As I didn’t make it to NY for the preview day I was expecting I would have to fight my way through crowds to see the show. I was wrong. This year the Armory had a VIP hour each day throughout the show period – which was great – when I went I literally had the place to myself. Well done to the Armory for this initiative. I’m sure others will follow.
Anyway I thought the show was good and I enjoyed it more than usual. It’s hard to put my finger on why exactly I liked the show more this year but I did. I think perhaps it was that this year’s show felt more manageable, more intimate. I was told the show was smaller this year, I’m not sure this was the case, but if it is, it was all for the better. No one knows the impact the arrival of Frieze in New York will have on the Armory, but I for one would miss it if it went into terminal decline and much prefer the Armory’s location to that of Frieze.
My favourite work of the show was without doubt an outstanding large-scale painting of a recording studio by British artist Nick Goss, which was shown by the Josh Lilley Gallery.
On seeing it I immediately tried to buy it. My disappointment that it was not available was soon tempered when I subsequently learned that the work had been acquired earlier by one of the Collection’s curators. Well-done Tamar! I am thrilled this work is in the Collection. (Incidentally this is not the first time this has happened. I remember at the first Frieze show in London, I fell in love with a stunning photo called ‘Competition’ by a Chinese artist little known to me then, called, Wang Qingsong. Before I bought it I asked another of the Collections curators, Eli Zagury, to come and see the work. He told me not to spend too much time thinking about it because he had already bought that work for the Collection.) How lucky Rob and I are to have such brilliant curators!
I also saw some very nice works from Lynette Yiadom-Boakye. We (as a collective) think she is a real talent though I personally had never found a piece of work that I adored. That is no longer the case. Lynette’s work “Wade” is stunning. Finally there were a few works of Idris Kahn on show, (I remain a big fan) and I saw some great video works at the Moving Image show in Chelsea which is worth checking out next year if you are a fan of this medium.