The 18th edition of LISTE – Art Fair Basel closed its doors on Sunday, June 16, 2013. With its audience of high caliber experts, the Preview provided an impressive start to the fair and was followed by a week in which approximately 13,000 visitors attended LISTE.
It was once again a qualitatively outstanding fair – both art connoisseurs and media experts agree on that. The 66 participating galleries impressed visitors with their carefully selected, relevant presentations, a fact that was clearly reflected in sales numbers. After the preview day, a number of gallery stands were already sold out and had to be restocked. The 29 solo presentations represented a special highlight of this year’s fair.
The Preview and Fair Week
The Preview on Monday saw a strikingly high presence of international collectors and curators. In fact, important collectors and curators were in attendance during the entire week. Among our regular guests were the American collectors Don and Mera Rubell, Michael and Susan Hort, Anita Zabludowicz from London, Gaby & Wilhelm Schürmann, Berlin, und Filiep Libeert from Belgium. Swiss collector Anette Bollag-Rotschild from Zurich and publisher / collector Michael Ringier could also be seen among the guests. Among the important curators and directors in attendance were the curator of this year’s Biennale Venice, Missmiliano Cioni, Caroline Bourgeois from the François Pinot Collection, Gregor Muir from the Institute of Contemporary Arts in London, Jeffrey Deitch from MOCA, Los Angeles, Edouard de Moussac from the international auction house Phillips, Karola Kraus from the Museum Moderner Kunst Stiftung Ludwig Wien, and Philipp Kaiser from the Museum Ludwig, Cologne.
The National Swiss Art Prize
The winners of the National Swiss Art Prize, Michael Meier and Christoph Franz, Zurich, resonated strongly with the public. Their spent grain footbath made subtle reference to the former function of the Warteck building: beer brewing.
The Performance Project
Much attention was showered on the daily changing performances with top quality artists such as Akio Suzuki and Aki Onda from Japan and Lubomyr Melnyk, Canada. The ninth edition of the Performance Project of LISTE was conceptualized by Fabian Schöneich, assistant curator at Kunsthalle Basel in collaboration with Audio Visual Arts of New York.
A presentation by LISTE’s special guest The Gallerist Programme, Amsterdam, provided special excitement: The British artist Jeremy Hutchison examined what effects are manifested when the Occupy movement becomes commercialized. Kunsthaus CentrePasquArt was a guest at LISTE and printed, among other things, wood cuts by Claudia Comte, Switzerland, on the premises. In addition, both the House of Electronic Arts Basel and Kaskadenkondensator Basel were again an integral part of the fair with their special presentations.
LISTE 19 will take place in Basel from June 16 through June 22, 2014.
Brief History of LISTE
At the end of the 1980s, a new, self-assured generation of gallerists and artists were coming of age. They had little chance of securing a space at Art Basel, the world’s most important art fair, though. In 1996, the first LISTE, a fair dedicated exclusively to that new generation, showed 36 galleries from 12 countries and was a resounding success!
Looking back over the past 18 years, we note that many, then unknown artists were making their international debut at LISTE. For example, the painter Wilhelm Sasnal, who was presented by Foksal Gallery of Warsaw, or Jim Lambie, with The Modern Institute, who presented a floor installation that was exhibited 10 years later at the Museum of Modern Art in New York.
Shown by neugerriemschneider, a then unknown artist named Elizabeth Peyton presented her small-format oil and water color pictures. Francesco Vezzoli’s video works were presented by Franco Noero. Steven Parrino, Carol Bove and Banks Violette were presented by Team of New York. The list of artists who got their start at LISTE is long.
This success story also played itself out with the galleries – among those that were at the time unknown but today belong to the most established, are: neugerriemschneider, Berlin; Eigen + Art, Berlin/Leipzig; Foksal Gallery Foundation, Warsaw; Kurimanzutto, Mexico City; Modern Art, London; The Modern Institute, Glasgow; Air de Paris and Emmanuel Perrotin, Paris; Massimo de Carlo, Milan; David Zwirner, Casey Kaplan and Team, New York.