Today, Frieze reveals details of the inaugural Frieze Artadia Prize, a new initiative launched in partnership with the celebrated national non-profit Artadia providing a New York-based artist with the opportunity to realize a major new work at Frieze New York. Jessica Vaughn has been named as the recipient of the prize and will debut her selected commission at this year’s fair, which runs May 17th–21st, 2023 at The Shed. The new partnership continues Frieze New York’s legacy of collaboration with local non-profits and artists.
The prize recognizes the work of a New York-based artist who has previously benefited from the Artadia
Awards program, enabling them to realize a new site-specific commission at Frieze New York. Vaughn’s
proposal was selected by jurors: Sohrab Mohebbi (Director of New York’s SculptureCenter) and Franklin
Sirmans (Director of Miami’s Perez Art Museum) who regarded the project as particularly apt in its criticality and awareness of the context of this public platform.
‘As we draw close to our 25th anniversary, it is an important moment to celebrate Artadia’s legacy of elevating the careers of the most groundbreaking artists of our time. Given that Frieze is a global platform for showcasing talent and a place of discovery, this partnership is an opportunity to proudly amplify Artadia’s work, celebrate our to-date nearly 400 Awardees, and to collaborate on the inaugural Frieze Artadia Prize. We are excited to highlight Jessica Vaughn and her incisive interrogation of the institutional politics of labor—in this case, the United States Postal Service— which will culminate in this large-scale commission, which is such a fitting platform for the public to experience and reflect on.’
Titled The Internet of Things, Vaughn’s Frieze Artadia Prize commission draws on the US postal system to
spotlight the organizational structures that underlie late-stage capitalism. In a process that began during the pandemic and lasted until earlier this year, Vaughn mailed letters via the US Postal Service to a series of locations, each marking a site of leisure, commerce, or an act of public violence. These include Disney World, Prospect Park, Silicon Valley offices, malls, and the gated community in Sanford, Florida where Trayvon Martin was murdered in 2012. By intentionally mislabelling the letters, Vaughn was able to ensure their return, and each now bears the marks, digital and handwritten, of passing through the various stages of the postal system. Images of both the interior and exterior of these envelopes, printed onto strips of canvas and linen, will be on view at The Shed throughout the fair’s run, in what the artist describes as a ‘revisioning of the traditions of landscape painting.’ She adds, ‘I was interested in all of these sites, which when considered together, constitute a conceptual landscape that reorients how American life is pictured, felt, and structured.’
Frieze New York, May 17th–21st, 2023, The Shed, frieze.com/fairs/frieze-new-york
About the artist
Jessica Vaughn is an artist who lives in Brooklyn, New York. Her work in sculpture, video, and 2D work
interrogates questions of labor, race, and architecture. Her solo exhibition, ‘I CUSTOMERS,’ is on view through May 21st, 2023, at the Kunstverein für die Rheinlande und Westfalen, Düsseldorf. Other exhibitions have included solo shows at the ICA Philadelphia and Dallas Contemporary and group shows at the Neuer Berliner Kunstverein, Berlin, DE, Museum Bellpark, CH. Pinakothek der Moderne, Munich, DE, Institute of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, Swiss Institute, The Kitchen, Pace Gallery, SculptureCenter and Studio Museum in Harlem, among others.
Vaughn is a 2021 Creative Capital Awardee, and her artist book Depreciating Assets was published in 2021 by Printed Matter. She received a BHA from Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, and an MFA from the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia. Vaughn participated in the Whitney Independent Study Program and attended the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture.