OPINION: Ai Weiwei And Anish Kapoor Inseparable At Frieze London 2015

Ai Weiwei

Artlyst is again attending Frieze week, the 13th edition of Frieze London taking place in The Regent’s Park, from 14 to 17 October 2015. Having recently attended Ai Weiwei and Anish Kapoor’s march, after the artists joined forces for a walk across London, striding down London’s Piccadilly for an eight-mile journey to show solidarity with refugees around the world; we were interested to see what Lisson had put forward from the artists at their Frieze stand this year – after Ai and Kapoor had recently professed their mutual admiration, subsequent friendship, and collaboration.

In fact collaboration of sorts is nothing new for the two artistic greats; as Kapoor told Artlyst as we walked together to the Olympic stadium in Stratford, site of the artist’s Orbit tower, “I dedicated a work to Ai Weiwei, a few years ago then he made a video, Gangnam style, then I made one. The moment his was banned – there was a solidarity of action to show that his video was still online. We only met recently, only last week, and feel an empathy towards this cause – in that I’ve been active in it for some time – I asked Weiwei to join me, and here we are together!”

At Frieze London (Booth B5), Lisson seems to have remembered the recent collaboration by the artists, placing their works in situ with each other, focusing on the relationship between colour and material juxtaposing the two artists differing sculptural languages. The stand presentation also includes works by Lawrence Weiner, Richard Long, Jorinde Voigt, Allora & Calzadilla and Stanley Whitney, who makes his debut with the gallery in his first solo exhibition in Milan this October.

The Iron Root by Ai Weiwei, is a cast iron sculpture of a tree root sprayed in purple car paint, closely connected to the trees currently on display at the Royal Academy of Arts in London for Ai’s retrospective and celebration of the artist becoming a Royal Academician; juxtaposed with the carbon monochrome reflections from the concave sculpture Untitled (Storm Grey) 2015 by Kapoor. The works remind us of the strength of these artists creations, both seemingly effortless in their existence; and although not as brash and obvious as other works on show, this subtle juxtaposition is one of the definite little treats of Frieze London this year.

Words: Paul Black, photo: P A Black © 2015

Frieze London 2015 – Booth B5 – 14 to 17 October 2015


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