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Frieze Masters

Viola Frey: Works on Paper & Small Sculpture, 1980-1989


October 8-11, 2020

Viola Frey Untitled (Woman Seated and Leaning Over II), 1985
Viola Frey Untitled (Seated Nude and Figurines), 1985
Viola Frey Untitled (Pink Ears and Red Lips Bricolage), 1984-85
Viola Frey Untitled (Nude Woman on Lying Man), 1985
Viola Frey Untitled (Man with Meissen Figurine), 1982
Viola Frey Nude Man with Knee on Chair, 1987-88
Viola Frey Untitled (Standing Nude Woman), 1986-87
Viola Frey Untitled (Sketch with Three Grandmother Figures), 1981-84
Viola Frey Untitled, 1986
Viola Frey Artist's Mind/Studio/World: Man in Brown Suit and Pink Angel, 1988

Press Release

Visit the FRIEZE MASTERS Online Viewing Room

Over the course of her five-decade career, Viola Frey produced a body of artwork ranging from ceramic and bronze sculptures, to paintings and drawings, as well as exploring working in glass and photography. For Frieze Masters, GAVLAK will highlight the artist's largely overlooked yet equally impressive practice of working with graphite, acrylic, oil, and pastel on paper. Viola Frey (1933–2004), a painter and sculptor, was born and raised in a farm in Lodi, CA. The artist went on to study at the California College of Arts and Crafts, where she graduated with a BFA in 1956. She then studied in New Orleans under Mark Rothko and George Rickey at Tulane University and left for New York in 1957 before finishing her graduate degree. There she joined Katherine Choy who had recently founded the Clay Art Center in Port Chester. Viola Frey was a pioneer in bridging the barrier between craft and fine art to push forward the medium of ceramic sculpture in the 1960s and 1970s. A lifelong teacher and maker, she retired as professor emerita from California College of the Arts in 1999, co-founded Artists’ Legacy Foundation in 2000, and continued to work until she passed away at the age of 70 in Oakland, CA. Her works are included in the collections of the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York, the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.

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