Dasha Zhukova, Daphne Guinness Host Basel Event for Matthew Barney

Guess who was there?

Daphne Guinness, Dasha Zhukova Photo Credit: David Biedert Photography
Daphne Guinness, Dasha Zhukova Photo Credit: David Biedert Photography

Last night, the great and the good of the global art world congregated at the Kunstmuseum Basel for an evening celebrating the maverick American artist Matthew Barney, co-hosted by Credit Suisse and philanthropists Dasha Zhukova, Daphne Guinness, Eli Broad, and star journalist Tina Brown, CEO of Tina Brown Live Media.

Champagne flowed in the grand marble-floored institution, decorated for the occasion with delicate white peonies. Guests included hedge-fund billionaire Steve A. Cohen—more often spotted at auctions than hanging out at art fairs—travel baron Alexandre Chelma, auctioneer Simon de Pury, dealer and one-time MOCA director Jeffrey Deitch, and patron Maja Hoffmann.

Svetlana Uspenskaya and Alexey Kuzmichev Photo Credit: David Biedert Photography

Svetlana Uspenskaya and Alexey Kuzmichev
Photo Credit: David Biedert Photography

Guests were treated to a conversation between Brown and Barney, who discussed the making of the artist’s latest film River of Fundament. Loosely based on Norman Mailer’s 1983 novel Ancient Evenings, the six hour-long epic movie was created in collaboration with composer Jonathan Bepler. It premiered at the Brooklyn Academy of Music last February, and will be shown in Switzerland for the first time on June 19, at the Theater Basel.

Tina Brown, Matthew Barney Photo Credit: David Biedert Photography

Tina Brown, Matthew Barney
Photo Credit: David Biedert Photography

Barney is best known for his epic Cremaster Cycle, which he completed over eight years, between 1994 and 2002. River of Fundament is no less ambitious. Seven years in the making, the film involves several specular scenes, monumental sets, and tons of molten metal. Talking to Brown, the artist underlined the importance of creating performances “that could not be rehearsed.”

Anne Pasternak, Richard Chang, Rosy Wu and Jeffrey Deitch Photo Credit: David Biedert Photography

Anne Pasternak, Richard Chang, Rosy Wu and Jeffrey Deitch
Photo Credit: David Biedert Photography

After the talk, the august audience was ushered to the museum’s courtyard for an al fresco dinner, accompanied by a harp recital courtesy of Italian player Désirée Dell’Amore.


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