Frieze LA 2020: What The Dealers Said

Frieze LA 2020

Frieze LA 2020 attracted 35,000 visitors during its four days at Paramount Pictures Studios, which featured 75 local and international galleries in addition to unique artist commissions as part of Frieze Projects and the Artist Street Fair on the Paramount Pictures Backlot.

After just two years, it is already hard to imagine Los Angeles without an annual Frieze Week – Bettina Korek

Frieze Los Angeles ushered in its second edition as part of an expanded Frieze Week that celebrated Los Angeles’ art community at Paramount Pictures Studios and throughout the city. Running from an invitation-only Opening Preview on Thursday, February 13 through Sunday, February 16, Frieze Los Angeles brought together galleries, institutions, artists and organizations to encourage and increase the possibilities of art discovery and patronage.

Frieze LA 2020
Frieze LA 2020 Backlot Paramount Pictures

Frieze is one of the world’s leading platform for modern and contemporary art for scholars, connoisseurs, collectors and the general public alike. Frieze comprises three magazines—frieze, Frieze Masters Magazine and Frieze Week— and four international art fairs—Frieze London, Frieze Masters, Frieze New York and Frieze Los Angeles.

Victoria Siddall, Global Director of Frieze Fairs, said, ‘It has been a fantastic week at Frieze Los Angeles and I am thrilled with the positive response to the fair from everyone involved. We have seen strong results from galleries at every level, from emerging artists in Focus LA to multi-million dollar sales. The atmosphere has been electric both at the fair and across the city and we feel so honored that L.A. has truly embraced Frieze in just our second year here. We are already looking forward to 2021.’

Bettina Korek, Executive Director of Frieze Los Angeles, said, ‘After just two years, it is already hard to imagine Los Angeles without an annual Frieze Week. Frieze Los Angeles is the heart of a moment that galvanizes creative communities across the city. While the exhibitors, artist-run spaces, nonprofit organizations and artists onsite at Paramount only scratch the surface of L.A.’s multifaceted cultural scene, new models we’ve tested this year like the Artist Street Fair have been a resounding success. We want fairgoers to know they do not need to be a collector to be an arts patron–patronage can be a part of everyone’s life. My hope is that Frieze Los Angeles shines an international spotlight on L.A. while preserving the character of this city as one like none other.’

Who Was There Frieze LA 2020

Prominent attendees at the fair included Paramount Pictures CEO Jim Gianopulos and local and international museum representatives Cecilia Alemani, Maria Balshaw, Klaus Biesenbach, Thelma Golden, Michael Govan, Joanne Heyler, Stefan Kalmár, Hans Ulrich Obrist, Ann Philbin, and Beatrix Ruf; international art collectors Shelley Fox Aarons and Philip E. Aarons, Agustín Coppel, the de la Cruz family, Beth Rudin DeWoody, Maja Hoffman, Nathalie De Gunzburg, Catherine Petitgas, Wolfgang and Gelila Puck, Howard and Cindy Rachofsky, Don and Mera Rubell, Julia Stoschek and Anita Zabludowicz; Los Angeles-area art collectors Wallis Annenberg, Bill and Maria Bell, Dallas Price-Van Breda, Cliff and Mandy Einstein, Robert Tuttle and Maria Hummer-Tuttle, Mihail Lari, Arthur Lewis, Peter Morton, Eileen Harris Norton, Susan Bay Nimoy, Michael Ovitz, Carolyn Clark Powers, V. Joy Simmons and Hope Warschaw; artists Walead BeshtyAndrea Bowers, Kenturah Davis, Kim Gordon, Alex Israel, Suzanne Lacy, Shirin Neshat, Laura Owens, Bunny Rogers, Alison Saar, Betye Saar, Jim Shaw, Frances Stark, Martine Syms, Henry Taylor, Marnie Weber and Jonas Wood; entertainment industry figures including Justin and Hailey Bieber, James Corden, LL Cool J, Leonardo DiCaprio, Brie Larson, Jennifer Lopez, Mandy Moore, Ryan Murphy, Amy Poehler, Natalie Portman, Alex Rodriguez, Travis Scott, Charlize Theron, Usher and The Weeknd.

