Today Frieze London opens for VIPs and professionals. If you have to wait with the mere-mortal crowd to get into the big tent, why not head South of the river, towards the South London Gallery. For his first solo show in the British capital, Rashid Johnson has crammed SLG’s elegant exhibition space with paintings, hanging plants, shiny shelves, and zebra-covered daybeds — “hijacking the domestic,” he tentatively explained.
Then make your way to Bermondsey, another London neighborhood that has radically changed over the last 18 months. The Drawing Room, a former cornerstone of the East End that recently relocated in the area, is hosting the first major UK exhibition of films and drawings by Paul Sietsema. A little further up at White Cube Bermondsey, Chicago-based artist and activist Theaster Gates has devised an exhibition splicing personal history, the civil rights struggle, and African American cosmetics.
Tate Modern is the next stop, with what is no doubt the photography exhibition of the fall: William Klein + Daido Moriyama. If you see people running down the Turbine Hall, do not be alarmed, they are probably part of Tino Sehgal‘s commission for the Unilever series. Go with the flow, and sit quietly for a while: one of them might come and tell you about the first time they felt they “belonged.”
Cross the river, and head to Mayfair, the beating heart of London’s art world. Toby Ziegler has created a mesmerizing installation in a car park on Old Burlington Street, fourteen floors below ground level. Large-scale sculptures, loosely inspired by Pieter Brueghel‘s painting “The Cripples” (1568), stand on prosthesis-like frames faintly lit by light boxes featuring a close-up from a Piero della Francesca fresco. This stimulating conversation between different eras continues at the Royal Academy with the superb “Bronze” exhibition. African, European, and Asian pieces from the last five millennia — including works by Picasso, Louise Bourgeois, and Jasper Johns — are gathered in what is the most ambitious cross-cultural examination of the medium to date.
Finish the day at the National Gallery. A small but dense Richard Hamilton exhibition retraces the late artist’s production of the last couple of decades, including his unfinished painting “Balzac (a) + (b) + (c),” based on the French writer’s short story “The Unknown Masterpiece.” This work crowns Hamilton’s lifetime fascination with Marcel Duchamp, and is considered by some as a response to the master of the readymade’s own final work, the enigmatic “Étant Donnés.”
— Coline Milliard
To read Monday’s edition of ARTINFO U.K.’s guide to Frieze Week, click here. To read Tuesday’s edition of ARTINFO U.K.’s guide to Frieze Week, click here. To read more about Frieze and Frieze Masters, visit www.artinfo.com/friezefiac
This post also appears on ARTINFO U.K.