Preview: Wednesday, October 13–Friday, October 15
Public days: Saturday, October 16–Sunday, October 17
Lehmann Maupin returns to Frieze London 2021 for the 17th year with a curated presentation of two artists—Liza Lou and Do Ho Suh—who have responded to the events of the past 18 months through interrogating their relationship to home, the passage of time, and loss of control brought on by the Covid 19 pandemic. The presentation explores the parallels in the work of the two artists, both of whose labor-intensive practices utilize the metier of craft to transform material.
Anchoring the booth is Do Ho Suh’s Hub-2, Breakfast Corner, 260-7, Sungbook-Dong, Sungboo-Ku, Seoul, Korea (2018), a one-to-one scale reproduction of a breakfast nook in the artist’s prior home in Seoul. The artist creates these Hubs – always transitional spaces such as hallways and corridors – to explore notions of home, memory, marginality and the correlation between psychic and physical space. Suh, who spent lockdown at his home in London, found himself returning to his Specimen series—exquisitely sewn fabric versions of household objects found consistently, but with subtle variations from country to country, in homes around the world. Each Specimen has been precisely modelled from somewhere the artist has previously lived or worked. Confronted by charged complexities around touch, Suh’s Specimens were imbued with newfound meaning. As Suh explains, “our relationship with quotidian objects within the home – the handles, switches and sockets that punctuate the anatomy of our buildings and that we touch all the time – has become fraught, but we’ve also become intensely familiarised with those forms and spaces.” The presentation also includes new works made using manipulated architectural modeling programs that challenge notions of authorship and control.
Similarly, Liza Lou—who recently built a studio in Joshua Tree, California—responds to the backdrop of the California high desert as her newfound home and surroundings through intricately hand-sewn painting and sculptural work using hundreds of thousands of glass beads. Debuting at Frieze London is Tree of Forgiveness (2021), where wave-like patterns draw a conceptual connection to landscape and become pictorially charged with changes in natural light over the course of the day. Lou describes her process as one in which she responds to her immediate surroundings. “Often when I’m working, a limitation will arise that makes what I’m trying to do impossible, and that’s always the place that leads to something new.”
Coupled with this painting, the gallery will feature Carbon Gunmetal | Divide (2012-2014) from the Solid|Divide series—where the artist explores the emotive potential of pure color and the beauty created by the oils of the human hand in contact with the glass beads. Coinciding with the fair is the artistʼs solo exhibition Desire Lines, on view through November 6, at the gallery’s space located at 1 Cromwell Place in South Kensington.
Together, Lou’s and Suh’s intricately sewn works share a careful approach to their process-driven work, which oftentimes use non-traditional materials like polyester fabric and glass beads to elevate long-standing craft practices. Furthermore, complex concepts of home, belonging, and cultural identity are challenged by bringing two contrasting, yet additive bodies of work together.
Additional works on view include gallery artists Hernan Bas, Billy Childish, Gilbert & George, Lee Bul, Angel Otero, Alex Prager, and Erwin Wurm.