Art Basel 2019 The World’s Top Art Fair – Visitors Guide

Art Basel 2019

Art Basel brings together some of the world’s leading galleries exhibiting the works of over 4,000 artists. A full program of talks and special events takes place daily throughout the run of the fair. Shows and events are also offered by cultural institutions in Basel and the surrounding area, creating an exciting, region-wide art week.

Art Basel could very well be the top art fair in the world – PCR

The show’s main sector will comprise 232 of the world’s leading galleries, showing painting, sculpture, drawing, installation, photography, video and editioned works of the highest quality. Spanish gallery Travesía Cuatro will be completely new to the show, while Galerie Thomas returns to Basel following a brief hiatus.

Art Basel 2019
Art Basel 2019

Additionally, the Galleries sector will be rejuvenated by seven galleries joining the sector for the first time, having previously exhibited in Feature or Statements. This June, Galerie Pietro Spartà from France; Peres Projects, Société and Wentrup from Germany; Hollybush Gardens and Sprovieri from the United Kingdom; and P.P.O.W from the United States will enter Art Basel’s prestigious main sector, showcasing the full range of their programs. Beginning this year, Art Basel will provide new entries to the main sector upstairs a 20 percent reduction on the square meter price for the first year, and a 10 percent reduction on the square meter price for the second year.

Premier galleries specialising in Modern and historical works from across the globe will once again return to Basel. Dozens of galleries will, exclusively or as a major part of their program, present exceptional pieces from the classical Modern to postwar contemporary, creating a unique focus on the outstanding quality of work from 1900 to 1970, a fundamental aspect of the show.

For the full exhibitor list for Feature, please visit

Featuring 24 projects this year, the sector will present ambitiously curated exhibitions by both historical and contemporary artists, with 11 galleries completely new to the show. Highlights from the sector include: a two-person show by US artists Allyson Strafella and Helen Mirra at Galleria Raffaella Cortese; Croy Nielsen’s presentation of work by Austrian artist Elke Silvia Krystufek, who during the 1990s became known for her often provocative performances, videos, photographs and paintings, many of which address the identity of the female artist in a patriarchal society; a solo show of Wallace Berman at galerie frank elbaz, with exceptional artworks and historical archival documents from the late 1940s to the 1970s; a focus on Cameron Rowland’s ‘Rental Project’ at Essex Street; a selection of never-before-exhibited, spectacular relief paintings by British artist Frank Bowling from the mid-1980s at Hales Gallery; a solo exhibition by Los Angeles-based artist Carl Cheng at Philip Martin Gallery; and a presentation of unpublished works by Hudinilson Jr., one of the pioneers of Xerox Art in Brazil, at Galeria Jaqueline Martins.

Art Basel 2019
Art Basel 2019

Welcoming six galleries to the Basel show for the first time, the sector will comprise 18 solo presentations by emerging artists, presented by young galleries from across the world. Highlights from the sector include: a new commission by Rose Salane at Carlos/Ishikawa; EJ Hill at Commonwealth and Council; Argentine artist Ad Minoliti at Galerie Crèvecoeur; a new body of work encompassing sculpture, drawing and painting by Bangladeshi artist Ayesha Sultana at Experimenter; Sable Elyse Smith, an interdisciplinary artist and writer who focuses much of her work on the American carceral state, at JTT; Palestinian-Jordanian artist Saba Innab at Marfa’; and a body of new work by Farah Al Qasimi looking at domestic traditions of hospitality and interior decor across public and private spaces in the Gulf states, presented by The Third Line. For the full exhibitor list for Statements, please visit
The 21st Baloise Art Prize will be awarded to up to two artists exhibiting in Statements, with recipients being announced at the media reception of Art Basel. The Baloise Group acquires works by the award-winning artists and donates them to two leading European museums, which will hold solo exhibitions for the recipients of the award.