Jim Gianopulos, CEO of Paramount Pictures, said, ‘It was an honour once again for us to host Frieze L.A. on the Paramount lot, and see such an outpouring of enthusiasm for this gathering of so many brilliant artists and influential galleries.’

Los Angeles County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas said ‘The success of Frieze L.A. in its second year is another indication and market signal of L.A. County’s well-earned role as a leader of the creative economy whose impact is felt across the globe. Frankly, the creative economy and events like Frieze represent one of our greatest opportunities for the future.’

Sales Reported Across the Board Frieze LA 2020

The Opening Preview on Thursday, February 13, saw swift sales and major placements by numerous exhibitors in the Galleries section of the fair. Younger and established galleries reported exceptional collector enthusiasm and interest in works presented, with many sold-out presentations and numerous sales in the seven-figure range. 

In a co-presentation of works by James Turrell, Kayne Griffin Corcoran and Pace Gallery sold works by the artist in the opening hours of the fair, with most works placed in local collections. Gladstone Gallery made significant sales including a painting by Keith Haring for $3,750,000; Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac reported strong sales including a work by Robert Rauschenberg for $1,350,000 and a work by Robert Longo for $120,000. David Zwirner sold significant works including a Neo Rauch painting for $2,000,000, two works by Carol Bove for $500,000 each and five paintings by Lisa Yuskavage priced from $120,000 to $1,000,000. Hauser & Wirth sold out their entire booth of works by Avery Singer to a significant U.S. institution, with works ranging from $85,000 to $495,000. Galerie Eva Presenhuber sold all works in a solo presentation of Ugo Rondinone. L.A. Louver sold nearly all works in a solo presentation by Alison Saar of sculptures and large-scale prints, with one work entering the collection of a significant American arts foundation. Salon 94 sold out of their exhibition of works by Derrick AdamsCasey Kaplan sold out their booth with works by Jordan Casteel, Jonathan Gardner and Matthew RonaySprüth Magers sold works to prominent collections, including photos by Barbara Kruger, works on paper by George Condo, a sculpture by Sterling Ruby, two works by Analia Saban and sculptures by Jenny Holzer. Seoul-based Kukje Gallery sold works by Ugo RondinoneJulian Opie and Suki Seokyeong Kang. Mexico City-based Gaga sold significant works by Emily Sundblad, Cosima von Bonin, Josef Strau and Vivian Suter. David Kordansky Gallery sold two paintings by Jonas Wood for $500,000 each and a work by Mary Weatherford sold for $310,000. Victoria Miro sold 24 works from a solo presentation of new paintings, sculptures and works on paper by Idris Khan, ranging in price from $30,000 to $150,000. Blum & Poe sold out their booth, including a painting by Mark Grotjahn for $600,000, paintings by Henry Taylor ranging from $100,000 to $120,000 and a work by Aaron Garber-Maikovska for $75,000. Xavier Hufkens sold a picture by Sterling Ruby for $350,000 and two Paul McCarthy works on paper for $250,000 and $200,00. Goodman Gallery sold a significant work on paper by William Kentridge for $400,000, an essential early photograph by Shirin Neshat included in her Broad museum survey exhibition at $125,000, as well as several paintings by emerging Zimbabwean artist Kudzanai Chiuraibetween $60,000 and $80,000.

Frieze LA 2020
Frieze LA 2020

The fair also presented the first Focus LA section in the galleries tent, providing a platform for emerging Los Angeles spaces that have been open 15 years or fewer, underlining Frieze’s commitment to the city’s vibrant cultural landscape. Chateau Shatto had a sold-out booth with works by Aria Dean and Helen JohnsonCharlie James Gallery sold out their booth of works by Frieze Projects artist Gabriella Sanchez. François Ghebaly sold out a solo presentation by Sayre Gomez of one major painting priced at $100,000 and five pylon sculptures priced at $12,000–Gomez’s site-specific installation Tocayo 2020 as part of Frieze Projects was also sold at $100,000. Anat Ebgi sold out of their solo presentation by Greg Ito and Various Small Fires sold out of a solo booth of paintings by Calida Rawles.

