BASEL.- Art Basel
today opened its 44th edition in Basel, Switzerland, taking place June 13 to June 16, 2013. This year, 304 leading international galleries present 11 decades of work, ranging from the Modern period of the early 20th century to the most contemporary. The Basel show presents a geographically diverse selection of galleries from 39 countries and territories across five continents.
While galleries from Europe continue to be strongly represented, the show offers exhibitors from across the globe. This years edition sees the largest-ever number of exhibitors with spaces in the Asia-Pacific region at the show. For the first time in the show's history, galleries from the Philippines and Singapore are present. The participating galleries have exhibition spaces in: Argentina, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Iceland, India, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Lebanon, Mainland China, Mexico, Monaco, Netherlands, Norway, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Singapore, Slovenia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom and the United States.
This year, many elements of the show are housed within the new extension of Hall 1, designed by internationally renowned Basel architects Herzog & de Meuron and directly sited on Messeplatz. While the previously existing part of Hall 1 has been given completely over to Unlimited, the Statements and Magazines sectors, and the auditorium for the Conversations and Salon series, have been sited within the new state of the art exhibition hall.
The main sector of the show, Galleries, features 238 galleries presenting the highest quality of painting, sculpture, drawing, installation, photography, video and editioned works. A strong list of returning exhibitors is joined, following a brief hiatus, by Maureen Paley (London) and PKM Gallery (Seoul), while a number of galleries exhibit within the sector for the first time, having previously shown in Statements or Feature. They include: Alison Jacques Gallery (London), kaufmann repetto (Milan), Galerie Guido W. Baudach (Berlin), Galerie Jocelyn Wolff (Paris) and McCaffrey (New York). Adding to a strong presentation of vintage photography is first time exhibitor Howard Greenberg Gallery (New York).
The Feature sector presents galleries with precise curatorial projects, showing both historical and contemporary work. This year's edition features 24 galleries from 16 countries, the highest number of galleries since the sector's introduction in 2010. Highlights of Feature includes a presentation by Parra & Romero (Madrid) of historical works by the Uruguayan conceptual artist Luis Camnitzer, many of which have remained unseen since their creation between 1969 and 1980. Leo Castelli Gallery (New York) shows a selection of important works, including previously unseen works on paper, dating from the 1960s by American artist Robert Morris. RaebervonStenglin (Zurich) shows new work by veteran artist Robert Kinmont and newcomer Kilian Rüthemann that explores the differences and similarities of their practice. Work spanning more than a decade of Brazilian artist Sonia Gomes practice is on show at Mendes Wood (Sao Paolo). Take Ninagawa (Tokyo) shows historic works by Japanese artist Tsuruko Yamazaki, including a piece originally realized for the 1st Gutai Art Exhibition in Tokyo in 1955. Further highlights include Robert Heineckens Surrealism on TV, presented by Cherry and Martin (Los Angeles), representing the first time the work is being shown in Europe, while Herald Street (London) presents a performance piece by Pablo Bronstein, featuring four dancers dressed as famous figures from the French Revolution, lying motionless on camp beds.
Presented in the premier position within the new exhibition hall, the solo presentations of Statements again offers visitors and collectors a prime opportunity to discover the work of emerging artists and galleries. This year, 13 of the 24 galleries exhibiting within Statements are new to the show. Highlights of Statements include a presentation by Meessen De Clercq (Brussels) of work by French-Vietnamese artist Thu Van Tran, consisting of a video piece and assorted supporting documents. Galeria Casas Riegner (Bogota) shows ‘Casa Desorientada’, an inflatable floating habitable module in the shape of a cube, by Colombian artist Mateo Lopez. Overduin and Kite (Los Angeles) present an installation of video, drawings and sculpture by Los Angeles based artist Erika Vogt, while Stevenson (Cape Town) displays new work by South African artist Wa Lehulere in the form of a wall drawing and performance piece. On the first day of the show, Lehulere performs in the booth, with the remnants of his performance remaining a part of the installation for the duration of the fair. Laurel Gitlen (New York) presents an installation of new works by Berlin-based American artist Jessica Jackson Hutchins, including a number of significant new sculptures. Silverlens (Philippines) shows new works by Maria Taniguchi, including a series of works on paper and a video piece. Chinese artist Hu Xiaoyuan, exhibited at Documenta 12, presents a new series of works consisting of wood pieces with Beijing Commune (Beijing), representing a continuation of the artist’s experimentation with the material in her practice.