Frieze New York 2017 parties

About Those Jordan Wolfson Ice Sculptures at the Creative Time Gala

Jordan Wolfson with one of "his" ice sculptures.PHOTO BY MADISON MCGAW / BFA

Jordan Wolfson with one of “his” ice sculptures.


There’s a glut of social affairs around this time of year, when everyone comes to New York for Frieze, and this busy calendar is buttressed by all the galas. One of the more entertaining ones is the annual fundraiser for Creative Time, which in past years has taken over various gigantic spaces invariably in some far-flung part of the city to correspond with its spring programming: the Cathedral of Saint John the Divine in Morningside Heights, a humongous hanger at the Brooklyn Navy Yard, and so forth.

The party this year didn’t lure visitors quite as far into South Brooklyn as its most recent commission, Sophie Calle’s Here Lie the Secrets of Visitors of the Green-Wood Cemetery, in which you share all your deepest and darkest sins with the artist via notes slotted into a marble obelisk in the graveyard. Instead, it was off to City Point, which is an unfinished mall in downtown Brooklyn. When visitors arrived, they could look through peepholes into rooms (future boutiques, I guess) with flags made by Marilyn Minter, Vik Muniz, Trevor Paglen, Pedro Reyes, and Rirkrit Tiravanija, all to be auctioned off to support Creative Time.

But perhaps more eye-catching were a series of ice sculptures that masterfully recreated works by Jordan Wolfson. Female figure, Colored sculpture, Animation, masks—all the hits. They lacked a few things, like, for instance, the musical components, and the animatronic aspects, but hey, pretty cool. Selfies were taken with Female figure. Ice sculptures, love it.

Wolfson himself was on hand, wearing a pretty rad lounge lizard jacket, and I asked him how he made them.

He shrugged.

“I actually didn’t have anything to do with them,” he said. “Like, they asked my permission and I was into it. I guess they just sawed them down from a big block.”

So perhaps it would be inaccurate to treat these sculptures as actual Jordan Wolfson works, but it didn’t much matter—they were melted by the end of the dinner.

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