Frieze Talks 2019
Talks are free and available on a first-come, first-served basis Friday - Sunday in the Talks Lounge
With Frieze Talks, Tom Eccles and Amy Zion (CCS Bard College) spotlight writers who process current events and political, social, and ecological changes through the novel or genre-defying formats in conversation with contemporary artists. For each talk, writers were asked to invite an artist as interlocutor (or vice versa). Past talks have included Fred Moten in conversation with Sondra Perry, Elif Batuman with Negar Azimi, and Yuri Herrera with Abraham Cruzvillegas and Carlos Amorales. Talks are free to attend and take place in the Talks Lounge. See fair map for location.
Friday, May 3
Simone Leigh (artist) in conversation with Saidiya Hartman (writer, scholar)
Simone Leigh is an American artist from Chicago. She works in various media including sculpture, video installation and social practice. In 2018, she won the Guggenheim’s Hugo Boss Prize. Leigh’s singular vision unifies a body of work in sculpture, video, performance, and social projects that deftly joins theory, practice, and form in a tightly coherent oeuvre characterized by a close engagement with the body, the symbolic activation of material, and narrative references to African diasporic histories. Her current exhibition, Loophole of Retreat opened at the Guggenheim Museum on April 19.
Saidiya Hartman is the author of Wayward Lives, Beautiful Experiments, and Lose Your Mother: A Journey Along the Atlantic Slave Route. Her first book, Scenes of Subjection: Terror, Slavery, and Self-Making in Nineteenth-Century America, is an examination of, among other topics, the intersection of slavery, gender, and the development of progressivism in the United States through the exploration of black genealogies, memory, and the lingering effects of racism. She is a Guggenheim Fellow and has been a Cullman Fellow and Fulbright Scholar. Hartman is a professor at Columbia University and lives in New York.
Friday, May 3
Sheila Heti (writer) in conversation with Josephine Decker (performer, filmmaker)
Sheila Heti is the author of eight book books of fiction and non-fiction, including her most recent novel, Motherhood, which was chosen as one of the top books of 2018 by the New York Times book critics. Her novel, How Should a Person Be? was named one of the 12 “New Classics of the 21st century” by Vulture. It was a New York Times Notable Book, a best book of the year in The New Yorker, and was cited by Time as “one of the most talked-about books of the year.” Heti lives in Toronto.
Josephine Decker is an American actor, filmmaker and performer. Her newest feature Madeline’s Madeline world premiered at Sundance 2018. She’s best known for directing her first feature film, the experimental psychological thriller Butter on the Latch, the experimental erotic thriller Thou Wast Mild and Lovely.
Saturday, May 4
Writer Aruna D’Souza discusses her most recent book Whitewalling: Art, Race and Protest in 3 Acts (2018) with Nico Wheadon (Director, Public Programs & Community Engagement, Studio Museum in Harlem) and Sable Elyse Smith (artist).
Aruna D’Souza writes about modern and contemporary art, intersectional feminisms and other forms of politics, her most recent book “Whitewalling: Art, Race and Protest in 3 Acts” was named one of the best art books of 2018 by the New York Times. In Whitewalling, D'Souza blends art history, personal essay, and journalism to consider three exhibitions in the US which sparked black artists and writers and their allies to organize vigorous responses through public protest.
Nico Wheadon is the director of public programs and community engagement at the Studio Museum in Harlem, where she designs and delivers adult programs that engage audiences, activate partnerships, and deepen the impact of the Museum’s mission. In July, she will become the inaugural Executive Director of NXTHVN, a new art space in New Haven, CT.
Sable Elyse Smith is an interdisciplinary artist, writer, and educator based in New York & Richmond, Virginia. Using video, sculpture, photography, and text, she points to the carceral, the personal, the political, and the quotidian to speak about a violence that is largely unseen, and potentially imperceptible. Her work has been featured at MoMA PS1, New Museum, The Studio Museum in Harlem, JTT, Rachel Uffner Gallery, and Recess Assembly, New York; Yerba Buena Center for the Arts and Artist Television Access, San Francisco, CA; Birkbeck Cinema in collaboration with the Serpentine Galleries, London. Her writing has been published in Radical Teacher, Studio Magazine and Affidavit and she is currently working on her first book, in addition to publishing numerous artist books. Smith has received awards from Creative Capital, Fine Arts Work Center, the Queens Museum, Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, Rema Hort Mann Foundation, the Franklin Furnace Fund, and Art Matters. She is currently Assistant Professor of Sculpture & Extended Media at the University of Richmond.
Saturday, May 4
Andrew Durbin (writer) in conversation with T.J. Wilcox (artist)
Andrew Durbin is and American poet, novelist and Senior Editor at frieze magazine, he co-founded Company Gallery and served as the Talks Curator at the Poetry Project. In September 2017, Durbin released his first full-length novel, titled MacArthur Park. The book’s plot loosely follows a fictional poet and art writer living in New York during and after the landfall of Hurricane Sandy in New York City in 2012.
T.J. Wilcox is an artist born Seattle, Washington, and lives in New York. He works primarily in video and film in which he explores the way the personal narratives, cultural histories and their surrounding environments converge and intersect. His work has been the subject of solo exhibitions at institutions including: the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; Grand Rapids Art Museum, Michigan; Carthage Hall, Lismore Castle Arts, Waterford, Ireland; Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam; and Kunstverein Munich, Munich. His films have been screened at the Museum of Modern Art, New York and the Tate Modern, London, and he participated in the 2015 Biennale de Lyon and the 2004 Whitney Biennial.
Sunday, May 5
Valeria Luiselli (writer) in conversation with Terence Gower (artist)
Valeria Luiselli is an award-winning Mexican author living in the United States. Her 2019 novel Lost Children Archive was described by the New York Times a a “mold-breaking new classic”. Several of Luiselli’s books are borne out of real-world collaborations. The Story of My Teeth (2015) was first written in serial for workers in a Jumex juice factory in Mexico as part of a commission from Galería Jumex. Her nonfiction work Tell Me How It Ends: An Essay in 40 Questions (2017) is based on her experiences volunteering as an interpreter for young Central American migrants seeking legal status in the United States. The book was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award in Criticism in 2017. Her work with asylum-seeking children from Latin America also informs the central plot of Lost Children Archive.
Terence Gower is a Canadian visual artist based in New York City. In the past decade, his work has focused on a critical re-reading of the modern movement and its utopian bent. His research on the post-war period and has led to a search for models from the past that might still be relevant today, is fueled by a desire to reexamine the notion of progress—a term corrupted by the excesses of technological modernism. Gower works across many media, including video, sculpture, drawing, photography, and architecture. He has exhibited extensively in New York and internationally and has garnered many awards and fellowships including a John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Fellowship, Smithsonian Artists Research Fellowship, and a Canada Council Long Term Grant.