sayre Gomez.

Santa Monica artist Takako Yamaguchi has her work on view at Frieze for the first time. “It’s way overwhelming, but it’s nice to be included,” she said, gesturing to her series of photo-realistic paintings of geometric shapes in shades of white.

Doris Mayday of the styling company Dapper Day made her way through the fair during the Thursday preview. Among her favorites so far was the Vielmetter gallery booth featuring Genevieve Gagnard, who made her own news wearing a shirt emblazoned with the message: “Sell to black collectors.”

Ramses Alexander works as a VIP host for Frieze, overseeing off-site artist talks for fashion sponsors including Prada. “I’m here to see what’s new and fabulous in contemporary art in Los Angeles,” said Alexander, photographed in front of “Jinkyard of Baby Dayton’s” by Alex Becerra.

Homeira Goldstein, who was featured in The Times years ago in a story headlined “Living for Art,” said she attends a Frieze fair every year.

Darvish Fakhr, an artist based in Brighton, England, had an L.A. exhibition of his work dovetail with Frieze. He turned heads as he moved in a variety of ways in front of different pieces of art. “The paintings dictate the movements that I do for each one,” he said. Later he could be seen on the Paramount backlot, riding a skateboard that had been decked out to look like a magic carpet.

Mishka, a 3½-year-old Pomeranian from New York City by way of Moscow, is a Louise Bourgeois fan. Here he shows his sitting skills in front of Etal Adnan’s “Foret.” See images of Mishka’s Times interview and photo shoot.

Pomona artist Jaime Muñoz has a solo exhibition with the Glendale gallery the Pit in a section of Frieze called Focus L.A. He said his work is about his experience growing up in Southern California as a child of immigrants. “It’s impactful to me that I am able to share space here, alongside many other amazing artists like Gabriella Sanchez and Greg Ito … who are also reflecting the diverse community of L.A. in their work.”

Venus Rached, 7, perfectly accessorized for the occasion, stands in front of one of Muñoz’s paintings.

New York curator Stacy Engman said she avidly follows Cindy Sherman on Instagram. “I love this!” Engman said, pictured in front of a giant Sherman tapestry. “Cindy Sherman has been exploring her images from Instagram. I’m thrilled about it. It’s the first time she’s showing her work from her Instagram account in a fine art setting.”

Asked what brought her to Freize for the first time, artist Rhiannon Griego, pictured in front of Aaron Garber Maikovska’s “Studio Day,” had a succinct answer. “Inspiration,” she said. “And an opportunity to connect with galleries. I’ve been hiding out in Ojai for a while.”

Chela Mitchell is art advisor based in New York. A regular at Frieze New York, she was making her first trip to the Los Angeles iteration of the fair. “I’m looking for art for my clients, and since I’m in the contemporary art space, I have to know all that‘s new and fresh,” she said. She’s pictured in front of Oren Pinhassi’s “Umbrella.”

For your parting shot, artist Trek Thunder Kelly again, from a different angle.

Tail or no tail, The Times marches onward with its Frieze Week coverage. Find out about a pole-dancing performance-art piece happening Saturday, or about Frieze’s Asian-focused film series. Catch up on the party where James Turrell’s Roden Crater scored a $3-million pledge from the founder of Zynga, the Getty event on criminal justice reform that turned out the likes of Marina Abramovic and Alex Israel, or the Chateau Marmont shindig where partygoers made their predictions for this year’s show. For a little counterprogramming, Times art critic Christopher Knight provides his take on the concurrent Felix art fair.