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The international art world convenes on London this weekend as a quartet of art fairs rolls out -- the Frieze Art Fair (Oct. 15-18, 2004), the Zoo Art Fair (Oct. 16-18, 2004) Scope London (Oct. 15-18, 2004) and the newly organized Pilot:1 International Art Forum (Oct. 16-18, 2004).

* Frieze Art Fair -- Organized by Amanda Sharp and Matthew Slotover, publishers of Frieze magazine, the second edition of the Frieze Art Fair includes 150 galleries, an increase of two dozen from 2003, in a show that is again housed in architect David Adjayes custom-designed tent in Regents Park. Top contemporary galleries such as White Cube/Jay Jopling Gallery and Gagosian Gallery are putting on museum-quality exhibitions by blue-chip superstars such as Damien Hirst and Jeff Koons.

The show also includes commissioned projects by 10 artists, including a series of performances organized by Swedish artist Annika Eriksson; a play titled Thou Art That. Thou Art That put on by the legendary People Show and produced by Joanne Tatham & Tom OSullivan; a series of installations on the bathroom mirrors at the City Inn Westminster Hotel organized by the Nicola Trussardi Foundation; and a series of abstract color "sunsets" painted on 75 Rover cars by Pae White.

The Frieze Art Fair Special Acquisitions Fund for the Tate Collection is 150,000 this year (up from 100,000 in 2003), with the selection given over to Walker Art Center curator Richard Flood and Ludwig Museum director Kasper Knig. The fair is sponsored by Deutsche Bank AG and expects an estimated 35,000 visitors.

* Zoo Art Fair -- The inaugural year of the Zoo Art Fair, organized by London dealer David Risley and independent curator Soraya Rodriguez, features 26 London galleries and arts organizations, all under three years old, set up at the London Zoo in Regents Park. Participants range from Centrefold, Dicksmith and f a projects to Studio 1.1, Trolley and Union. Among the special events are a performance series at the zoos reptile house, an "Art Market Forum" presented by the new art-investment group ArtTactic, and a special zoo fair T-shirt designed by Showroom Dummies.

Whats more, in cooperation with the fair, Artnet has posted a special online preview of the galleries and samples of the works on offer; to go to the Artnet Zoo Art Fair preview, click here.

* Scope London -- Almost 50 galleries, from Artcore in Toronto and Black & White in Brooklyn to Vlcker & Freunde in Berlin and Yoo Projects in San Francisco, convene at the Meliá White House hotel in Regents Park. Among the special attractions are panels on "Being Digital" and "Collecting the Hard Stuff."

Pilot:1 -- Billed as "a unique showcase for emerging visual artists and independent curators," the fair features unrepresented artists at Old Limehouse Town Hall, a Victorian-era building in the East London art district. About 80 artists are participating in the event, which is organized by Rory Macbeth, Colin Guillemet, Doriane Laithier, Elizabeth McAlpine and Matthew Poole. For more info, see

Photo New York 2004, a new photo fair in Manhattan sponsored by Stephen Cohen Gallery from Los Angeles, commences at the Metropolitan Pavilion at 125 West 18th Street, Oct. 14-17, 2004, with a reception hosted by actors Matt Dillon and Fisher Stevens and benefiting the Jewish Museum. Artist Elinor Carucci has donated an edition of 50 color photographs to raise funds for museum photo acquisitions; the photos are for sale at $500 each (and include two tickets to the gala preview).

More than 40 galleries and private dealers are participating, with photo-based work by contemporary artists as well as 19th- and 20th-century photographs. Exhibitors include Haim Chanin, ClampArt, Ethan Cohen, Katrina Doerner, Eyestorm, Kennedy Hamburg, Lyonsweir, Scalo, Barry Singer, Tartt and Vintage Works. Among the special events are lectures by photographers Larry Fink and Joel-Peter Witkin, and a panel discussion on "The Evolution of Photography in Print."

