The fun and exciting world of Art Basel

Art Basel - Miami Beach 2017

Starting in early December, the Art Basel exhibition is coming in Miami to provide interesting and cutting-edge art installations from around the world for you to enjoy in America. The yearly tradition brings all kinds of media to the fore, from visual art to performances, and will prove to be an excellent way to entertain and educate yourself over the 7th to the 10th of December. From famous names like Damien Hirst to new artists of all kinds, the Art Basel exhibitions are sure to give you something that will feed your artistic soul and give you that dose of culture that you crave.

Contemporary Art - Art Basel Miami 2017
© Art Basel

So what is Art Basel?

Art Basel is an international art fair that stages shows in three major cities around the world – Basel, Switzerland; Hong Kong; and Miami Beach. Each show is divided into component parts with the aim to showcase all kinds of contemporary artwork from the already established to the completely fresh, emerging new faces.

Basquiat at Art Basel Miami 2016
Jean-Michel Basquiat | © Art Basel Van de Weghe Fine Art Gallery

Not only this, Art exhibition excels by utilizing the collaboration between the participating galleries with the host city’s local talent. This allows fresh artwork to be continually viewed and commented upon that is not only from all around the world but also local to the area. While it provides an excellent venue for purchasing art to collectors and galleries, it also serves as a museum for attracting large, international audiences to come and enjoy the new and vibrant art world.

Specific galleries must apply to be showcased within the Art Basel, which is then reviewed by a committee of international gallerists, ensuring a highly effective and brilliantly curated list of art at the final convention. After this process, the gallery is able to display all kinds of brilliant art and artists.

Art Basel Miami - Gallery show
© Art Basel Miami Urs Meile Art Gallery

The history of the Art Basel Exhibition

Beginning in 1970 by the Swiss gallerists Ernst Beyeler, Trudi Bruckner and Balz Hilt, the desire to create an international art fair inspired them to create Art Basel. An immediate success from the very outset, more than 16,000 visitors would attend the inaugural show, which represented 10 different countries, 30 publishers, and 90 different galleries.

In the 1980’s, looking to celebrate 150 years of photography, the exhibition showcased 16 galleries from the International Association of Photography Art Dealers, allowing them to present photos which covered the entire history of the medium. After this, the exhibition became one of the world’s leading venues for the proliferation of photography.

In the 1990’s, art exhibition once again opened its borders to varying media and decided to inaugurate the Art Film sector. This artistic venue was devoted to film by and about artists of all kinds and debuted at the Stadtkino Basel. To this day, the film component of Art Basel remains an integral component of the show and includes very impressive pieces.

In the early 2000’s, the introduction of the Art Unlimited platform was implemented, with the intention of “transcending the concept of the classic exhibition booth with an open-plan environment that hosts all types of ambitious contemporary media.” With this change, and also with the introduction to Miami Beach, where it made its first American debut, the art exhibition opened itself to all kinds of artistic expression and expanded the operation dramatically. It featured 160 galleries from 23 countries, attracted 30,000 visitors, and was an immediate success.

At this time, Art Basel launched Conversations, which was a series of panel discussions with leading figures in the art world. Some of the topics included first-hand information on the business of collecting and exhibiting art and would include panelists that ranged from prominent art collectors, museum directors, curators, artists, and more.

Then after Art Basel Miami, its inaugural show was introduced in Hong Kong in 2014, which, again, enjoyed a massive success.

Art Basel Initiatives

By interacting with the greater art world and collaborating with various parties, Art Basel has created initiatives that have proliferated art and artistic ideas all over the globe. With these initiatives, artists and art from all over the world will be much easier to showcase and give attention towards.

  • Art Basel Cities
    This project between various cities worldwide and Art Basel strives to create cultural events and various types of artistic programming throughout the year. In collaboration with the city’s local art scene, develops a program based on the development goals of the host city.
  • BMW Art Journey Award
    This grant supports various emerging creative people and enables them to go on “an artistic journey” of a personal definition. The chosen artist is allowed to go anywhere in the world to explore new themes, ideas, and concepts, and create new and varied pieces of artwork.
  • The Crowdfunding Initiative
    A partnership with massive amounts of potential, this collaboration with Kickstarter provides visibility and generates grassroots support for projects and non-profits around the world. These can include everything from artistic residencies, educational programs, public installations, and various other events and activities.

