Flash News: Frieze / London – Carlos Cruz Diez / Paris – Philippe Parreno / Tate Modern – Art.Fair Cologne 2016 – Johan Creten / Crac / Sète


Get ready for Frieze London!

The first big art event of the autumn, Frieze London opens from 6th to 9th October 2016. This London fine art fair is continuously expanding. Building on its success in the contemporary art market, Frieze London has now been divided in two, with Frieze Masters, a space dedicated to the great masters. In May 2015, it was also launched with great success in New York. The expansion of Frieze London is due to the dynamism of its young director, Victoria Siddall, 38, who is constantly on the lookout for new opportunities. Wanting the event to be a prestigious meeting place to discover art, she has managed to mix the most promising galleries with the most well-known. If the price of a stand can reach £500 per square metre, the fair is also providing discounts of up to 50% to give the best upcoming galleries from around the world an opportunity to exhibit. Frieze London shares the same ambition as the major auction houses in London: to attract the best art from the five continents. This year, 160 galleries from 30 countries come together in Regent’s Park with, for the first time, galleries from Taiwan, Guatemala and Egypt.

Discover the work of Carlos Cruz Diez in Paris

From 15th to 25th October 2016, in the Palais Iena, headquarters of the Conseil économique, social et environnemental in Paris, art enthusiasts will be able to enjoy an exhibition showcasing the weightless and colourful work of Carlos Cruz Diez. The Venezuelan artist is making KANDINSKY‘s wish come true by creating 3 dimensional works of art that seem to be « floating in the air. » For 10 days only, the exhibition offers visitors the opportunity to immerse themselves into a « Labyrinthe de soustraction chromatique » (1969) consisting of monochromatic and polychromatic compositions and delicate atmospheres of light and colour.

Now 93 years old, Carlos CRUZ-DIEZ, a master of Op Art, continues to explore « the instability of reality. » His work already, which already has a place in art history, is part of the permanent collections of some of the best museums in the world, such as the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York, the Tate Modern in London, the Museum of Modern Art and the Pompidou Centre in Paris. Highly sought after and performing well at auction, Cruz Diez’s best sale so far was $845,000 in 2013 for a complex work called Physichromie Ubs Rouge and created in 1975 (Sotheby’s New York, 28th May 2013). His best works are as expensive as those of Victor VASARELY, with whom Cruz Diez contributed in the 1950s to the emergence of a radical form of abstraction known as Optical and Kinetic Art .

Philippe Parreno at the Tate Modern

The futuristic shape of the New Tate Modern in London, a building created by architects Jacques Herzog and Pierre de Meuron and completed last summer, overlooks the vast Turbine Hall exhibition space, which has hosted many remarkable sculptures and installations in the past. This year, it is the turn of French artist Philippe PARRENO to exhibit in the Turbine Hall for six months, upon the invitation of the Hyundai Commission at the Tate Modern (from 4th October, 2016 to 2nd April, 2017). The Hall is ideal for this artist who loves large spaces… Three years ago, he indeed managed to fill the 22,000m2 of the Palais de Tokyo with his installation Anywhere, anywhere out of the world designed to challenge our perception of space. For Parreno, the exhibition space is a space for experimentation, a space where the art work (video, sound, sculpture, ephemeral architecture or lighting) is designed to question the boundaries between reality and fiction. This major London exhibition is organised six months after his first one-man-show at the prestigious Gladstone Gallery in New York. The work of the French artist is becoming more and more recognised on the international stage. But this second market is yet to take off, as the artist’s works are rare at auction. His record price is still around the $20,000 mark, for his installation of helium-filled red balloons sold on 28th June, 2012 at Christie’s, London. A record that is bound to be equalled…

Art.Fair Cologne 2016

The gigantic KoelnMesse Halls once again host Art.Fair Cologne for its 14th edition. Founded in 2003 and having since become one of the three major German art fairs, Art.Fair Cologne is undoubtedly the climax of the KunstHerbst, the German autumn art season.

From 27th to 30th October, more than a hundred galleries representing nearly 650 German and international artists converge on Cologne. Some are exhibiting for the first time, such as the Heike Curtze und Petra Seiser Gallery, Vienna. Major players in Viennese Actionism, they represent prominent artists such as Christian Ludwig ATTERSEE and Hermann NITSCH. For its debut, the Scheffel Gallery will also showcase the impressive sculptures of Laura FORD, who represented the UK at the Venice Biennale in 2005, as well as the work of Jaume PLENSA.

Besides the stands of galleries, visitors will have the opportunity to visit the Taiwan Contemporary Art Show. The Hyperactive Symptoms of Contemporary Art exhibition showcases the best of the artistic trends in the country. Other highlights of this edition include the Galerie M Beck stand, which is left completely empty and in which artists can create two works per day, transforming the space into a stage where visitors can see the creative process in action. For the seventh consecutive year, thirty galleries will participate in the BLOOOM Prize, the highlight of the Fair, that allows young artists to gain an international reputation.

Young collectors are particularly well catered for: a Dutch delegation of the Young Collectors Circle created by Nienke van der Wal in Amsterdam will browse the aisles to make their first purchase. Showcasing a wide spectrum of artists breaking down the boundaries between different media and emphasising the prospective dimension of contemporary art, the 2016 edition of Art.Fair promises to be the perfect stage for up and coming artists.

Johan Creten at Crac in Sète

A large retrospective of the work of Johan CRETEN will be shown at the Regional Centre for Contemporary Art in Sète from 22nd October, 2016, with sixty exceptional works combining striking ceramics and monumental bronzes. Entitled La traversée (The crossing), the exhibition offers a journey illustrating the mystery of nature, where flowers and algae are mingle with strange and fascinating animals to celebrate 350th anniversary of the port of Sète.

Johan Creten is a Belgian artist. He lives and works in Paris. Awarded the Prix de Rome, he was in residence at the Villa Medici from 1996 to 1998 and also became the first artist in residence at the Manufacture Nationale de Sèvres (2004-2007). He has taken part in many exhibitions, including CERAMIX: From Rodin to Schütte at the Bonnefantenmuseum in Maastricht in 2015 and at the Maison Rouge in Paris in 2016 where an entire room was dedicated to his work. His work is also part of the public collections of several European museums and he is represented by prestigious Perrotin galleries (Paris, New York and Hong Kong), Almine Rech in Brussels and Transit in Mechelen, all three being partners of the exhibition at Crac in Sète.

This is not the first time the artist has exhibited here as he was invited to Sète 25 years ago. Meanwhile, he has become an iconic figure, along with Pablo PICASSO, Lucio FONTANA and Thomas SCHÜTTE, in the renewal of ceramics as an art form. Johan Creten has modernised this technique and its rules with his virtuosity. He has invented new mythologies applying a Baroque approach to classic designs. His works that seem to be about to give birth to some strange manifestation are particularly appreciated by Western collectors.

His reputation is beginning to have an impact in auction rooms and his popularity is skyrocketing. The three works auctioned last year have all been sold, with sales between $10,000 and $50,000. On 12th February, 2016, only a year after its completion, the work Odore di Femmina – Soft Shell – La Preciosa was sold for more than $57,000, more than twice the initial estimate, at Christie’s in London. Opportunities at auction are still scarce, but demand is growing in London, Belgium, Germany (19% of his sales) and especially the US, which account for half of his auction sales.