Chris-Ofili-001
‘Going through a phase of experiment and transition’ … Chris Ofili. Photograph: Eamonn McCabe

There was one thing I liked at the Frieze art fair, one thing which stayed with me: a tiny painting by Chris Ofili, all blue and dreamlike and strange, almost gothic – a fragment of a fantasy, a tentative trying out of something.

Ofili is clearly going through a phase of experiment and transition – an anxious, difficult phase by the looks of this painting – and some might see it as a moment of weakness and failure. In fact, another Ofili painting, equally odd and different and hesitant, has been one of my few lasting memories of last year’s Frieze.

This rambling event is fun, I am not denying that – if that’s your idea of fun. But why is there so little art at Frieze which is truly outstanding? There was a Picasso drawing at the Waddington’s stall, and some beautiful photographs by Wolfgang Tillmans, but the claim of this art fair to define the new seems questionable if it cannot give us any knock-out discoveries.”

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Jonathan Jones
Guardian

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