The fair also participated in the launch of the Deutsche Bank Frieze Los Angeles 2020 Film Award, which was awarded on Thursday, February 13 to Silvia Lara at a special reception. Lara’s short film Beauty Never Lost was created during a three-month program at Ghetto Film School with other emerging filmmakers. The $10,000 prize was juried by key arts and entertainment figures including Doug Aitken, Shari Frilot, Jeremy Kagan, Sam Taylor-Johnson and Hamza Walker. For more information visit 

Frieze LA 2020 Institutional Attendance

Frieze Los Angeles welcomed local and international museum and institutional groups, including American Friends of the Louvre, The Contemporary Austin, Dia Art Foundation, Garage Museum of Contemporary Art, Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Museu de Arte Moderna de São Paulo (MAM), Palm Springs Art Museum, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA), Serpentine Galleries and Vincent Price Art Museum.

Joanne Heyler, Founding Director of The Broad, said, ‘Frieze Los Angeles built intelligently on the buzz generated by its first edition with this year’s substantial art at the fair and impressive programming all over the city that was compelling and imaginative. The Broad is proud to support Frieze Los Angeles as it quickly becomes a major international draw for collectors, curators, artists and a wide audience of art enthusiasts, further cementing L.A.’s status as a uniquely positioned arts capital.’

James Cuno, President and CEO of the J. Paul Getty Trust, said, ‘By every measure, Frieze LA was a big success. Friends from across the country were here in great number, remarking on the quality and vitality of the fair. It was a big hit, and its popularity is a reflection of L.A.’s increasing stature as an arts destination.’

Hans Ulrich Obrist, Artistic Director of Serpentine Galleries (London), said, ‘We need more conversations led by artists that reach beyond the art world. As the home of Hollywood, Los Angeles is a fitting laboratory for this evolution, and Frieze Los Angeles is a perfect nucleus. It was a pleasure to return to Paramount every day this week, not only to see art and talks and colleagues, but many artists drawn to the energy of the fair. It was a non-stop hub for encounters in L.A., which is always one of the most exciting cities for discoveries.’

Klaus Biesenbach, Director of the Museum of Contemporary Art Los Angeles, said, “For the second time, Frieze brought so much excitement and energy to all the artists and art communities here in Los Angeles. It is wonderful to have guests witness the whole city so alive and celebrate together. As an institution that has played a major role in L.A.’s arts community for over 40 years, MOCA was proud to be a part of the week with our second annual brutally early event that Hans Ulrich Obrist and I hosted and to premiere Gerard & Kelly’s State of. What a great week–I am already looking forward to next year! Frieze Week brings L.A. and the art world together at its best!”

Michael Govan, CEO and Director of Los Angeles County Museum of Art, said, “As last year, and even more this year, under Bettina Korek’s inclusive leadership, Frieze L.A. supported many amazing artists’ projects, talks, and screenings–and inspired museums and galleries through L.A. to expand those offerings with their own programs. Thanks especially to Frieze, this weekend L.A. celebrated artists as well as their art.”

Frieze LA 2020 What the Galleries Said

Among the 75 participating galleries, both local and international galleries applauded the successes and pace of sales of the second edition of the fair.

Marc Glimcher, CEO and President, Pace Gallery, commented ‘In just two years, Frieze has very quickly become a significant event on the art world calendar and a chance to spotlight L.A. At the fair, we celebrated west coast artist James Turrell by collaborating on a presentation of his new works, and capitalized on the Frieze moment to highlight a fundraising drive for his magnum opus, Roden Crater. We were thrilled with the engagement we had from California-based collectors, which included placing several Turrell works in private collections and raising over $3 million in donations towards Roden Crater.’

