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Galleries have reported stronger than anticipated sales at Frieze New York's Viewing Rooms, which opened to VIPs on 6 May. The online event, initiated after the physical fair was cancelled due to COVID-19, opens to the public from 8-15 May.

Frieze New York's VR section 'Electric' in 2019. Photo by Mark Blower. Courtesy: Mark Blower/Frieze.

According to ARTnews, more than half of Gagosian's Katharina Grosse solo show sold in the first few hours of the fair at prices ranging from €40,000-145,000. Hauser & Wirth sold 16 works on opening day, including George Condo's Distanced Figures 3 (2020) for US $2 million and Rashid Johnson's Untitled Anxious Man (2014) for $650,000.

David Zwirner also sold several works, including a Wolfgang Tillmans for $220,000 and a Suzan Frecon for $400,000, while Pace Gallery sold works by artists including Loie Hollowell, Nigel Cooke, Adam Pendleton and Kohei Nawa.

'The strong early sales and, candidly, the entire experience of the virtual presentation exceeded our expectations,' said Ales Ortuzar, whose gallery, Ortuzar Projects, sold a 1972 painting by Dororthy Iannone for $150,000.

Lehmann Maupin cofounder Rachel Lehmann said she felt 'the art fair buzz' despite the switch to online. The gallery sold Catherine Opie's Rainbow Falls #2 (2015) for $30,000, and reported a long waitlist for work by Billie Zangewa, who we interviewed in the magazine last month.

In addition to the gallery presentations, Frieze New York's Viewing Rooms feature special exhibitions including: 'Chicago Tribute', a presentation of female artists from the windy city such as Gladys Nilsson and Clare Rojas; 'Diálogos', celebrating Latinx artists including Adriana Bustos, Mestre Didi and Anna Maria Maiolino; and the Bjarne Melgaard virtual reality work My Trip (2019).

'Our mission this year for Frieze New York was to create relevant and innovative programming that was collaborative and community-building,' said Loring Randolph director of Frieze New York. 'I'm really excited to say that all of our regular and special programming is present on Frieze Viewing Room.' —[O]

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