There is never more buzz in the city of Basel than during the week of Art Basel. This four-day-long event welcomes the elite members of the art world in a celebration of imagination, creativity, and artistic talent. The show begins today, on June 14 as the halls of Messe Basel in Switzerland officially open their gates to the public for the 49th edition of Art Basel 2018, which culminates in the evening of June 17. However, prior to opening day, selected art collectors, VIPs and press get a first look at works of over 4000 artists showcased by 290 of the world’s leading art galleries.
Simon Lee London and Perrotin Paris, Booth M25 and M26
The two galleries, Simon Lee and Perrotin, collaborated to create a unique booth setup for Art Basel 2018. Simon Lee and Perrotin utilized their adjoining position at the fair and the special architecture of their booths to create a shared space over two floors dedicated to major works by French painter Bernard Frize.
Bernard Frize Exhibition at Perrotin and James Lee Both during Art Basel 2018, photographed by Claire Dorn
Galerie Gmurzynska, Zurich & New York, Booth G3
The innovative and leading international gallery, which has locations in Zurich, St. Moritz, New York, is a must-see at each Art Basel exhibition and is always considered one of the major booths to visit. Known for their innovative ideas and creative collaborations, this year’s gallery presents two specially curated cabin exhibitions: One is an homage to the pop-icon artist Robert Indiana (1928-2018), who became famous for his LOVE paintings and sculptures.
Gmurzynska’s Homage to Robert Indiana at Art Basel 2018
The second exhibition is all about works by the two 20th-century giants Roberto Matta and Marcel Duchamp. The exhibition also includes three major Picassos.
Galerie Gmurzynska Booth at Art Basel 2018 in Basel.
Helly Nahmad London, Booth H5
The London based gallery displays a wide array of works in order to encompass the movement and development of 20th Century Art.Works by Joan Miro, Pablo Picasso and Alexander Calder are shown in this photo.
Alexander Calder, Untitled, 1948 and Joan Miró, Personnage Oiseaux, 1976.
Fondation Beyeler, Booth H1
The main Fondation Beyeler stand at this year’s Art Basel is devoted to Pablo Picasso, the emblematic artist of the 20th-century. The selection of works on show concentrates on Picasso’s multifaceted image of woman, with three major paintings and a large bronze sculpture of the artist’s lover and muse Dora Maar.
Fondation Beyeler’s Stand at Art Basel 2019 dedicated to Pablo Picasso.
Highlights from the Collector’s Lounge
The by-invitation-only Collector’s Lounge is reserved for collectors, artists and exhibitors, and VIPs as well as guests of sponsoring partners. The happening inside the VIPs lounge on the second floor of the art fair is as much of a highlight as the exhibition itself. Sponsoring partners create culinary experiences, private meeting areas, artistic collaborations and spaces to see and be seen. This year the Collector’s Lounge greeted its guests in a new, sleek, light and chic design and on a larger space than usual.
Street Artist Oli-B for NetJets
NetJets has been an associate partner of Art Basel for seventeen years. Ahead of the Basel show opening, the private aviation firm chose to work with Oli-B, a painter, illustrator and street artist from Brussels, in creating an innovative installation on display at the NetJets VIP lounge in the Art Basel Collectors Lounge.Oli-B’s eclectic work ranges across acrylic, spray paint, digital and screen printing techniques, on a wide variety of surfaces including canvas, paper, wood or walls.
NetJets VIP Lounge at Art Basel 2018
Artist Duo Semiconductor for Audemars Piguet
This year, the luxury watch manufacturer from Le Brassus shows an art commission that was realised by British artist-duo Semiconductor (Ruth Jarman and Joe Gerhardt) in collaboration with guest curator Mónica Bello, head of Arts and curator at CERN, the European Laboratory for Particle Physics in Geneva. HALO, the large-scale, site-specific artwork, presents visitors with an artistic interpretation of the ATLAS experiment at CERN, and marks the first time that raw data from CERN has been utilized within an art installation.
Audemars Piguet Art Commission for Art Basel 2018: HALO
Liu Bolin for Ruinart
Ruinart, the official champagne partner of Art Basel, is known for its annual artistic partnerships. This year, Ruinart has commissioned none other than the Chinese artist Liu Bolin, better known as the ‘Invisible Man’. This up-and-coming artist has created an unique way of melting into a scenery with a special painting technique that allows the viewer wonder and surprise. His works were created during his visit to Maison Ruinart’s historic crayères and will be showcased at Art Basel and other famous art fairs all over the world in 2018.
Liu Bolin at Les Crayeres of Ruinart in Reims
Grand Hotel Les Trois Rois
Speaking of which: To end a day at Art Basel in style is to do so with a glass of Ruinart Blanc des Blancs; there is no better place to commemorate the end of the exhibition than on at sunset on the terrace of the iconic Le Grand Hotel Les Trois Rois, which overlooks Basel’s old town.
The Bar at Grand Hotel Les Trois Rois in Basel.
It’s this one-of-a-kind luxury hotel that is perfect in every detail and a must-visit when in Basel, Swizterland.
Grand Hotel Les Trois Rois in Basel by night
For more highlights, details and artworks follow @passportbyforbes on Instagram and see my day at Art Basel live on Passport by Forbes Insta Stories.
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