Ah, Basel. The art fair! The parties! The grilled bratwurst at Liste! The Spiegler! The lazy mornings being borne along by the current in the Rhine in one’s Kimberley Vienna swimsuit (that’s Kimberley from the fine television series Made In Chelsea, I’ll have you know). Of course the Rhine can be choppy at the best of times which is why I’ll be enquiring after the first item on this week’s wishlist: Pedro Cabrita Reis’s work One Line (horizontal), Two Circles Underneath , 2014, from Peter Freeman’s stand at Art Basel before I dive in. Those tyres could certainly come in handy as conceptually-orientated floatation devices, I can tell you.
Of course Basel is about seeing and being seen, particularly at the marvellous Kunsthalle Bar where dealers and collectors of all generations roll back the years whilst dancing vigorously to Kanye West or the inimitable Rock Me Amadeus by Falco. Whilst drinking over-priced bottled lager, I’ll be attempting to take as many selfies as I can with art-world luminaries such as Klaus Biesenbach and posting them feverishly to Instagram. Of course I could just cut out the middle man (erm, that’s you Klaus!) and purchase the second item on my wishlist, Amalia Ulman’s film work of her Instagram project Excellences & Perfections available from Arcadia Missa at Liste for around £800 in an edition of 3.
I shall of course towards the end of the evening at the Kunsthalle Bar, muscle my way towards the DJ booth with the third item on this week’s wishlist – a copy of the album 1998 by Turkish progressive neo-thrash metal group Nekropsi. The group’s drummer is the Turkish artist Cevdet Erek who the more well-learned amongst my readers might remember from Documenta 13 or indeed the 7th Asia Pacific Triennial. In Basel he is showing with AKINCI Gallery at Volta, a fair that has moved so many times during its time in Basel that no-one has the foggiest idea anymore where it is.
My final item on this week’s wishlist is 100,000 shares in Enphase, the Californian company who are in the business of developing microinverter systems as well as a software portal that helps customers manage their solar power systems. My confident punt in alternative energy stocks is a gift to Rirkrit Tiravanija, architects Nikolaus Hirsch/Michel Müller, and chef Antto Melasniemi for their splendidly right-on installation DO WE DREAM UNDER THE SAME SKY that has pride of place outside Art Basel on the Messeplatz. This humble bamboo shelter, where visitors are gently encouraged to debate, share food and pay what they think is fair or perhaps do the washing up (roll up those sleeves Don and Mera!) whilst the structure gently thrums to its alternative energy sources. Splendid and a wonderful place for all those Ultra High Net Worth collectors to relax, kick-back after a hard afternoon’s shopping and congratulate themselves on making the world just a little bit better for all of us.
Online exclusive published on 17 June 2015.