Art Basel 2019

We had the opportunity to visit the renown Art Basel Art Fair in Switzerland which took place 13 to 16 June 2019. According to the NY Times, there are over 300 international art fairs, but Art Basel with over 90,000 visitors annually, is the big daddy of them all and  we got to see why. It was a completely different experience to our visit to Art Basel in Miami Dec last year.

To go with the Magnitude of the fair, Art Basel showcases large scale works that don’t fit in the booths in a section called Unlimited. The large scale works in ‘Unlimited’, were  truly gargantuan.

One of our favourite was the inflatable sculpture Big Sneaker [The Nineties] which is a proportionally exact enlargement of Nike’s ‘Air Max, created by German artist Olaf Nicolai whose work often deals with acts of perception, translating blind spots. 

Here are some more large scale works, which also included the works of British Artist Sarah Lucas, which   we saw at the British Pavilion of the 56th Venice Biennale International Art Exhibition titled All The World’s Futures curated by the Okwui Enwezor, the first African to curate the event in its history. Sadly OKwui Enwezor has now passed away.

Great to see works by African American artists and African artists, including the works of Kehinde Wiley  in the middle below and the depiction of minorities and black culture.

Andy below by the American artist Barkley L. Hendricks, sold for $1.5 million on the opening night. Hendricks died in 2017. His works was included in the Tate Modern exhibition “Soul of a Nation: Art in the Age of Black Power”

We noticed an array of sculptures, including a sex doll priced at 85,000 Euros made from Thermoplastic plastic by Hans-Peter Feldsmann. A Male visitor could not resist, he proceeded to touch the doll and was promptly told off.


Here are some of our favourites from Art Basel, which included vibrant pieces, which we are know for at JonaQuestArt.

Here are some other satellite art fairs for those that don’t have very deep pockets  to visit during Basel Art week.

LISTE Art Fair

The LISTE Art Fair Basel is the leading international exhibition of contemporary art. Every year since 1996, a younger generation of galleries have  been showing artists who have outstanding representatives of the latest developments and tendencies in contemporary art. Here are some our favourites.

On Arrival we were greeted by a gigantic sculpture  that looked like Robocop.

Volta Basel

The Volta Basel’s art fair debuted in 2005 , with the aim to secure a platform for international galleries beyond Liste and market heavyweight Art Basel. This was one of the shows we really enjoyed with cutting edge creativity. We  are looking to be part of this show in 2020.




A new art fair  with a highly-curated group of dedicated exhibitors, showcasing the works of emerging and established artists at affordable prices from all over the world.  The photography works caught our attention the most.


Contemporary Basel

This is also a fairly new art fair, with an international collection of works on show at affordable prices compared to the other heavy weights exhibiting in Basel.

We leave you with a few tips to help you prepare for and enjoy your visit  to the next Art Basel.

  1. Book your hotel at least 6 months in advance to get a descent hotel at a more affordable price, as most hotels are fully book nearer the time
  2. We stayed at Dorint Hotel, which is within walking distant to Messe  Exhibition Halls where Art Basel is held
  3. Taxi rides to and from Basel Airport is between 45 – 65 CHF, apparently it is more expensive during Art Basel
  4. on the up side, you can get trams or buses to most places  in Basel and its Free. Your Hotel will provide you with the Free ticket on arrival
  5. You will need more  than a day to appreciate the works on display at Art Basel
  6. Research the galleries exhibiting before hand
  7. During your visit take breaks in between, there are lots of sitting areas, restaurants, bars where you can refuel
  8. Ladies, wear flats , I learnt the hard way
  9.  Visit Kunst Museum for some more cultural experiences

That’s it for now…. Hope you’ve enjoyed our post. Please comment and if you have any questions to help you with your visit to Basel feel free to contact us at


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