Opening this year in another hall of the Messe Basel, the Liste Art Fair returns to Basel Art Week with another edition of its event showcasing works by a range of galleries presenting the latest and newest voices in contemporary art. Running in conjunction with the Art Basel fair just a few minutes away in another hall of the expansive exhibition center, Liste welcomes 81 galleries from 33 countries, each centering on younger artists, new concepts and exploratory work.
With 106 artists being presented, 50 solo and 17 group shows, and 21 first-time exhibitors, the fair continues its reputation as a leading voice in new art. The fair marks its 25th and 26th anniversary this year, celebrating the quarter of a century that passed last year during the pandemic, and uses that springboard as a point of entry for an engaging series of works and projects that reflect on its own history as well as that of the art world evolving around it.
The work this year matched this vision of new pathways forward. At London’s Soft Opening, one could view surreal amalgamations of consumer products and fashion goods, twisted through a distinctly DIY lens, courtesy of Tenant of Culture, while at A.Romy, artist Maya Hottarek was showing a set of similarly handcrafted appliances, like a large ceramic sink, curving and twisting with added pointed embellishments. There were also a series of engaging new meditations on painting, like Melike Kara’s colorful and surreal interpretations of group forms and human bodies, while artist Sarah Slappey was presenting her kaleidoscopic interpretations of the human form at Maria Bernheim. Another striking iteration of the human form could be found at Capsule Shanghai, where artist Wang Haiyang’s brightly colored and otherworldly depictions of bodies made for a striking booth, paired with the space’s pale pink walls.
There were also more enigmatic and explorative pieces on view, like artist Christopher Aque’s sculptural arrangement of glass, tubes and germicidal lights, which formed a strange linkage between ceramic design and the modern context of medical crises that sits at the backdrop of this year’s fair. Elsewhere, Moscow’s Fragment was showing a series of sculptures by Patricia Ayres, challenging arrangements of material that walked a fine line between sculpture, textile art and painting.
Always making for an engaging event, this year’s Liste was a fitting return to form after a year away from the Swiss city. It closes today, September 26th.
– D. Creahan
Liste [Exhibition Site]