Komal Shah: Top 5 Picks from Frieze Viewing Room

The influential collector selects her highlights  including works by Kevin Beasley, Mary Heilmann, Arghavan Khosravi, Gladys Nilsson and Lorna Simpson

Lorna Simpson, Chicago, 2020
Gallery Hauser & Wirth

Lorna Simpson, Chicago, 2020. Ink and screenprint on gessoed fiberglass. Unique. 170.2 x 127 x 3.6 cm / 67 x 50 x 1 3/8 in. © Lorna Simpson. Courtesy the artist and Hauser & Wirth. Photo: James Wang 

Lorna Simpson, Chicago, 2020. Ink and screenprint on gessoed fiberglass. Unique. 170.2 x 127 x 3.6 cm / 67 x 50 x 1 3/8 in. © Lorna Simpson. Courtesy the artist and Hauser & Wirth. Photo: James Wang 

This body of works superimpose faces from ads in ebony or jet, highlighting a universal stereotype of beauty that these faces confirm to. I remember being very taken with similar works in her show “Darkening” in 2019 at Hauser & Wirth, but this work has already evolved in its painterly punch.

Mary Heilmann, Night Swimmer, 1998
Gallery 303

Mary Heilmann, Night Swimmer, 1998. Courtesy of Gallery 303

Mary Heilmann, Night Swimmer, 1998. Courtesy of Gallery 303

A brilliant colorist, Mary Heilmann pays homage to her two loves - the California coast with its the ultramarine  waters and white froth, and music, as in the REM song. Fantastic example of how she captures a place, moment and mood. No wonder she continues to inspire so many artists today!

 

Kevin Beasley, Untitled, 2018
Casey Kaplan Gallery (main section)

Kevin Beasley, Untitled, 2018. Polyurethane resin, foam, housedresses, kaftans, t-shirts79 x 79 x 39” / 200.66 x 200.66 x 99.06cm. Photo: Jason Wyche. ©Kevin Beasley. Image courtesy the artist and Casey Kaplan, New York

Kevin Beasley, Untitled, 2018. Polyurethane resin, foam, housedresses, kaftans, t-shirts79 x 79 x 39” / 200.66 x 200.66 x 99.06cm. Photo: Jason Wyche. ©Kevin Beasley. Image courtesy the artist and Casey Kaplan, New York

This vibrant, powerful free standing slab incorporates  his poignant "ghost" sculptures made from family housedresses, with a visual artistry that is unparalleled. Every side and corner holds a new surprise; and the back is simply stunning.

 

Gladys Nilsson, Tester 2019
Garth Greenan Gallery

Gladys Nilsson, Tester 2019. Courtesy of Garth Greenan Gallery

Gladys Nilsson, Tester 2019. Courtesy of Garth Greenan Gallery

Playful and satirical, with a dense color palette, this work tickles the imagination. Is the woman (in her seat of power) testing the waters? A great example of an ex-“Hairy Who” artist who continues to make incredible work at 80.

 

Arghavan Khosravi, The Balance, 2020
Rachel Uffner Gallery

Arghavan Khosravi, The Balance, 2019, acrylic on found fabric mounted on wood panel, 40 1/2 x 31 1/2 in (102.9 x 80 cm).. Courtesy the artist and Rachel Uffner Gallery

Arghavan Khosravi, The Balance, 2019, acrylic on found fabric mounted on wood panel, 40 1/2 x 31 1/2 in (102.9 x 80 cm).. Courtesy the artist and Rachel Uffner Gallery

I have been watching this young artist solidify her artistic language with a combination of Persian motifs and global politics. I love the clever use of a  monochromatic palette and juxtaposition of the  paisley collage to sharpen the focus on the tough “balancing act” for women.

Other artists of interest (if I had a top 10) would include: Torkwase Dyson, Kapwani Kiwanga, Carrie Moyer, Harmony Hammond and Maja Ruznic.

Read our interview with Komal Shah here