New York City is hosting a citywide "homecoming" celebration of the pioneering African American artist Romare Bearden (1911-1977) in conjunction with "The Art of Romare Bearden" at the Whitney Museum, Oct. 14, 2004-Jan. 9, 2005. Organized by curator Ruth Fine for the National Gallery of Art, the impressive survey features 150 artworks, many from private collections. Other Bearden exhibitions in the city include:

* "Romare Bearden at the Met," Oct. 19, 2004-Mar. 7, 2005, at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, an exhibition of works that includes the artists epochal The Block (1971) and Recollection Pond (1975), a rare foray into textile art.

* "Romare Bearden: From the Archives," Nov. 5, 2004-Jan. 4, 2005, at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, a show that includes items from Beardens library as well as nontraditional examples of his work.

* "Romare Bearden in the Brooklyn Museum Collection," Dec. 17, 2004-Mar. 6, 2005, at the Brooklyn Museum, a show of seven works from the permanent collection.

*"Romare Bearden: The Last Years, Photographs by Frank Stewart," Oct. 9-Nov. 9, 2004, at June Kelly Gallery, a show of over 100 photos of the artist.

*"Artist and Dealer: Romare Bearden and Sheldon Ross," Oct. 12-Nov. 6, 2004, at Franklin Riehlman and Megan Moynihan Fine Art, an exhibition of 11 collages and three watercolors exploring the relationship of the artist and one of his dealers (the gallery, located at 24 East 73rd Street, is open by appointment only; call 212-879-2545).

*"Romare Bearden," Oct. 16-Dec. 11, 2004, at ACA Galleries, a show of major collages and works on paper.

*"Romare Bearden: True Love," Oct. 23-Nov. 20, 2004, at Essie Green Galleries, an exhibition of works received from Bearden, who was the gallerys mentor, between 1974 and 87.

Three Bearden murals are on public view in New York: City of Glass (1993), a stained-glass window commissioned by the MTA for the Westchester Square Station in the Bronx; Cityscape: Scenes from Life in Harlem (1974), a recently restored collage at Bellevue Hospital at 1st Avenue and 27th Street; and The City (1983), a mosaic at the Borough of Manhattan Community College at 199 Chambers Street in Manhattan.

The downtown Manhattan arts group Wall Street Rising has organized "Art Downtown: Connecting Collections," Oct. 22-Dec. 10, 2004, a show of artworks selected by five celebrity curators. Among the curator-collectors are Danny Simmons and Russell Simmons, who are lending a 10 x 32 foot long graffiti mural by Meres; Mikhail Baryshnikov, who has selected a video installation by Brooklyn artist Chris Doyle; Diane von Furstenberg, who is contributing a version of her signature wrap dress made with fabric printed from a design by Miwa Yanagi; and Robert Wilson, who is designing a series of dramatic tableaux from his own collection and that of Deutsche Bank, the events sponsor. Venue for the exhibition is the Grand Banking Hall at 48 Wall Street.

Maverick artist David Hammons has a new multiple -- his very own version of the Old Testament. The Holy Bible: Old Testament is a "limited edition artists bookwork" that consists of a softcover edition of Arturo Schwarzs catalogue, The Complete Works of Marcel Duchamp, that has been rebound in leather to resemble a bible, complete with gilt lettering and slipcase. Issued by Hand/Eye Projects in London, the work is limited to an edition of 165 (produced as ordered) and costs $3,350; it can be ordered in New York from Printed Matter, Inc.

Istanbul-born video artist Kutlug Ataman, 43, has won the $10,000 Carnegie Prize at the 2004 "Carnegie International" exhibition at the Carnegie Museum of Art in Pittsburgh. His work in the show, titled Kuba, is a 40-channel video installation focusing on the residents of an Istabul slum. Ataman, who is also a finalist for the Turner Prize at Tate Britain in London, is represented by Lehman Maupin Gallery in New York.

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