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Frieze week highlights: powerhouse publishing from Chicago and power naps in Fitzrovia

1 October 2019

With hundreds of exhibitions and events vying for your attention in London during Frieze week, Apollo’s editors pick out the shows they don’t want to miss

What remains of the Brutalist London landmark that is now 180 The Strand has become a fixture of Frieze week. This year brings the latest version of Theaster Gates’s Black Image Corporation, an installation-based project examining the Johnson Publishing Company (until 27 October). Gates delves into the archives of what was once the largest African-American-owned publishing company in the United States (and owner of the monthlies Ebony and Jet), which filed for bankruptcy last year after 77 years in operation. Alongside this, Gates has designed a series of spaces that will feature his own work in different media, as well as a programme of films chosen by Ava DuVerney and a DJ booth where records from the artist’s collection will be played (a number of events will also take place at The Showroom in Marylebone). For the first two days (2–3 October) the show is exclusively open to members of Prada Mode, an itinerant ‘social club’ held alongside art fairs around the world, which is likely only to increase the buzz.

Public Notice (film still; 2019), Theaster Gates.

Public Notice (2019), Theaster Gates. Photo: Chris Strong

As usual, there’s a glut of gallery shows opening, too. I’m looking forward to seeing Tschabalala Self’s exuberant paintings and works on paper at Pilar Corrias (2 October–9 November) and Jonathan Baldock’s uncanny ceramics at Stephen Friedman (27 September–9 November). The latter gallery has also found a somewhat more unusual location – Fitzrovia Chapel – for a week-long installation of Baldock’s My biggest fear is that someone will crawl into it (2017), a canopied bed on which visitors can lay while listening to an audio recording by the artist’s mother (2–5 October). Handy if you find yourself suffering from a spot of ‘fair-tigue’ as the week progresses.

Skirt (2019), Tschabalala Self.

Skirt (2019), Tschabalala Self. Courtesy the artist and Pilar Corrias, London

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