The sector presents 14 global leaders in the field of prints and editioned works: Niels Borch Jensen Gallery and Editions, Alan Cristea Gallery, mfc – michèle didier, Atelier- Editions Fanal, Gemini G.E.L., Sabine Knust, Lelong Editions, Carolina Nitsch, Paragon, Polígrafa Obra Gràfica, Susan Sheehan Gallery, STPI, Two Palms and Durham Press, who participates in the Art Basel show for the first time. In addition to its stand presentation, mfc – michèle didier is selected to present ‘Colby Sign’ by Allen Ruppersberg on the Spotlight wall facing the Rundhof, which forms part of the Edition sector. For the full exhibitor list for Edition, please visit

Duane Hanson at Gagosian
Duane Hanson at Gagosian Unlimited

Taking place again on the upper floor of Hall 1, Unlimited, Art Basel’s unique platform for projects that transcend the limitations of a traditional art-fair stand, is curated for the eighth and final year by Gianni Jetzer, Curator-at-Large at the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden in Washington DC.

Unlimited, Art Basel’s unique platform for large-scale projects, provides galleries with the opportunity to showcase towering installations, monumental sculptures, vast wall paintings, extensive photographic series, video projections, and performance art that transcend the traditional art fair stand. Several presentations from this year’s exhibition address and comment on political upheavals and sociopolitical tensions, lending them a lasting presence. ‘Bataille’ (2017) by Rivane Neuenschwander is a partial freestanding interactive installation that explores the power of words taken from protest banners and placards in France. For ‘RYTHM MASTR Daily Strip’ (2018), Kerry James Marshall created comics featuring African- American superheroes. Alicia Framis’ ‘LifeDress’ (2018) consists of a clothing line made of airbag materials designed to protect women from harassment. Andrea Bowers’ installation ‘Open Secret’ (2018) documents the development of #MeToo and Time’s Up, international movements against sexual harassment and assault, which spread virally following the sexual misconduct allegations against Harvey Weinstein in 2017.

The sector also once again brings in younger voices from diverse regions. Canadian artist Kapwani Kiwanga, whose family has Tanzanian origins, and Angolan-born Kiluanji Kia Henda both explore Africa’s colonial history in their presentations. Indonesian artist Fiona Tan presents ‘Elsewhere’ (2018), a new filmic meditation on urban dystopia, while Korean artist Do Ho Suh invites visitors to life-size textile version of his former home with ‘Hub, 260-7 Sungbook-Dong, Sungbook-Ku, Seoul, Korea’ (2017). Two artists incorporate Virtual Reality into their works: German artist Lawrence Lek’s newly recast ‘Nøtel’ (2016-2019), an installation built around fictional luxury hotels, is accessible via VR headsets and game controllers, and African-American artist Jacolby Satterwhite, who was featured in Statements last year as an emerging artist, continues the evolution of his singular aesthetic built-in VR.


Featuring site-specific sculptures, interventions and performances presented by Art Basel’s exhibitors, Parcours will return for its tenth edition to the old city of Basel. The sector is once again curated by Samuel Leuenberger, founder of the non-profit exhibition space SALTS in Birsfelden, Switzerland.

Conversations at Art Basel 2019
Conversations at Art Basel 2019

Conversations: Art Basel
Conversations, Art Basel’s renowned talks series, will once again bring together leading artists, gallerists, collectors, art historians, curators, museum directors and critics from across the world. Programmed for the first time by Julieta Aranda, artist and co-director of e-flux, Conversations provides a platform for dialogues and discussions on current topics, offering diverse perspectives on collecting and exhibiting art and the wider artworld ecosystem. Art Basel, whose Lead Partner is UBS, takes place at Messe Basel from June 14 to June 16, 2019.

Conversations is held from Wednesday, June 12 to Saturday, June 15 in the auditorium of Hall 1. The program is free and open to the public. All panel discussions are followed by a Q&A session.

See full Programme

Art Basel’s week-long program of films by and about artists is curated by Maxa Zoller. Known for her roaming series of experimental film screenings, Zoller plans a diverse and challenging program of works that reflects on the complex role of media in today’s global world.