The Art Basel Miami show

Ever since the first show in 2015, the Art Basel: Miami has been a monumental success. Along with unprecedented levels of attendance and collaboration, the show also hosted many first-time collectors, from countries including Cambodia, Ethiopia, Nicaragua, Romania, Togo, and Zimbabwe.

The show is broken up into a variety of sectors which all showcase a new a different way to convey the artistic desires of a variety of artists. By providing so many different variations, Art Basel is able to give a thorough and significant coverage to all kinds of art and artists.


Galleries - Art Basel - Miami BEach 2017
© Art Basel

For the Art Basel Miami 2017 show, over 200 Modern and Contemporary art galleries will be displaying works by over 4,000 artists. With installations ranging from paintings and sculptures to film and digital art, visitors will be able to experience everything from young, new artists to museum-caliber art.


Nova Show - Art Basel - Miami Beach 2017
© Art Basel

The Nova segment is designed to present one, two, or three artists showcasing their works created within the past three years. This sector combines fresh pieces from the artist’s studio with strong content from their recent past, to create an interesting assembly of thought.


Art Basel -The Sow Postions -Miami Beach 2017
© Art Basel

Within this sector, various curators, critics, and collectors are able to discover new talent from all over the world. They are provided with a platform for viewing a single artist presenting one major piece at Art Basel. Budding artists from all over the world are just waiting for an audience to see their breathtaking pieces.


Art Basel - Edtion The Show - Miami Beach 2017
© Art Basel

The sector showcases editioned works, prints, and multiples of renowned artists, allowing visitors and curators alike to see significant and rare publications of global art. This allows a variety of people, from experts to the public, to explore and interact with some of the most interesting art pieces of our time.


Art Basel - Kabinette - Miami Beach 2017
© Art Basel

This sector takes place in a delineated space within an artist’s booth and showcases a curated exhibition of their work. This sector also provides thematic group exhibitions, art-historical showcases, and solo shows. The themes this sector provides encourages discussion of all kinds and brings awareness to many issues.


Art Basel - The Show - Survey - Miami Beach 2017
© Art Basel

For the precise Art Basel historical projects, Survey is presented to showcase them. This sector may represent individual artists but tends to center around a showcase of a range of cultures, generations and artistic approaches. In bringing together disparate concepts, themes, and cultural milestones, the Survey sector is fascinating beyond belief.


Art Basel - Miami Beach 2017 - The Show - Public
© Art Basel

Collins Park, will be hosting large-scale sculptures and installations that are available for the entire public to enjoy at their leisure. The Brass Museum of Art and MGM Resorts Art and Culture are fellow collaborators. By allowing everyone in the greater Miami area access to some breathtaking and significant pieces, Art Basel is giving back to the population in a big way.


Art Basel - The Show - Film - Miami Beach 2017
© Art Basel

Presenting a wide range of interesting and visceral films, this sector boasts outdoor screenings taking place at SoundScape Park, where art is projected onto a 7,000 square foot wall of the New World Center. In addition, New York film curator Marian Masone selects a feature-length film for a Colony Theatre screening.


Art Basel - The Show - Magazines
© Art Basel

Various global art publications display their magazines in single- and collective magazine stands all throughout the exhibition, giving every visitor the chance to patronize their favorite art publication. The vast variety of art periodicals available from the exhibition is staggering.

All information regarding attendance and tickets can be found here, which also includes public days for the entire run of the Art Basel show. Transportation, accommodation and other information can be found here.

Pushing Art into the forefront of our cultural consciousness

It’s important to remember and interact with exhibitions like the Art Basel exhibitions because art awareness and dissemination is an important cultural milestone for any city. By creating a vibrant and living art scene in Miami, Art Basel is able do disseminate and share brilliant artists and art with not only America but the world at large.

Join us at the 2017 show in Miami in December and see some of the finest artwork from all around the world!

Photo credits © Art Basel official organization

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