In it’s 43rd conception, Art Basel is continuing its legacy as the leader among the contemporary art world’s fairs. Last year, 65,000 people flocked to the cultural capital, situated at the border of Switzerland, France, and Germany. For this year, Basel will no doubt draw a similar, if not greater audience throughout its four-day duration. Art Observed will be on site to cover and photograph throughout this fair.
Founded in 1970, Art Basel quickly surpassed Germany’s Art Cologne and similar fairs in scale and remains today as the world’s largest. Almost 300 galleries from around the globe participate, spanning five continents. This international representation results in a large and diverse assortment of exhibitions, video works, performances, and public installations. This year specifically there will be more than 2,500 artists exhibiting $2 billion worth of art, nearly 300 gallery booths, and many more single stands present.
Perhaps the star feature of this year’s Basel will be Marlborough Fine Art’s Mark Rothko canvas, dated 1954. The painting, for which there is already buyer interest, is priced from $78 to $84 million.
Basel’s VIP preview has been extended an extra day this year and takes place on June 12 and 13. Basel officially opens with Art Parcours Night on Wednesday, June 13, featuring Kathryn Andrews’ ‘Voix de Ville’, a show of theatrical performances placed against her art installations. The public start date of the fair is the day after, June 14, and continues through June 17.
Kara Walker will be at Sikkema Jenkins’ booth
Present at Basel this year are New York galleries Lehmann Maupin, which will show artists Hernan Bas, Ross Bleckner, Tracy Emin, Erwin Wurm, Tony Oursler, and Gilbert & George; Sikkema Jenkins & Co., showing paper works by Kara Walker; Paula Cooper will exhibit Rudolf Stingel; Sean Kelly, to present a reenactment of Marina Abramovic‘s 1977 performance work “Imponderabilia”; and Maccarone, with works by Carol Bove, Alex Hubbard, Paul Lee, Nate Lowman, and Ryan Sullivan. Joining Basel for the first time from McCaffrey Fine Art, which will bring works by Gutai artists like Sadamasa Motonaga and Kazuo Shiraga.
Cyprien Gaillard‘s “Not yet titled (Queen City)” via Sprüth Magers Berlin, London
Pablo Picasso‘s “Femme assise au chapeau” via Acquavella Galleries/VAGA
Ellsworth Kelly’s “Diagonal With Curve” to be exhibited at Matthew Marks’ booth
New York’s David Zwirner will present “Thousand”, an installation of 1,000 Polaroids by Philip-Lorca diCorcia, who took the photos over 25 years. This is the first showing of “Thousand” in Europe. Also in the Zwirner Basel collection is Adel Abdessemed, Marlene Dumas, Marcel Dzama, Dan Flavin, Francis Alÿs, Donald Judd, John McCracken, Alice Neel, Thomas Ruff, Luc Tuymans, and Lisa Yuskavage. Dan Flavin’s 1987 tribute to Leo Castelli, “Untitled (in honor of Leo at the 30th anniversary of his gallery)” is a 8 foot long structure patched with fluorescent colors, while the installation by Algerian artist Adel Abdessemed is created from discarded tin cans he collected in Dakar. Zwirner’s Art Basel booth is placed in Hall 2, F5.
Philip-Lorca diCorcia’s “Thousand” via David Zwirner, New York
Gladstone Gallery’s exhibition list includes Allora & Calzadilla, Kai Althoff, Alighiero e Boetti, Carroll Dunham, Cecilia Edefalk, Keith Haring, Cameron Jamie, Anish Kapoor, Andrew Lord, Sarah Lucas, Marisa Merz, Dave Muller, Jean-Luc Mylayne, Shirin Neshat, Damián Ortega, Elizabeth Peyton, Richard Prince, Ugo Rondinone and Rosemarie Trockel. Damián Ortega’s installation “Architecture without Architects” will be shown at Art Unlimited.
Jim Hodges at Gladstone’s booth
Allora & Calzadilla‘s “Intermission (Halloween Afghanistan: Portrait II)” from Lisson Gallery
Marian Goodman will show John Baldessari‘s “Double Bill: … And Ernst”
The prodigious Art Unlimited section of Basel characteristically features oversize installations and will be curated this year by Gianni Jetzer, Director of New York’s Swiss Institute. Other additions to this division are a new installation by Gavin Brown represented LA artist Laura Owens and a fluorescent light sculpture by Robert Irwin, to be presented by Pace Gallery.
Other artists featured by Pace will include Josef Albers, Alexander Calder, Chuck Close, Willem de Kooning, Tara Donovan, Jean Dubuffet, Adrian Ghenie, Donald Judd, Sol Lewitt, Claes Oldenburg, Pablo Picasso, Robert Rauschenberg, Mark Rothko, Lucas Samaras, Kiki Smith, Hiroshi Sugimoto, Richard Tuttle, James Turrell.
