Nikita Gale, presented by BMW

Talk Art special episode!!! We meet leading artist NIKITA GALE! It's Frieze London and we explore an incredible new art installation for BMW Open Work by Frieze. Artist Nikita Gale worked with BMW i7 designers to present the site-specific installation “63/22” in the BMW Lounge at the fair from October 12-16, 2022.

Curated by Attilia Fattori Franchini, BMW Open Work by Frieze invites an artist to develop an ambitious project utilising BMW design and technology to pursue their practice in innovative new directions. BMW Open Work offers artists the possibility of engaging in a rich dialogue with BMW engineers, designers, and experts from different fields to create unique artistic projects.

Investigating the politics of sound and its surrounding, Nikita Gale’s practice enquires themes of invisibility and audibility, recasting the complicated dynamic between performer and spectator. Within the work, notions are subverted and destabilized. Nikita Gale’s interest in the history of sound continues with “63/22”, in which the artist reflects on the relationship between automotive and sound technologies, already closely associated since the 1960s. In fact, the Gibson Firebird, one of the most popular electric guitars, was designed by a car designer in 1963. 

Emerging from an intense dialogue with BMW i7 designers and engineers whilst reinforcing BMW’s commitment to art and music, Gale presents for Frieze London 2022 a sculptural installation comprising of five customised electric guitars. The guitars will be named historically significant and iconic Black women guitarists: Memphis Minnie, Sister Rosetta Tharpe, Barbara Lynn, Big Mama Thornton, and Joan Armatrading. Activated in the lounge through a series of live acts performed by musicians invited by Gale, the guitars will play through the BMW i7, transforming the car into a sound amp, amplifying the relationship between the car, sound technologies and creativity. The guitars have been created in collaboration with BMW i7 designers and realised by a UK-based luthier, Ian Malone. 

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Gale's work employs objects and materials like barricades, concrete, microphone stands, and spotlights to address the ways in which space and sound are politicized. Gale’s broad-ranging installations blur formal and disciplinary boundaries, engaging with concerns of mediation and automation in contemporary performance. 

Follow: @NikitaGale on Instagram. Gale is represented by Commonwealth & Council (LA), Reyes | Finn (Detroit), and 56 Henry (NYC).

Follow @BMWGroupCulture to learn more about BMW's commitment to art, more than 50 years supporting artists and culture.

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