The 40th edition of Art Basel takes place in the culturally rich city of Basel, Switzerland, from June 10 through June 14, 2009. As the world’s premier art show, Art Basel marks the annual reunion of the international artworld. This year, more than 300 exhibiting galleries from all over the globe were selected from a record number of more than 1,100 applications, and will be showing works by over 2,500 artists of the 20th and 21st centuries. The Art Unlimited hall, with its 60 large-scale projects, and the Public Art Projects on the exhibition square offer further highlights.
The most spectacular event this year will be the presentation of “Il Tempo del Postino” at Theater Basel. Curated by Hans Ulrich Obrist and Philippe Parreno as a group exhibition that would occupy time rather than space, “Il Tempo del Postino” (Postman Time) presents a sequential display of time-based art on the theatre stage. Participating artists will include Doug Aitken, Matthew Barney & Jonathan Bepler, Tacita Dean, Thomas Demand, Trisha Donnelly, Olafur Eliasson, Peter Fischli / David Weiss, Liam Gillick, Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster, Douglas Gordon, Carsten Höller, Pierre Huyghe, Koo Jeong-A, Philippe Parreno, Anri Sala, Tino Sehgal and Rirkrit Tiravanija & Arto Lindsay. Furthermore Basel’s museums once again feature fascinating exhibitions, and will host a broad range of events.
Founded by a group of local gallerists, the first Art Basel took place in 1970 and has since then become the most prestigious art show worldwide. This 40th anniversary edition of Art Basel begins with a vernissage for invited guests on June 9 and opens to the general public from June 10 through June 14. The premier annual event regularly attracts some 60,000 artists, collectors, gallerists, curators, and art enthusiasts from across the globe, eager to see the most rigorously chosen overview of the international art market and to meet key movers of the international art scene. Covered by more than 2,300 media representatives, Art Basel earns its strong reputation based both on the quality and diversity of the exhibited art works.
Art 40 Basel will showcase all forms of artistic expression, including paintings, drawings, editions, and sculptures, installations, photography, performances, and internet and video art. Works costing a few thousand Swiss francs, by emerging artists, will be on display alongside museum-quality masterpieces priced in the millions.
Over 300 of the world’s leading galleries will be exhibiting at Art Basel. The galleries were chosen by the Art Basel Committee, an international jury of renowned gallerists, in accordance with strict quality criteria. Selected from a record number of more than 1,100 applicants, the sectors Art Galleries, Art Statements, Art Premiere and Art Edition include 75 galleries from the United States; 56 from Germany; 33 from Switzerland; 28 from Great Britain; 26 from France; 22 from Italy; 9 from Spain; 8 from Belgium; 7 from Austria; 5 from Japan; 4 each from Brazil, China and Poland; 3 from the Netherlands; 2 each from Canada, Denmark, Ireland, Mexico, Norway and South Korea; and one each from Argentina, Finland, India, Israel, Russia, South Africa, Sweden, Taiwan, and Turkey.
Once again more than 99 percent of last year’s exhibitors reapplied in the Art Galleries sector. This year’s strong roster of participants is reinforced by the additions of Johann König (Berlin), Dvir Gallery (Tel Aviv), Raw Art Gallery (Tel Aviv),Vitamin Creative Space (Guangzhou), Nils Staerk Contemporary Art (Copenhagen) and J Crist Gallery (Boise, Idaho, U.S.). The line-up of galleries showing 20th-century classics is augmented by Knoedler & Company (New York), Galerie Zlotowski (Paris), and Galerie Susanne Zander (Köln). The specialists in Art Edition are joined by Galerie Helga Maria Klosterfelde (Hamburg) and Galerie de Multiples (Paris), and the roster of photographic galleries is enhanced by the return of the Galerie Zur Stockeregg (Zürich). After a brief hiatus, David Nolan Gallery (New York), Galleria Raucci / Santamaria (Napoli), Greene Naftali (New York), Stuart Shave / Modern Art (London) and Team Gallery (New York) also rejoin Art Basel’s exhibitors.
Recent major acquisitions of British contemporary art will go on display in the BP Exhibition Classified, opening at Tate Britain on 22 June 2009. This free exhibition will i nclude large-scale works from Tate’s collection. Using a wide range of media, Classified will feature new acquisitions which will be on display at Tate for the first time, such as Jake & Dinos Chapman’s Chapman Family Collection 2002 and two works from Damien Hirst’s recent gift to Tate: The Acquired Inability to Escape 1991, one of the artist’s early vitrine works, and Life Without You 1991. On view 22 June – 23 August 2009.
Classified will offer visitors to Tate Britain the opportunity to see exceptional works by leading contemporary artists and to explore the recent development of Tate’s outstanding collection. Artists represented in the exhibition will be: Phillip Allen, Gillian Carnegie, Jake and Dinos Chapman, Martin Creed, Tacita Dean, Jeremy Deller, Mark Dion, Ceal Floyer, Damien Hirst, Simon Patterson, Peter Peri, Fiona Rae, Simon Starling, and Rebecca Warren.
Classified will focus on the way artists use ordering systems in their work, exploring how our need to classify affects our perception of the world. The exhibition will address this desire to collect, order and categorise, and will show how artists often use these networks and relationships in ways that reveal the inherent instability of meaning. The works in this exhibition employ a variety of methods and approaches, but are united by the artists’ engagement with the ways we all codify the objects and images that surround us as part of our daily life.
Familiar works such as Damien Hirst’s room installation Pharmacy 1992, Simon Patterson’s Great Bear 1992, a reconfigured version of the iconic map of the London Underground, and Mark Dion’s Tate Thames Dig 1999, which groups together objects found on the banks of the River Thames, will be shown alongside works that have been acquired over the last five years. This is the first time that many of these will be on display at Tate, including installations such as Simon Starling’s Work made-ready, Les Baux-de-Provence (Mountain Bike) 2001, Jake and Dinos Chapman’s Chapman Family Collection 2002, Tacita Dean’s film portrait Michael Hamburger 2007 and Rebecca Warren’s sculpture In the Bois 2005. All these works allow the visitor to reflect not only on the artists’ construction of meaning by their use of different strategies of classification but also on the museum’s role in collecting, cataloguing and displaying objects.
Classified is curated by Clarrie Wallis, Curator Contemporary British Art at Tate Britain, and Andrew Wilson, Curator Modern & Contemporary British Art at Tate.
BP British Art Displays 1500-2009 is supported by BP. BP has supported Collection Displays at Millbank since 1990, first at the Tate Gallery and then from the opening of Tate Britain in 2000 to the present. BP’s continued support allows Tate Britain to create a broad and dynamic displays programme which explores in depth British art from 1500 to the present. Visit Tate Britain at : www.tate.org.uk/britain/