The week also saw this wonderful city playing host to a range of satellite contemporary art shows including Liste, Volta, and Scope, as well as a selection of exceptional museum shows from Renoir at the Kunstmuseum to Jeff Koons at Fondation Beyeler, which run until August and September, respectively.
Consensus agrees that this year’s edition of Art Basel was one of the best yet. The only improvement would be a few more performances. Abramovic has thrown down the gauntlet, and fingers are crossed for the return of the charming French gallery owner Emmanuel Perrotin’s routine in a Maurizio Cattelan penis suit.
In London, the traveling circus of art followers has descended for the major auction series of Impressionist and modern art this week, headed by Joan Miró’s monumental Peinture (Étoile Bleue) from 1927 at Sotheby’s and Pierre-Auguste Renoir’s Baigneuse (1888) at Christie’s. The sales results will set the tone for the subsequent sales of contemporary art next week at Sotheby’s and Christie’s.
Sotheby’s neatly curated sale of 80 lots is led by a phenomenal Glenn Brown (1998) landscape from his famed sci-fi series, The Tragic Conversion of Salvador Dali (After John Martin), priced at £2.2 million to £2.8 million.
The following evening will be watched with bated breath as rival Christie’s presents their biggest ever contemporary sale in London, with projected total evening sales of between £100 million to £140 million. Christie’s evening sale catalogue carries Francis Bacon’s outstanding Study for Self-Portrait on its back cover. Let’s hope it sells at least for the sake of Christie’s owner, the French luxury-goods baron François Pinault.
Finally, please don’t miss dOCUMENTA (13), an Art Summit that runs for 100 days in the outpost of Kassel in Germany and is dedicated to artistic research and imaginative expression by 190 artists from around the world.
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