“Art Basel was a landmark show”

Outstanding presentations and vigorous sales marked Art Basel from 24-26 September 2021 in Basel. The first full-scale international art fair since 2019 attracted around 60,000 visitors. The complementary digital program "Art Basel Live" amplified participating galleries to a broad global audience.

Art Basel brought together 272 premier galleries from 33 countries and territories, presenting outstanding works across all media, from rare and historical masterpieces to new works by today’s emerging voices. In addition to showcasing exceptional art within its Galleries, Feature, Statements, and Edition sectors, the fair also presented 62 large-scale artworks in Art Basel Unlimited, 20 site-specific projects as part of Parcours, two performances on the “Messeplatz”, an ambitious Film program, as well as Conversations, the fair’s vibrant talks series.

Leading private collectors from across Europe, the Americas, the Middle East, and Africa attended this year, as well as curators and representatives from over 300 museums and institutions. The fair attracted an overall attendance of 60,000 throughout its VIP and public days.

The digital program “Art Basel Live” amplified the presentations on site in Basel and transferred the vibrancy and excitement of the fair to a broad global audience. Visitors from around the world explored the exhibiting galleries via an enhanced version of the Online Viewing Rooms, virtual tours and social media broadcasts.

Marc Spiegler, Global Director, Art Basel says: “This year’s Art Basel was a landmark show. The fair served as a place for making new discoveries and building new relationships in person, activities that were largely impossible for more than a year. This week represents the beginning of the art world coming together again, at scale, and the rejuvenation of the international art market.”

“Collectors returned to the show in a confident mood, sales were strong, and we look forward to meeting once again at Art Basel Miami Beach in December.”

Almine Rech-Picasso, Gallery Almine Rech (Brussels, Shanghai, Paris, London, New York, Aspen)

Numerous gallery owners also expressed their delight and satisfaction with the successful course of Art Basel under the special conditions. “This year’s Art Basel brought out the best in everyone,” says Valerie Carberry, Gallery Gray (Chicago, New York). “Sales have been very, very good”, emphasizes Stefan von Bartha, Gallery von Bartha (Basel, S-chanf). And David Zwirner, Gallery David Zwirner (New York, London, Paris, Hongkong), looks to the future with confidence: “This bodes well for Art Basel Miami Beach in December.”

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The Art Basel team attached great importance to the health safety of the people on site. Only people with a valid Covid certificate had access to the fair. The certificate was checked in a Covid certificate center set up especially for Art Basel, where visitors could also get tested. In addition, masks were mandatory in all exhibition halls.