Frieze LA 2020
Frieze LA 2020

Thaddaeus Ropac, Founder of Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac (London, Paris, Salzburg), said, ‘We were very excited to be heading back to Los Angeles this year and found the fair’s second iteration to have a powerful pull all round, with a growing number of serious collectors, curators and institutions in attendance and well-considered, high-quality presentations throughout. There was a fantastic atmosphere at the preview and the levels of engagement are noticeably high here, with some of the best collectors interested in important artists at the very top end of the market, resulting in significant sales from some of our key artists. It is fantastic to see the fair’s strengthening position in the international art scene and we look forward to returning next year.’

Lisa Spellman, Owner and Director of 303 Gallery (New York), said, ‘Frieze never disappoints! It’s a happy fair with great curated projects, great vibes and great sales!’

Marc Payot, President Hauser & Wirth (London, New York, Somerset, Los Angeles, Zurich, Gstaad, Hong Kong, St. Moritz ), said, ‘Frieze LA is even more dynamic this year. We are thrilled to bring the work of such a highly inventive artist, Avery Singer, to a city which is so identified with experimentation and innovation. We’ve had a long relationship with L.A. and its art ecosystem, and are so proud to belong to the vibrant community in the city. In its second year, Frieze LA has claimed its place as a star in the art world firmament.’

Bo Young Song, Managing Director of Kukje Gallery (Seoul, Busan), said, ‘It was another excellent year for us at Frieze L.A. Even though Frieze L.A. is still a very young fair, the team is incredibly professional and experienced, having already mounted numerous iterations of their London and New York editions. While maintaining its professional integrity, Frieze LA brings to the forefront a unique vibe that is unique to the west coast, and its venue within the Paramount Pictures Studio is unlike any other fair we have participated/visited. Frieze LA is a unique platform where the local and international galleries congregate in harmony, showcasing a greater diversity of contemporary art while maintaining Frieze’s global standard. As this is the only fair our gallery is part of on the west coast, we were able to meet with new clients and art professionals who we otherwise might not encounter in Europe or other parts of the U.S.’

Glenn Scott Wright, Co-director of Victoria Miro (London), said, ‘We have had a great response from the L.A. art community and international collectors alike-it has been a really strong fair for us.’

Fernando Mesta, Owner of Gaga (Mexico City, Los Angeles), said, ‘As a Mexican / Los Angeleno gallery, Frieze proved itself to be a good occasion to introduce our program to our local collectors and the international audiences, the institutional attendance was great and we made great contacts, and we love Los Angeles.’

Casey Kaplan, Founder of Casey Kaplan Gallery (New York), said, ‘We’ve had a very positive experience, both critically and acquisitions-wise. The community we’ve garnered here in L.A. is so supportive, and we are always glad to connect with longtime friends of the gallery plus enthusiastic new collectors. We look forward to returning and continuing the conversations we’ve begun.’

François Ghebaly, Owner of François Ghebaly, said, ‘This has been one of the most successful weeks for art in Los Angeles since the gallery opened. Sayre’s solo presentation at the fair and our gallery shows with Kathleen Ryan and Victoria Gitman received enthusiastic responses. We sold out on the opening days at both the fair and at the gallery.’

Kimberly Davis, Director of L.A. Louver (Los Angeles), said, ‘It’s been fantastic. We’ve made institutional sales along with ones to private foundations, and we’ve nearly sold out of everything.’

David Maupin, Co-founder of Lehmann Maupin (New York, Hong Kong, Seoul), said, ‘Lehmann Maupin was pleased to participate in Frieze L.A. for the second year with a presentation of prestigious works by Liza Lou, Lee Bul, Liu Wei, and McArthur Binion. Frieze L.A. represents an exciting opportunity to show the many Los Angeles-based artists on our roster, such as Liza Lou, in their hometowns. Los Angeles has become one of the key centers of art and culture globally. It’s crucial to be able to present work by our artists in this context. Historically Lehmann Maupin has often looked East, showing many Asian artists in the United States for the first time. Being able to bring the work of artists such as Liu Wei and Lee Bul westward is an important next step in our story.’

