Frieze 2022: In times of ugly, the best protest is beauty


We are living in an ugly time. The pandemic, war and extreme politics take control of global population. The wealthiest human beings, like Elon Musk, are experimenting on our civilisation with new ideas and new technologies, stirring social media, inciting huge number of followers and causing chaos. Science is enslaving minds with algorithms – you are what you read, and you only read what you want to read. It is the first time post WWII generations may realistically face a huge man-made disaster coming, and we have to protest.



So we hold signs, take the streets and demand “Just Stop Oil”. What a great cause but, we vandalise paintings, buildings and memorials, block traffic and delay travels, proclaiming by damaging. Is that the right thing to do? In the wave of movement, art becomes smaller, and beauty more fragile. A world famous masterpiece can be destroyed in a blink of time by just two ordinary college students, who may think they are special enough to be our saviours.



Giving this background, an art show as good as Frieze 2022 is more precious than ever. We are able to see beautiful things again, rediscover different cultures from art, look for funny works which will make us smile, appreciate life and its many forms.

It is the perfect escape we all need in this ugly time, and the beautiful protest to the ugliness we shall never get used to…



The Frieze fair and its sibling, Frieze Masters attract over 60,000 people each year, and this year there were more than 200 galleries exhibiting. Frieze Masters, which is located 15 minutes’ walk away in the same Regent’s Park, combines both contemporary and historical art, along with rare objects which this year included a 154-million-year-old Camptosaurus skeleton and a meteorite rock. Sadie Coles HQ, Hauser & Wirth, Pace, Maureen Paley, White Cube were among the major galleries represented in the 2022 edition of Frieze and Frieze Masters. 

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