Pace Gallery’s main feature is a Gerhard Richter abstract titled “A.B. Courbet” that will lead the auction with a value of more than $20 million via Bloomberg
Another robust and global contributor, Gagosian will show around $250 million of works by artists such as Damien Hirst. Highlights from Gagosian’s Basel stand include a sculpture by Austrian artist Franz West, depicting the human body’s inner structure, and the premiere of Richard Phillip‘s “First Point”, a surf culture film starring actress Lindsay Lohan.
The more quirky Iwan Wirth will present at the Hauser & Wirth booth Louise Bourgeois’ nude bronze “Arched Figured” and Thomas Houseago‘s 2012 also bronze work. Other noteworthy artists featured by the gallery are Ida Applebroog, Martin Creed, Berlinde De Bruyckere, Isa Genzken, Dan Graham, Rodney Graham, Eva Hesse, Allan Kaprow, Paul McCarthy, John McCracken, Henry Moore, Ron Mueck, David Zink Yi, and Pipilotti Rist.
Subodh Gupta‘s “Family Nest No. 3″ (2012) to be displayed at Hauser & Wirth’s booth
International representation at this year’s Basel include Beijing’s Long March Space, showcasing an ink drawing by Guo Fengyi and a sculptural installation by Wu Shanzhuan; Tokyo’s Tomio Koyama Gallery, bringing a ceramic sculpture by Korean artist Lee Kangso and a vehicle themed drawing by Shintaro Miyake.
Peres Projects in Berlin will feature new works by Alex ISRAEL in the Art Statements sector, Cologne dealer Galerie Karsten Greve is set to show a blackboard painting by Cy Twombly titled “Hill (Rome)” and priced at $12 million, Zurich based Galerie Andrea Caratsch will have a collection of 14 self-portraits by Italian artist Giorgio de Chirico, and German dealer Daniel Blau will host early drawings by Andy Warhol, including sketches during his first weeks in New York. London’s White Cube will exhibit works by Darren Almond, George Baselitz, Jake & Dinos Chapman, Antony Gormley, Andreas Gursky, and Damien Hirst.
Galerie Gmurzynska started its Art Basel fete early, with the Saturday opening of a historic exhibition of works by David Smith at the gallery’s location in Zurich, Art in the Park on Sunday, and on Monday night a show in honor of the acclaimed architect Zaha Hadid and her new book at Three Kings Hotel in Basel.
New York’s Skarstedt Gallery to display Cindy Sherman‘s “Untitled #85 (From the Centerfold Series)” (1981)
Among the offshoots of Basel, Design Miami/Basel runs concurrently near the main site, featuring newcomers Salon 94 from New York, Heritage Gallery from Moscow, and Galleria O. from Rome. Another satellite show, Scope Basel will feature 80 galleries this year and is newly located in historic Kaserne. Volta, the Merchandise Mart-owned fair will take place at Dreispitzhalle in Basel and includes work from Conner Contemporary Art in D.C., Galerie Metro in Berlin, and EB & Flow in London.
Liste 17, “The Young Art Fair in Basel” presents a younger generation of galleries and artists at a former Warteck brewery. This year Liste will feature 64 galleries from 22 countires, including Los Angeles’s Overduin and Kite and Dublin’s Mother’s Tankstation and newcomers Kendall Koppe from Glasgow, Sabot from Cluj, and Maisterravalbuena from Madrid.
The Art Salon program has been released as well, featuring a dense list of speakers, panels, and other appearances scheduled during the days of Basel. This year’s Salon is curated by Maike Cruse and focuses on themes and individuals immediately pertinent to today’s art world. Preview the program here.
Exhibition Site [Art Basel]
Art Fairs As The New Museums: Here’s What’s On View At Art Basel 2012 [Forbes]
Richter, Twombly Lead $2 Billion Basel Art Fair [Bloomberg]
Fair selection panels: Behind the scenes [Financial Times]
David Zwirner at Art 43 Basel [David Zwirner]
Peres Projects [Press Release]
Peres Projects at Art Basel 43 [Facebook]
LISTE – The Young Art Fair [Main Page]
Art | 43 | Basel [Hauser & Wirth]
Tomorrow, the world … [Financial Times]
A Cocktail of Art in Basel [Wall Street Journal]
The Art Basel Agenda: 10 Can’t-Miss Events During the European Mega-Fair [Artinfo]
SCOPE Basel 2012 [Main Page]
BMW is partner of Art Basel, the art show for modern and contemporary art [BMW Group]
Gagosian Gallery to present a single sculpture by Franz West at Art Basel’s Art Unlimited [Art Daily]