Issue 206
October 2019

‘We are no longer confined to providing the entertainment between trays of finger food at openings. Performance has become a perfectly normal modus operandi.’ – Pablo Bronstein

The October issue of frieze leads with a special portfolio on the state of performance art. What makes it so compelling as an artistic medium? Featuring: Yve Laris Cohen, Geumhyung Jeong, Marija Bozinovska Jones, Nástio Mosquito, Robertas Narkus, Alessandro Sciarroni, Nora Turato, Lee Wen and more.

Also featuring: Hilton Als on domination, revenge and longing in the films of Kara Walker; Glasgow-based artist and filmmaker, Luke Fowler, on his formative experiences, from the BBC to Patrick Cowley; Jennifer Kabat getting jazzed by the candid prose of dance critic Jill Johnston; Collier Schorr learning to dance in a specially-commissioned visual essay; Sean O’Toole sparring with language through the writings of William Kentridge; and Hendrik Folkerts on Dale Harding’s potent reflections of Australia.

Plus, 35 reviews from around the world, including Paula Rego’s major retrospective at MK Gallery, Milton Keynes, and curator Susanne Pfeffer’s game-changing show, ‘Museum’, at the Museum für Moderne Kunst in Frankfurt. And answering our questionnaire is avant-garde polymath Meredith Monk, whose masterwork, Quarry: An Opera in Three Movements (1976) was restored and screened at Anthology Film Archives, New York, earlier this year.

Cover image: Collier Schorr, Photographer as a Portrait, 2019, photograph. Courtesy: the artist, 303 Gallery, New York, and Stuart Shave/ Modern Art, London

From this issue

State of the Art

Some thoughts on transience, in art and life

BY Jennifer Higgie | 26 SEP 19

‘Kara Walker reinvents painting and drawing’s conventions, while talking about ideas that are epic in scale and deep in blood,’ Als writes

BY Hilton Als | 26 SEP 19

As the artist’s largest survey to date opens at Zeitz MoCAA and Norval Foundation, Cape Town, Sean O’Toole examines his dadaist lexicon 

BY Sean O’Toole | 26 SEP 19

‘People younger than myself will be under the false impression that performance has always been taken seriously’

BY Pablo Bronstein | 26 SEP 19

Karen Archey on Ligia Lewis and Alex Baczynski-Jenkins

BY Karen Archey | 26 SEP 19

In a special photo essay, the artist places her body ‘in the line of danger, admiration, rejection, description’

BY Collier Schorr | 25 SEP 19

The artist’s physically gruelling performances reflect on the black body and the possibilities of resurrection

BY Evan Moffitt | 24 SEP 19

The restless, rageful ‘No Home Record’ lures as much as it discomfits

BY Hermione Hoby | 24 SEP 19

Performed images in contemporary art and everyday life

BY Isobel Harbison | 24 SEP 19

The Singaporean artist’s provocative performances constantly challenged power and prejudice

BY Wenny Teo | 24 SEP 19

Fabian Schöneich on the artist’s new performance at Kunsthalle Basel

BY Fabian Schöneich | 24 SEP 19

Should we be enjoying ourselves as the world goes to hell in a handcart?

BY Jörg Heiser | 23 SEP 19

Q. What could you imagine doing if you didn’t do what you do? A. Reading all day 

BY ​Meredith Monk | 23 SEP 19

‘Surge’ finds uneasy resonances between the 1981 New Cross fire and more recent tragedies

BY Marek Sullivan | 23 SEP 19

Motion and migration in the paintings of Frank Bowling

BY Negar Azimi | 23 SEP 19

Mimi Chu on Robertas Narkus, Nástio Mosquito, Nora Turato and more

BY Mimi Chu | 22 SEP 19

From blues to jazz to the baroque – new fiction from Claire-Louise Bennett

BY Claire-Louise Bennett | 22 SEP 19

Johnston showed how writing was performance and politics at once

BY Jennifer Kabat | 22 SEP 19

In Harding’s paintings and sculpture, the past and the present merge in a potent reflection on contemporary Australia

BY ​Hendrik Folkerts | 22 SEP 19

In a new collection, the author of ‘Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema’ updates her approach to feminism and psychoanalysis 

BY Erika Balsom | 21 SEP 19

Drawing on his dancer’s training, Laris Cohen radically presents his body simply ‘as is’ in his performances

BY Martha Joseph | 21 SEP 19

This year’s edition of the biennial in Moss, Norway, proves that it can trigger emotions but fails to show empathy

BY Chloe Stead | 21 SEP 19

Barbara Casavecchia on the 2019 Golden Lion-winning artist

BY Barbara Casavecchia | 21 SEP 19
Influences

From the BBC and the films of Robert Beavers to the poetry of Margaret Tait, the artist reflects on his formative experiences

BY Luke Fowler | 21 SEP 19

The artist’s extensive retrospective at the Migros Museum, Zurich, shows that the social diversity Willats portrays does not translate into an aesthetic diversity

BY Jörg Scheller | 18 SEP 19

As the playwright’s ‘Slave Play’ reaches a wider audience, Jameson Fitzpatrick looks at his work so far

