The Laboratory Arts Collective

FRIEZE LA - THE BUZZ

The halls were bursting and the Paramount backlot was buzzing and even though the punters were friezing, no one cared. This was a celebration of what L.A. does best, putting on a show. We can only imagine what next year will bring. Here are our favorite highlights from the LA FRIEZE ART FAIR.

TOM POPE’S ONE SQUARE CLUB

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Tom Pope’s One Square Club was tucked away in the furtherest corner of the backlot. The only thing that announced it was a maze of red ropes and two bodyguards, the Hollywood signifier for exclusivity. Immediately the queue began to form. One bodyguard shared with us that earlier in the day some eager beavers thought that standing in the queue was the installation before they realized there was more to it. The worlds smallest private members club can only accommodate two people at a time with the artist himself present as barman offering a cheeky glass of champagne. He wisely drank water. Tom explained the terms and conditions of membership to the club. Anyone could become a member for a day. It would cost whatever the average value of one square meter of property costs where-ever you happen to live (you pay for the club to be shipped to you of course.) The idea was sparked when Tom heard that one square meter of residential real estate in Kensington & Chelsea, London cost approx $15,000.

The parallel between the fair and Tom’s club are pretty clear. Value, exclusivity, elitism, fluctuating markets, who determines who pays what for club membership, for art, for entry into the hallowed world of Hollywood, who gets past the red rope… brilliant.

KARON DAVIS THE GAME

karon davis

Artist Karon Davis created The Game, a site specific installation that explores “how schools have become a place for the hunted - our children - through dramatically stage life size sculptures. The title is inspired by the name given to animals hunted for sport, and the work reflects on how our current administration’s policies and ideas have left families and teachers in fear for their lives.” Deeply arresting installation on the backlot.

DUGGIE FIELDS STUDY FOR SYD (NO USE TRYING)

STUDY FOR SYD (NO USE TRYING), 2016  Acrylic on canvas 204 x 242 x 3.5 cm 80.3 x 95.3 in

STUDY FOR SYD (NO USE TRYING), 2016
Acrylic on canvas
204 x 242 x 3.5 cm
80.3 x 95.3 in

Duggie Fields is a master of large superbly painted bold canvases that arrest with their size and vibrancy. Fields is a national treasure in Britain and a beloved member of the artistic community. His colorful past and his friends constantly turn up in his giant incandescent paintings. Duggie was brought to FRIEZE and L.A.’s attention by The modern Institute a fine establishment based in Glasgow, Scotland. Vibrant and bold, we are in love with the simplicity of this moment in time that Duggie spent with Syd Barrett another English icon. Rule Brittania.

DOUG AITKEN’S MIDNIGHT SUN

Doug Aitken, Midnight Sun (distant view with pools), 2019

Doug Aitken, Midnight Sun (distant view with pools), 2019

Doug Aitken was born in Redondo Beach, so it makes sense that his love of light, colour, swimming pools, and signage were all on display at FRIEZE. His exploration and originality are fresh and original, like a Los Angeles summers day, yet packs a punch when you stay long enough. Doug Aitken’s work just gets better and better. We’ve all known it for the longest time, the world has caught up. He is no longer L.A.’s best kept secret.

KULAPAT YANTRASAST’S TENT

WHY TENT

Luckily for FRIEZE, they employed the wonderful talents of Kulapat Yantrasast, founder and creative director at wHY to construct the tent that showed of the galleries finest. Light flooded into the space and thankfully the rain did not. The weather was reminiscent of a London day but the tent was one hundred percent Californian, bright and breezy.

THE MAGAZINE CONCESSION STAND AT FRIEZE (featuring the DESIRE issue)

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And what a lot of fun that was… until next year.