May 9, 2017 - Art Basel - Art Basel
May 9, 2017

Art Basel

© Art Basel.

Art Basel
June 15–18, 2017

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Unlimited: Presenting 76 premier works

This year's edition of Unlimited will consist of 76 large-scale projects, presented by galleries participating in the fair. Curated for the sixth consecutive year by Gianni Jetzer, the sector will feature a wide range of presentations, from historically significant pieces to the latest contemporary works. Renowned as well as emerging artists will participate, including: Doug Aitken, Carl Andre, John Baldessari, Andrea Bowers, Chris Burden, Julian Charrière and Julius von Bismarck, LaToya Ruby Frazier, Carlos Garaicoa, Subodh Gupta, Jenny Holzer, Donna Huanca, Arthur Jafa, Barbara Kruger, Cildo Meireles, Bruce Nauman, Park Chan-kyong, Marwan Rechmaoui, Mickalene Thomas and Anicka Yi.

Presented across 16,000 square meters of exhibition space, Unlimited has provided galleries—since its introduction in 2000—with a unique opportunity to showcase monumental sculptures, video projections, wall paintings, photographic series and performance art that transcend the traditional art-fair stand.

In Cooking the World I (2017) Subodh Gupta recreates a shelter made from aluminum utensils, in which he carries out a cooking and eating performance, commemorating these ritualistic practices. BLISS (REALITY CHECK) (2017) by Donna Huanca is an elaborate installation comprised of a tableaux vivant designed to suspend the viewer between the role of a passive onlooker and an active performer. Underwater Pavilions (2017) by Doug Aitken is a video installation that explores three mirror sculptures moored to the ocean floor near California, physically connecting viewers to the expanse of the ocean. Messages from the Atlantic Passage (2017) by Sue Williamson confronts the viewer with a large-scale installation in which fishing nets are suspended from the ceiling, filled with engraved glass bottles, each inscribed with a slave name, country of origin and further details, representing the 12.5 million African individuals who were shipped to the New World between 1525 and 1866. Saving The Safe (2017) by Cuban artist Carlos Garaicoa aims to address the financial realm and the tensions it has caused in the last years. 

Other highlights include the last work made by Chris Burden, Ode to Santos Dumont (2015), which explores Burden’s childhood ambition of building functioning machines and is inspired by Alberto Santos-Dumont’s 20th century innovations in aviation. This will be the first time the work will be shown outside the United States. A Pilgrimage To Noah Purifoy’s Desert Art Museum (2016), the most recent work by LaToya Ruby Frazier, is comprised of thirteen prints and documents the site of the artist Noah Purifoy's former home and the disintegration of his sculptures in the harsh desert elements, where he spent the last 15 years of his life. Arthur Jafa's extensive and sustained research into black culture and his theorization of a black aesthetic have led him to produce Apex (2013), an eight-minute single channel work comprised of hundreds of images that flash momentarily before the viewers’ eyes. Leck (2012/2015) by artist duo FORT recreates a complete shop interior of the former chemist chain Schlecker, which went bankrupt in 2012. By extracting the objects from their everyday context, the artists bring their sculptural aspects to the fore. Skype Sweater (2010–17), a seminal early installation by Anicka Yi, consists of three sculptural elements displayed on pedestals, all unified by a billowing parachute. The materials and the methodologies used in this piece have proven to be the blueprints for her practice in the intervening years.

Citizen’s Forest (2016) by Park Chan-kyong invites the audience to walk through an installation  illustrating a ghostly procession of the Korean War victims. Michal Rovner’s most recent film installation Anubis (2016) is reminiscent of military surveillance footage, dramatizing the innocent scenes and the animals she documents in rural Israel. Blazon (2015) by Marwan Rechmaoui is a fabric installation seeking to deconstruct the physical and socio-political division of neighborhoods and districts in Beirut. Donald Moffett’s IMPEACH (2006) is an immersive sound work composed of ten alternating audio speakers resounding the powerful speech of Democratic Congressman John Lewis of Georgia as he defended President Bill Clinton during his impeachment hearings in 1998. Untitled (Our people are better than your people) (1994/2016) by Barbara Kruger uses language to thematize the powerful influence exercised upon human identity by the media and politics, which remains highly topical.

For the full artist list, please click here.

Art Basel, whose Lead Partner is UBS, will take place from Thursday, June 15 to Sunday, June 18, 2017 with the preview taking place on Tuesday and Wednesday, June 13 and 14, 2017. This year, 291 leading international galleries from 34 countries will present works ranging from the early 20th century to the most contemporary artists of today.

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