LONDON—The opening day of the Frieze Art Fair on Oct.12, was less crowded and frantic than in the past, but there were sufficient sales by dealers to give the market a sense of optimism.
A panel of judges for the Outset /Frieze Art Fair Fund were first into the fair with £150,000 ($234,400) to spend to benefit the Tate Collection. They bought three works: Helen Almeida’s Drawing (with pigment), 1995–99, from Galería Helga de Alvear; Melanie Smith’s video, Xilitla, 2010, from Galerie Peter Kilchmann; and Alina Szapocznikow’s photograph, Tumour, 1969, from Gallery Broadway 1602. Individual prices were not supplied.
New York dealer David Zwirner had a great start, selling Neo Rauch’s Haus des Lehrers, 2003, for $1.35 million to an American collector and Marlene Dumas’s three-paneled Three Female Busts from the Sixties, 1993, for $550,000 also to an American collector. Subsequent sales by Zwirner included: Daniel Richter’s large-scale canvas, London is the place for me, 2011, for $350,000 to an Asian collector; Francis Alÿs’s small-scale painting diptych, Les grands amours du petit XXéme, 2011, for $350,000 to an American collector; Michael Riedel’s triptych, Blinds Vertical, Wheel 6 Spoke, and Checkerboard Across, 2011 (made especially for Frieze), sold to Asian collector Budi Tek for $150,000; Chris Ofili’s Blue Confession (Lady Chancellor), 2007–10, sold for $150,000 to a Swedish collector; and Dumas’s watercolour, Warhol if he Didn’t Die, 2002, sold for $100,000 to a German collector.
At Hauser & Wirth, Matthew Day Jackson’s, August 6, 1945, 2011, sold for $175,000, while three editions of Thomas Houseago’s Earth Mask II, 2011, all sold to European collectors for $100,000 each (one plaster and two bronze versions). Rashid Johnson’s Clown Hands, 2011, sold to a European collection for $65,000 and Phyllida Barlow’s, Untitled: 3brokenmonuments, 2011, sold to a European museum for $17,000. In the Frieze sculpture park, Hauser & Wirth also sold Houseago’s, Hermaphrodite (one edition of three), 2011, for $425,000 to a European collection.
At Lehmann Maupin, sales included several paintings by Angel Otero which were bought by private collectors in Australia, Turkey, Austria and Texas, ranging in price from $10,000/25,000. A set of three Tracey Emin paintings sold for £75,000 ($117,000) to British and American collectors and works by Klara Kristalova sold to American and Japanese collectors ranging in price from €8,000/20,000 ($10,900/16,350). Also, works by Do Ho Suh were sold to collectors from Belgium and Hong Kong, while pieces by Teresita Fernández were sold to American collectors.
Pace Gallery, which was participating in Frieze for the first time, said sales at the VIP preview were robust. They included: a Sol LeWitt structure, Form Derived from a Cube, 1983; a gelatin silver print from Hiroshi Sugimoto’s “Seascapes” series, titled North Pacific Ocean, Ohkurosaki, 2002; and a video work by Michal Rovner, Re-Verb, 2010 (Prices were not provided).
In the cheaper, Frame section of the fair, London’s Bischoff/Weiss sold two Raphaël Zarka videos, priced at £11,300 ($17,813) and £7,000 ($11,034), respectively, to David Walsh’s Tasmanian Museum of Old and New Art, and Los Angeles-based François Ghebaly sold a sculpture by Patrick Jackson to hotel tycoon Andre Balazs for $9,000. Meanwhile, Buenos Aires-based Ignacio Liprandi placed two shelves by the young Pablo Accinelli in Bernardo Paz’s prestigious collection in Inhotim, Brazil.