Frieze Taps Veteran Art Dealer Christine Messineo to Lead Its New York and Los Angeles Fairs

Messineo is the latest in a series of executive staff changes at Frieze.

Christine Messineo. Photo: Ramsey Alderson. Courtesy of Frieze.
Christine Messineo. Photo: Ramsey Alderson. Courtesy of Frieze.

Frieze has appointed gallery veteran Christine Messineo to run its two U.S. fairs, it announced today.

Taking up her new position at the end of this month, Messineo will oversee both Frieze Los Angeles and Frieze New York. She succeeds Rebecca Ann Siegel, who served as director of Americas for the company before stepping down in August of this year.

Previously, Messineo served as a director of Hannah Hoffman Gallery in Los Angeles, where she’s currently based, and a partner at Bortolami Gallery in New York. Both experiences, she explained, will inform her new gig.

“Having participated in fairs as a gallerist for more than a decade, I am of course mindful of what makes a fair successful and what really makes the difference,” Messineo told Artnet News. “I have always admired how well Frieze executes the layout of their fairs, and the pleasure that you can get from just walking through the space. As a participating gallery, it’s those details that matter.”

Siegel’s decision to leave Frieze this past summer was just the latest in a series of high-profile departures at the media and events company. Prior to that, the former head of the New York fair, Loring Randolph, left in 2020 to become the director of the Nancy A. Nasher and David J. Haemisegger Collection in Dallas. Bettina Korek, the previous executive director of Frieze Los Angeles, departed to become C.E.O. of London’s Serpentine Galleries in 2019.

Most recently, Messineo founded and helmed “Plan Your Vote,” an initiative that produced free, downloadable artworks encouraging people to vote. More than 60 artists, including Hank Willis Thomas, Christine Sun Kim, and Jenny Hozer, participated ahead of the 2020 election. 

Frieze’s board director Victoria Siddall praised Messineo’s career in a statement: “Her experience of working with galleries, and of running the ground-breaking ‘Plan Your Vote’ initiative, along with her deep knowledge and commitment to both New York and L.A. make her the perfect person to take these fairs into the future.”

Messineo’s will helm her first fair early next year with the third edition of Frieze Los Angeles, set for February 17-20 at 9900 Wilshire Boulevard, Beverly Hills. Frieze New York is scheduled for May 18-22 at the Shed. 

“As we emerge from the pandemic we have an opportunity to shape how fairs serve, engage, and offer visibility to our community,” Messineo said. “Both Frieze New York and Frieze Los Angeles reflect the cultural landscape of those cities, so I am looking to further evolve that aspect of their identities and really consider how to best represent the galleries local to each fair. We have all experienced how rewarding it is to have considered conversations, to create, and so that is another development that we’re looking to cultivate into the future.”

 


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