BY Jameson Fitzpatrick | 12 SEP 19

Hernandez catalogues the avenues and intersections that make Los Angeles a city, and not only a web of connections between the area’s freeways and suburban sprawl

BY Jennifer Piejko | 11 SEP 19

At C3A, Córdoba, the artist explores the strategies of theatre and its relation to the audience

BY Rafael Barber Cortell | 10 SEP 19

From political caricatures to self-contradictory statements by Donald Trump, this year’s edition of the biennial pays tribute to the potential of satire

BY Emily McDermott | 06 SEP 19

With the 25th anniversary of the Rwandan Genocide against the Tutsi, an exhibition at Leipzig’s GfZK sheds light on the aftermath of the tragedy

BY Louisa Elderton | 03 SEP 19

The artist’s solo show of tapestries at Anna Schwartz Gallery in Melbourne are invocations of an erstwhile era 

BY Sophie Knezic | 28 AUG 19

In curator Susanne Pfeffer’s latest, ‘Museum’ speaks to our moment of funding scandals, museum protests and social media outrage

BY Sarah James | 27 AUG 19

At Studio Voltaire, London, Mary Reid Kelley and Patrick Kelley take aim at #mefirst capitalism and the gospel of self-care

BY Rosanna McLaughlin | 27 AUG 19

In the artist’s largest survey to date, science fiction and narratives of black resistance offer a vision of a more inclusive future

BY Esmé Hogeveen | 27 AUG 19

Artist Candice Lin connects the conditions of slave labour involved in building the drug trade’s infrastructure to the continued Orientalizing representations of the drugs themselves

BY Diana Hamilton | 23 AUG 19

Drawing from Martian landscapes and the notebooks of a closeted lesbian science fiction writer, the artist shows us how far we humans have yet to go

BY Lauren DeLand | 22 AUG 19

The artist’s survey at the Hessel Museum of Art at CCS Bard, Annandale-on-Hudson, links life on microscopic and cosmic scales with moments of spiritual self-searching and reflection

BY Natalie Haddad | 22 AUG 19

How the artist’s work expressed the feeling of being silenced

BY Zoe Pilger | 20 AUG 19

At Remai Modern, Saskatoon, the late carver and Kwakwaka’wakw Chief’s sculptures are an indictment of destructive consumerism 

BY Natasha Chaykowski | 19 AUG 19

A force in the late ’80s and ’90s, the photographer and critic receives her first solo show in over 22 years at Autograph, London

BY Rianna Jade Parker | 19 AUG 19

Abidi’s comic, deflationary videos undercut the pomp of state politics

BY Greg Nissan | 15 AUG 19

Wesselmann’s sculpture attempted ‘to pick up a drawing by its lines and carry it’ into the world

BY Olivia Rodrigues | 13 AUG 19

The influence of op art leaves scant trace of the artist’s hand, but otherworldly unease pervades his repetitions and reflections

BY Mary Huber | 12 AUG 19

The Belgrade-born sculptor developed a language that acknowledged a world in flux

BY Louisa Elderton | 12 AUG 19

The only woman affiliated with the Arte Povera movement resisted machines, definitions and permanence

BY Hans Ulrich Obrist | 08 AUG 19

Amid widespread civil unrest, a timely show at Para Site speculates on the future of labour and politics in our technological age

BY David Markus | 08 AUG 19

At the Museum of Art and Design at Miami Dade College, ‘Where the Oceans Meet’ looks at the ‘creolizing’ of cultural influences across continents through the lens of Édouard Glissant and Lydia Cabrera

BY Alpesh Kantilal Patel | 07 AUG 19

The artists in ‘Time Forward!’ at the V-A-C Foundation in Venice speculate on what the future might bring

BY Barbara Casavecchia | 06 AUG 19

A show at Gagosian, London, pairs the pop master with the early twentieth-century eccentric, beloved of Duchamp

BY Harry Thorne | 05 AUG 19

The late artist rejected state censorship while presaging our image-saturated age

BY Fernanda Brenner | 01 AUG 19

Shamefully, the artist was not awarded a solo show in the art-world capital until six years after his death

BY Jack McGrath | 01 AUG 19

At HB Station in Guangzhou, the artist offers a shattered version of domestic bliss

BY Hera Chan | 30 JUL 19

A new show asks what it means to be radical in our age of spectacle

BY Daniel Culpan | 29 JUL 19

The first, long-overdue European survey of work by the East Coast painter opens at Modern Art, London 

BY Nicholas Hatfull | 16 JUL 19

The artist’s tent city at Hauser & Wirth, in rapidly gentrifying downtown LA, is a ‘parody of pious politically activist art’ 

BY Jonathan Griffin | 12 JUL 19

A survey at Denmark’s Louisiana Museum displays the Austrian artist’s expert linking of social concerns and surrealism

BY Steven Zultanski | 09 JUL 19

The Belgian sculptor’s new work in San Gimignano reflects on mortality, medieval assertions of power and the migrant crisis

BY Paul Carey-Kent | 02 JUL 19

Found stashed under her bed when she died, the spiritualist’s drawings and embroideries go on show at William Morris Gallery

BY Chloë Ashby | 01 JUL 19

A show at Fondation Cartier, Paris, brings together works by young artists from across the continent

BY Wilson Tarbox | 17 JUN 19