This package was broadcast by Monocle 24 Radio on May 7, 2012.


The London-based Frieze art fair has just wrapped up for its first foray into the U.S. art market – with a four-day festival of exhibitors, buyers and sellers in New York City.

All the galleries were there, from White Cube to Gagosian, but while Manhattan’s art buyers looked down their noses and then opened their wallets, demonstrations were held outside the venue over the organizers’ decision not to use unionized carpenters to build the temporary exhibition structure.

Monocle’s Frederick Bernas went along to Randall’s Island to hear if a little controversy has been good – or bad – for business.