Frieze Foundation


Frieze Foundation is a non-profit organisation established in 2003 and is responsible for the curated programme at Frieze Art Fair, comprising artist commissions, talks, films, music and education.

Frieze Foundation is funded by the European Commission’s Culture 2007 programme and Arts Council England.



What is Frieze Foundation?
Frieze Foundation is a non-profit organisation, which was established the same year as the Frieze Art Fair (2003). The Foundation is responsible for the curated programme at Frieze London, which includes: Frieze Projects, Frieze Music, Frieze Film, Frieze Talks and the Family Space. In 2011, the Foundation introduced the Emdash Award for emerging artists living outside the UK as part of the Frieze Projects programme.

How is Frieze Foundation funded?
The Foundation receives funding from a number of sources including grant bodies such as the Arts Council, England; Australia Council for the Arts; Frame Finland; Institut Français; Austrian Cultural Forum. Specific areas also receive sponsorship – for example, Cartier sponsored Frieze Projects from 2005–2010 and the Emdash Foundation are current supporters.

Who runs the curatorial programme at the fair?
Frieze Foundation is curated by Nicola Lees. It was curated previously by Sarah McCrory, from 2010 to 2012, Neville Wakefield, from 2007 to 2009, and Polly Staple, from 2003 to 2006.

Can I make a project at the fair?

The curatorial programme is carefully considered many months before the fair. For artists not known to the curator, the best route to show a project at the fair is via an application to the Emdash Award.

What is Frieze Projects?
Frieze Projects is a programme of artists’ commissions presented annually at Frieze London. This year Nicola Lees curates the specially commissioned projects as well as the Emdash Award. From 2010 to 2012 Frieze Projects was curated by Sarah McCrory.

What is the Emdash Award?
The Emdash Award for emerging artists living outside the UK is a major initiative in collaboration with Gasworks and supported by the Emdash Foundation. Emdash is a not-for-profit foundation dedicated to promoting new ideas across disciplines from artistic and cultural projects to scientific research. Founded by Andrea Dibelius in 2010, Emdash’s activities are motivated by philanthropy, a commitment to supporting new ideas and emerging talent and a love for the arts. The Emdash Foundation will aim to support artists on a long-term basis.

What is Frieze Music?
Frieze Music is part of the curated programme at Frieze London. In 2013, American composer, singer and performer Meredith Monk presents a performance at London’s Cecil Sharp House, co-commissioned by Frieze Foundation and Liverpool Biennial. The first edition of Frieze Music was initiated in YEAR by Dan Fox, Co-Editor of frieze magazine, and Steve Mackey, producer and musician. Frieze Music’s varied programme has featured bands, avant-garde classical composer Karlheinz Stockhausen and pop series, such as that co-ordinated by Franz Ferdinand in 2004.

What is Frieze Film?
Frieze Film is a programme of artist films commissioned by Frieze Foundation and broadcast on Channel 4’s art strand ‘Random Acts’. In 2013, Frieze Film is co-commissioned with EMPAC / Experimental Media and Performing Arts Centre at Rensselaer Polytechnic and is supported by Channel 4.

What are Frieze Talks?
Frieze Talks is a daily programme taking place at Frieze London and includes keynote lectures, panel debates and discussions featuring leading art-world figures, philosophers, and critical theorists. Frieze Talks is presented by Frieze Foundation in collaboration with frieze magazine.

What is Frieze Family Space?
The Family Space is part of the Frieze Foundation’s programme at Frieze London. It is developed for an audience of young people and adults alike. In 2013, the Family Space hosts a site-specific project by artist Angelo Plessas, The Temple of Play.

Does Frieze Foundation produce any publications?
Frieze published Frieze Projects: Artists’ Commissions and Talks 2003–2005 as a record of the work of Frieze Foundation, featuring essays on the commissioned projects and texts from the lectures and panel discussions. The book serves as a valuable introduction to the critical debates in contemporary art. A second book in this series was published in 2009, entitled Frieze Projects and Frieze Talks 2006–2008, and features artists from Mike Nelson to Richard Prince and speakers from Dave Hickey to Adrian Piper.
Frieze Foundation contributes annually to the Frieze London Catalogue with in-depth interviews with the commissioned artists.

What is Frieze Projects East?
Frieze Foundation curated and produced six new public art projects as part of the London 2012 Festival, the finale of the Cultural Olympiad. Situated throughout east London, the series is known as Frieze Projects East. The series was programmed by Frieze Foundation’s previous curator, Sarah McCrory. The projects took place in the six east London Host Boroughs for the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games: Barking & Dagenham, Greenwich, Hackney, Newham, Tower Hamlets and Waltham Forest.


Frieze Foundation

Frieze Foundation is a non-profit organisation established in 2003 and is responsible for the curated programme at Frieze London, comprising artist commissions, talks, films, music and education.

Frieze Foundation is supported by



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