See the Art and Performances of the Calder Foundation's Frieze Week Pop-Up Show

Neptune performing
(© 2013 Brad Jones)

Smack dab in the middle of the madness of Frieze Week, last Saturday saw the return of what has become an annual tradition in New York during during fairs: A cool pop-up show sponsored by the Alexander Calder Foundation. The events typically combine a program of freewheeling experimental performance and film with a disorientingly amazing selection of art, all in some kind of offbeat environment (the art this year was curated by Katherine Cohn; the film by Victoria Brooks). We branded last year’s show, held in the McKittrick Hotel (aka the “Sleep No More” space), “our favorite Frieze Week event” — and this year did not disappoint either.

Taking place over the course of a single day at the ballroom of the High Line Hotel, the show centered on an installation of artworks displayed on a thicket of temporary walls assembled of scrap cardboard. From one of these lovably funky dividers, a wonderful David Hammons construction of African masks stared out at you as you entered; around a corner, a Noble & Webster sculpture that uses beer cans to cast the silhouette of a skyline could be glimpsed by crouching down and looking into a floor-level cubby. Perhaps the most memorable flourish was the inclusion of a small Kurt Schwitters collage — from Alexander Calder’s own collection — right when you entered the space, viewable when you raised up a cardboard flap, like the world’s most blue-chip advent calendar.


As for the live entertainment, the day's program was well worth hanging around for — and many did — featuring the likes of Neptune, the Vertical Foliage Orchestra, and Diagram A. The Anti-Pop Consortium's ultra-cool hip-hop formed a kind of a climax of the evening. Don’t miss the Calder show next year — in the meantime, here are the highlights, from a performance of Christine Sun Kim's “Face Opera” to some delicate Eva Hesse works you will probably never see again and a plate of chicken by Darren Bader.

To see works from the Calder Foundation's “They Might Well Have Been Remnants of the Boat,” click on the slideshow.