Frieze LA 2020
Frieze LA 2020

Olivia Barrett, Owner of Château Shatto (Los Angeles), said, ‘Frieze’s second edition has fulfilled the promise that the inaugural fair inspired. Sales have been brisk and there has been a depth to the conversations about our artists’ practices and exhibition program, augmenting the foundations that were laid last year.’

Maureen Paley, Founder of Maureen Paley (London), remarked at the opening: ‘Frieze has been very productive today. It brought people back to the gallery who we connected to in Los Angeles last year, as well as those that we know well from elsewhere. It was enormously rewarding to have placed a piece by Max Hooper Schneider together with a work by Gillian Wearing in the first minutes of the fair opening with collectors who really are dedicated not only to collecting work but also presenting it in very strong settings once collected. I am grateful to showcase a diverse program that is appreciated here.’

Philomene Magers, Co-owner, Sprüth Magers (Berlin, London, Los Angeles), said, ‘We were thrilled to be a part of Frieze L.A. again this year. L.A. has become a home for the gallery and continues to be for many of our artists, so to have Frieze as our local fair is hugely important to us. It’s been amazing to see how much it has brought to the arts community. This week it drew in many international and U.S. collectors and allowed us to make new connections. Within the first few hours of the preview day we placed several works in outstanding collections. Outside of our booth walls, the fair was also a platform in which our artists, including Barbara Kruger and Andrea Zittel, could present their projects to a wider audience.’

Davida Nemeroff, Owner of Night Gallery (Los Angeles), said, ‘We were thrilled by the success of this year’s Frieze LA. As with last year’s inaugural fair, Frieze LA has demonstrated the strength of L.A.’s art market and the incredible excitement surrounding the creative conversation in this city, especially as reflected among the L.A. galleries.’

Frieze LA 2020 Program

Frieze LA 2020
Frieze LA 2020 All Photos David Agranov © Artlyst 2020

This year’s fair also built upon Frieze’s commitment to celebrating the city’s art community through Frieze Week Los Angeles. Throughout the city, visitors and locals alike saw Barbara Kruger’s expansive Untitled (Questions) project that merged a public awareness campaign with site-specific artwork shown in varying mediums such as street banners, murals, billboards, and print and online advertisements.

An immersive program of artworks, films and performances took over the Paramount backlot with Frieze Projects, curated by Rita Gonzalez (Terri and Michael Smooke Curator and Department Head of Contemporary Art, LACMA) and Pilar Tompkins Rivas (Director, Vincent Price Art Museum). Meanwhile, visibility and invisibility were key themes of the talks and films curated by Venus Lau (Director, K11 Art Foundation) at the Paramount Theatre as part of Frieze Film and Talks.

Art for Justice, the Endeavor Foundation and Getty presented an evening reception and panel conversation on Monday, February 10 to launch Frieze Week, featuring critical discussions on connecting the arts community with the broader possibilities of philanthropy. The evening saw the launch the Frieze Impact Prize, in partnership with the Art for Justice Fund, which will recognize and provide access and visibility to justice-involved artists Selected through a national, open competition, the winner of the Frieze Impact Prize be presented at Frieze New York 2020 and receive $25,000. 

Frieze was founded in 1991 by Matthew Slotover and Amanda Sharp, with the launch of frieze magazine, the leading international magazine of contemporary art and culture. In 2003, Sharp and Slotover launched Frieze London art fair, which takes place each October in The Regent’s Park, London. In 2012, they launched Frieze New York, which occurs each May in Randall’s Island Park, and Frieze Masters, which coincides with Frieze London in October and is dedicated to art from ancient to modern. In 2018, Frieze launched Frieze Los Angeles, which opened February 14–17, 2019 at Paramount Pictures Studios, Los Angeles. In 2016, Frieze entered into a strategic partnership with Endeavor a global entertainment, sports and content company.


Read More About Frieze LA 2020

Visit Frieze LA 2020