in Frieze | 01 MAY 19

LIFEWTR Fund Brings Emerging Artists to Brooklyn Museum

The Museum acquired works by Diedrick Brackens and Gala Porras-Kim at Frieze New York

in Frieze | 01 MAY 19

At Frieze New York 2019, the LIFEWTR Fund enabled the Brooklyn Museum to acquire two major works by acclaimed emerging artists for its permanent collection. when no softness came (2019) by Diedrick Brackens, and 13 International Dogs by Gala Porras-Kim join one of the nation’s most comprehensive collections, spanning 5,000 years of human creativity from cultures in every corner of the globe.

Launched in 2017, The LIFEWTR Fund at Frieze New York supports the acquisition of significant works by emerging artists for the Brooklyn Museum, a leading cultural institution and community museum dedicated to serving a wide-ranging audience.  In 2017, the LIFEWTR Fund made possible the Museum’s acquisition of Untitled (1971) by Virginia Jaramillo, as well as Untitled (1978-80) by Ed Clark in 2018.

Members of the LIFEWTR Fund jury with Esther Kim of Various Small Fires, Loring Randolph and Victoria Siddall of Frieze and LIFEWT Curator José Falconi with Diedrick Bracken’s work acquired for the Brooklyn Museum. Photo: Da Ping Luo/Frieze

‘LIFEWTR’s support has been transformative,’ noted the Museum’s Shelby White and Leon Levy Director, Anne Pasternak, ‘as the previous two significant works by Ed Clark and Virginia Jaramillo have since been widely lauded and are actively traveling to major museums throughout the US and UK.’ Both Jaramillo and Clark’s works are currently featured in the international touring exhibition, ‘Soul of A Nation: Art in the Age of Black Power,’ now on view at the Broad Art Museum.

‘Over the last two years, we have seen how the institutional support of an artist’s work can positively impact the artist as well as the museum’s community’ added Olga Osminkina-Jones, Vice President, Hydration & Innovation, Global Beverages at PepsiCo. ‘In everything we do at LIFEWTR, we are dedicated to showcasing emerging artists and helping them advance their careers. ‘We are so proud that The LIFEWTR Fund can make a lasting impact and deliver on our shared goal of supporting creativity globally.’ 

With the acquistions of works by Brackens and Porras-Kim, the LIFEWTR Fund ‘demonstrated a sincere commitment to support the development of emerging artists’ careers’, said Artistic Director for Frieze in the Americas, Loring Randolph, noting also the new Frieze LIFEWTR Sculpture Prize for emerging artists and LIFEWTR’s support of the exhibition Electric at Frieze New York.’ 

The 2019 selection panel comprised the Brooklyn Museum’s Shelby White and Leon Levy Director, Anne Pasternak; Acting Chief Curator, Susan Fisher; along with curators Eugenie Tsai, Catherine Morris, Drew Sawyer, Ashley James and Carmen Hermo. The LIFEWTR Fund is chaired and organized by Olga Osminkina-Jones, Vice President, Hydration & Innovation, Global Beverages, PepsiCo. The LIFEWTR Fund builds on the 15-year tradition of museum acquisition funds at Frieze Art Fairs and deepens the partnership between Frieze and LIFEWTR, a premium water brand committed to supporting and advancing the careers of emerging artists.

Diedrick Brackens, when no softeness came, 2019. Courtesy: the artist and Various Small Fires. Photo: Da Ping Luo/Frieze

Born in 1989, artist Diedrick Brackens explores the intersections of identity and sociopolitical issues through thoughtful, intricate and large-scale figurative tapestries, inspired by the cultural histories of African, American and European textiles. The work acquired via the LIFEWTR Fund was from a solo presentation of works by Brackens at Various Small Fires (Los Angeles), a gallery debuting in Frieze New York’s Frame section, which is curated by Andrew Bonacina (The Hepworth) and Laura McLean-Ferris (Swiss Institute), which features solo presentations of emerging artists.

Born in 1984, Gala Porras-Kim works across media including sculpture and drawing and engages conceptually with Mezoamerican cultural objects and museum practices, with a particular interest in histories of conservation and preservation. Commonwealth and Council (Los Angeles), the gallery from which the work was acquired, is part of a new curated section at Frieze New York called Dialogos, showcasing Latinx and Latin American artists, presented by El Museo del Barrio.

Main image: Diedrick Brackens, when no softness came (detail), 2019. Courtesy: the artist and Various Small Fires. Photo: Da Ping Luo / Frieze