Art Basel presents ‘Aggregate’ (2017-2019), a performative environment by Romanian artist Alexandra Pirici, curated by Cecilia Alemani for Basel’s Messeplatz. Known for staging complex actions and live choreographies, Pirici often explores in her work symbolic manifestations of history, individual and collective notions of bodily presence, and structures of power. Art Basel, whose Lead Partner is UBS, takes place from June 13 to 16, 2019.

For this new iteration of ‘Aggregate’, Alexandra Pirici brings together over 60 performers that form a vast collective body through the accumulation of individual gestures, enveloping the viewers in intricate choreographies and rehearsed compositions. Enacting gestures and sounds taken from nature and from disparate popular sources in an attempt to render different forms of heritage and cultural memory, Pirici conceived ‘Aggregate’ as a time capsule in which fragments from vernacular culture, art history and everyday life are given new living embodiments.

Art Basel Film 2019
Art Basel Film 2019

As viewers walk around this performative landscape, the dancers and enactors mix seamlessly with the audience. While following a defined, algorithmic framework, the dancers choose improptu how they combine individual elements from a large selection of choreographic materials, including excerpts from pop songs such as Depeche Mode’s ‘Enjoy the Silence’ (1990), staged movements that evoke art historical masterpieces such as Michelangelo’s ‘David’ (c.1504) or Wifredo Lam’s ‘Lisa Mona’ (1950), popular references to Bollywood movies, as well as hand signals from the Occupy movement. The choreography is further punctuated by recitations of poetry excerpts from Forough Farrokhzad, Gil Scott-Heron and Simone Yoyotte, and Romanian folk music by Maria Tănase.

By identifying and highlighting fragments of a collective consciousness, ‘Aggregate’ invites the viewers to reflect on how identities are constructed and performed, and how collectivity is built through the selective recollection, multiplication and hybridization of knowledge and information. Thus, Pirici urges to confront commonalities and envision society itself as a subjective, living body of shared memories and behaviors.

The new edition of ‘Aggregate’ at Art Basel 2019 is staged in a newly designed temporary pavilion sited on Messeplatz, conceived and designed by Andrei Dinu, a frequent collaborator of Pirici’s. Inspired by American architect Buckminster Fuller’s geodesic domes and by medical isolation spaces, the temporary pavilion is constructed as an air- supported structure, whose shape is defined by soft, organic lines that contrast with the geometric, grid-like environment of Messeplatz. The flexible and translucent surface of the pavilion acts as a protective membrane or shell that pulsates with the energy of the performers and the surrounding spaces.

For ticket reservation, please contact:  For further screening information, please visit

Art Basel Venue: Messe Basel Messeplatz 10 4058 Basel Switzerland

Opening Hours:
Private Days (by invitation only) Tuesday, June 11, 2019, 11am to 8pm Wednesday, June 12, 2019, 11am to 8pm Vernissage (by invitation only) Wednesday, June 12, 2019, 4pm to 8pm

Public Days
Thursday, June 13, 2019, 11am to 7pm Friday, June 14, 2019, 11am to 7pm Saturday, June 15, 2019, 11am to 7pm Sunday, June 16, 2019, 11am to 7pm

Art Basel’s Conversations series is open to the public from Wednesday, June 12 to Saturday, June 15. Conversations start every morning at 10am in Hall 1.

There are also a number of collateral events and fairs which are well worth a visit.


Volta  Elsässerstrasse 215, 4056 Basel, Switzerland. June 11-16. Ticketed event.

LISTE  Burgweg 15, 4058 Basel, Switzerland. June 11-17. Ticketed event.

Photo Basel  Volkshaus Basel, Rebgasse 12-14, 4058 Basel, Switzerland. June 12-17. Ticketed event.

Scope  Webergasse 34, 4058 Basel, Switzerland. June 12-17. Ticketed event.

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