Performances have been this year’s greatest novelty: the 14 Rooms section is entirely dedicated to them, curated by Hans Ulrich Obrist and by Klaus Biesenbach.
Punctual and magnificent as every year, it has just concluded the 2014 edition of Art Basel, the most celebrated art fair in the world, hosted from the 19th until the 22nd of June in Basel, city in the northern town of Switzerland for the pleasure of art amateurs, collectors, galleries, professionals and simple visitors.
With an impressive list of more than 300 international exposing galleries, debates, public discussions, performances, film projections, art itineraries in the city, book presentations and much more, the 2014 edition was full of suggestions for anyone involved or passionate about Modern-Contemporary Art.
Amongst the world-renown galleries that participate, we recommend the Marlborough Fine Art Gallery presenting Modern 20th century art, the Galleria Continua showing artist Pascale Marthine Tayou, the Gagosian Gallery and first time exhibiting galleries such as Proyectos Monclova in Mexico City and A Gentil Carioca in Rio de Janeiro.
Performances have been this year’s greatest novelty: the 14 Rooms section is entirely dedicated to them, curated by Hans Ulrich Obrist curator at the Serpentine Gallery in London and by Klaus Biesenbach director of the MOMA PS1. This part of the fair has presented performances by 14 international artists in 14 rooms. The artists shown are Marina Abramović, Jennifer Allora & Guillermo Calzadilla, Ed Atkins, Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster, Damien Hirst, Joan Jonas, Laura Lima, Bruce Nauman, Otobong Nkanga, Roman Ondák, Yoko Ono, Tino Sehgal, Santiago Sierra and Xu Zhen. The objective of this project is to reflect on the relation between time, space and physicality and to present a real human being as a work of art.
Another success of the fair is the Parcours section curated by Florence Derieux, director of FRAC Champagne-Ardenne, whom starting from the fair’s spaces has taken over the ones in the city of Basel where in-situ sculptures, performances and interventions are accessible to visitors for free in the middle of town.
Of great interest is also the section Unlimited of Art Basel, where 78 large-scale installations, videos, paintings and sculptures have been shown. Curated for the third year in a row by New Yorker Gianni Jetzer, presenting artists such as Ana Mendieta, Bruce Nauman, Michelangelo Pistoletto, Anthony Caro and many more, not only giving its spaces to immense works of art of already established artists but also giving a chance at emerging ones. Particularly of interest is the installation created by Cameroonian artist Pascale Marthine Tayou for the Galleria Continua whom constructed Tayouwood, a small-scale village with objects, videos and architectural forms that evoke the artists’ hometown. Chaotic and intense it strongly expresses the idea of travel and of contact with the different.
Among the most interesting talks, the conversation Curating at the Periphery in which Florence Derieux, director of the FRAC at Champagne-Ardenne and curator of the Parcours section in Art Basel, Michelle Grabner, co-director of The Suburban in Oak Park and founder of the Poor Farm in Wisconsin, David Norr, curator at the Wexner Centre of the Arts in Columbus Ohio and Sabine Rusterholz Petko, director of the Kunsthaus in Glarus have shared their knowledge and experience on the conditions of working in towns which are not central in the art world (as Paris, London or New York could be) and where the public is not necessarily accustomed to contemporary art.
Therefore, even this year, it is impossible to get bored at Art Basel, always arriving exhausted at the end of the day after so many sensations and experiences.
Art Basel 2014
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