What Not to Miss at Art Basel Hong Kong This Weekend
There are 248 galleries at the fair. Here are 9 booths to look out for.
In its seventh edition, Art Basel Hong Kong is stepping into its role as a keystone fair with apparent ease as nearly 40,000 overseas collectors, dealers, and enthusiasts have flooded the metropolitan island for five days of sales and events. Hong Kong was in the headlines before the fair even opened thanks to Companion—KAWS’s largest sculpture to-date—which appeared floating in Victoria Harbor last week, stirring a social media flurry.
Soon after the fair opened to VIPs on Tuesday, word quickly spread about the big-ticket works (a $19 million Picasso at Luxembourg & Dayan) and sold-out booths (David Zwirner). But with the 248-gallery fair set to open to the public on Friday, much more remains to be discovered. Before art-fair malaise takes hold, here are 9 booths worth seeking out.
An array of unexpected mixed-media combinations are on view at the Galerie Barbara Wien booth, with works by Haegue Yang, Nina Canell, Ian Kiaer, Shimabuku, and Eric Baudelaire. Look out for Seoul-born Haegue Yang’s most recent sculptures, which evocatively draw together tree-root carvings, basket-weaving traditions, and industrial materials like turbine vents and plastic twine. This November, Miami’s Bass Museum of Art will host a solo exhibition of her work.
The Munich-based gallery has works on view that straddle the edge of fiction and reality. In photographs by artists Chen Wei and Thomas Struth, for example, what appear to be snapshots of everyday life are in fact carefully constructed and arranged scenes that have been lit and captured. The gallery will also show works by Ma Ke, PGoshka Macuga, Thu Van Tran, and Anders Clausen.
The Mexico City- and New York-based gallery presents a group show of artists including Abraham Cruzvillegas, Danh Vo, Adrián Villar Rojas, Gabriel Orozco, and Rirkrit Tiravanija, offset by artists who participated in the short-lived Signals London group (1964–66). The ethos of Signals London was to bring all artistic endeavors under one umbrella, with poetry, painting, dance, and architecture existing together—in the same vein as kurimanzutto‘s program.
The A-list figures of Modern and Contemporary art are showcased at Gagosian ,including René Magritte, Takashi Murakami, Christopher Wool, Richard Serra and Zao Wou-Ki, among many others. The museum-quality display is sure to make it a fair must. Zeng Fanzhi, whose dazzling Rooster (2019) is on view, is also the curator of “Cézanne, Morandi, and Sanyu” the recently opened exhibition on view at Gagosian‘s Hong Kong flagship.
Pearl Lam Galleries enters its seventh edition of the fair with an international set of artists whose works straddle the boundaries between traditional media. Among them are Chun Kwang Young, whose work incorporates elements of painting and sculpture. A recent, and vividly hued, work from his famed Aggregation series is featured alongside the near-sculptural oil paintings of Chinese artist Zhu Jinshi. Meanwhile, the gallery has two solo exhibitions on view in the city: one of American artist Leonardo Drew at the Pedder Building gallery, and the other by Chinese artist Zhou Yangming at their H Queen’s gallery.
Mexico City’s Galería OMR is known for its roster of cutting-edge contemporary Mexican artists. Fittingly, the gallery has curated a solo booth of sculpture and prints on cardboard by Jose Dávila, whose practice, often humorously, reflects on the legacy and contradictions of 20th-century art and architecture.
Kukje Gallery is an Art Basel Hong Kong mainstay, and its latest presentation at the fair underscores a mix of contemporary and historical works. Special focus is placed on the 1960s South Korean school of Dansaekhwa artists, including Kwon Young-Woo and Park Seo-Bo. Also featured are new works by contemporary Korean artists Gimhongsok, Kyungah Ham, and Suki Seokyeong Kang.
The Italian-based Alfonso Artiaco Gallery comes to Art Basel Hong Kong with a group presentation that shows off the wide breadth of their stable. Minimalists like Carl Andre and Sol Lewitt are shown alongside more contemporary practitioners such as Darren Almond, who was shortlisted for the Turner Prize in 2005.
de Sarthe Gallery returns to the fair with a strong lineup of artists from Asia and beyond. The booth features familiar names like Zao Wou-Ki—now the highest-selling Chinese painter of his generation—and Gerhard Richter, an international crowd-pleaser, plus a swath of emerging Chinese artists such as Andrew Luk and Lin Jingjing, who’s wry advertisements-cum-artworks are especially prescient.
Art Basel Hong Kong is on view at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre through March 31, 2019.
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