Los Angeles times: frieze los angeles will use paramount backlot to explore truth, lies and hollywood

Deborah Vankin, Los Angeles Times, December 17, 2019

You may remember the psychic art advisor counseling eager collectors in a New York-style brownstone. Or the hand- painted laundry dangling on clotheslines over the rain-slick streets of what appeared to be Manhattan but really was the Paramount Studios backlot.

Frieze Los Angeles, which debuted in February, was not your typical art fair. Sure, there was the 62,000-square-foot tent featuring 70 galleries drawing artists, collectors, celebrities and lookie-loos daily. But the fair also had Frieze Projects, 15 site-specific installations, most by California artists, scattered throughout the backlot.

So what to expect next year?

Frieze, which returns to Paramount Feb. 13 to 16, announced Tuesday the artist lineup for Frieze Projects 2020. Los Angeles County Museum of Art curator Rita Gonzalez and Vincent Price Art Museum Director Pilar Tompkins Rivas are organizing this portion of the fair with an eye toward more national and global artists, Gonzalez said. The projects, she added, will address issues of representation, identity and myth.

“We found [Frieze Projects] really compelling last year, and being on the backlot, there’s a real allure and magic to it,” Gonzalez said. “But given our own interests as curators, we also wanted to bring in aspects of what Paramount and the media industry are going through right now. We’re all talking about representation — of women, people of color, LGBTQ — there’s a lack of representation, still, in the 21st century, from our media-makers. And that’s true, as well, in the visual arts.”

Frieze Projects 2020 will include 16 site-specific performances, sculptures and installations. 

Israeli-born Naama Tsabar will stage a feminist-minded sonic performance, “Untitled (Double Face),” that riffs on a certain kind of testosterone-infused, rock ‘n’ roll guitar solo — think Jimi Hendrix or Eddie Van Halen. Three times a day, she and another female performer will move in unison around the backlot while playing a sculpture Tsabar made of two guitars grafted together, face to face.