Art Basel’s Paris+ fair to show ambitious commissions across city’s major landmarks

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Courtesy of the artist and Michael Janssen Berlin

The organisers of Paris+ par Art Basel—the highly anticipated contemporary fair due to open in the French capital next month (20-23 October)—have revealed details of the event’s accompanying public art programme known as Sites.

The inaugural edition includes a wealth of ambitious commissions such as the largest installation to date by the Polish-born artist Alicja Kwade. Au cours des Mondes (2022), located in the Place Vendôme, comprises a set of spheres, reflecting simultaneity of time and space. Kwade is represented by Kamel Mennour gallery in Paris. Meanwhile, the Israeli artist Omer Fast will present his installation Karla (2020) in the Chapelle des Petits-Augustins des Beaux-Arts de Paris.

Omer Fast’s Untitled M.B. (Ghost) (2020)

Courtesy of GB agency and the artist; Photo: Aurélien Mol

Sites fills the gap left by the popular Hors les Murs outdoor sculpture event pioneered by Fiac, the veteran French fair that lost its autumn slot earlier this year to MCH Group, the owner of the Art Basel fairs. An unnamed French journalist says that Hors les Murs was an “essential part of the Fiac brand; it will be interesting to see how Sites engages the public beyond the fair.”

Another key strand of Sites is an exhibition, entitled La Suite de l’Histoire, in the grounds of the Jardin des Tuileries, part of the Musée du Louvre. “The exhibition examines the multi-layered history of the Jardin des Tuileries, including its political and public dimensions, through the work of artists whose practices often subvert and reimagine the role of art in the public realm,” say the organisers in a statement.

Stijn Ank’s The Phoenix (2022)

Courtesy of the artist

The exhibition curator Annabelle Ténèze, the director of Les Abattoirs, Musée – Frac Occitanie Toulouse, brings together more than 20 works including Phone User 4 (outdoor) (2022) by the German artist Judith Hopf and Guardians (2022) by the Danish artist Nina Beier, who is represented by the Vienna-based gallery Croy Nielsen and Standard in Oslo. La Suite de l’Histoire also encompasses a solo project by the African-American artist Thaddeus Mosley in the landscaped garden at the Musée National Eugène-Delacroix.

Crucially, all of the works on show in Sites are for sale. “The applications for Sites at the Jardin des Tuileries were open to all galleries, irrespective of their participation in Paris+ par Art Basel,” a statement says. Sites is supported by the US jewellery company David Yurman founded by the sculptor David Yurman and his wife, Sybil, a ceramicist.

The inaugural Conversations programme is curated by Pierre-Alexandre Mateos and Charles Teyssou. Speakers will tackle topics such as “What’s next for the French art market?” and “Sex and Art along the Seine”. The talks will take place in the Bal de la Marine, a docked boat next to the Tour Eiffel. Paris+ par Art Basel will take place at the Grand Palais Éphémère.

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