Photographic Exchange

Staged in correspondence with Art Basel week, photo basel is an opportunity for visitors to the city to explore the dynamic scenes that are being captured by an array of leading photographers. As Switzerland’s first and only international art fair dedicated to the photographic medium, the fair provides an in-depth survey of imagery being produced in the field, from classic to contemporary. Each year, it welcomes an array of international galleries and represented artists to propose and foster the dialogue and exchange between all photography creatives, collectors and aficionados.

Running from 14 to 18 June, photo basel 2017 will be held at the Volkshaus Basel, just a few blocks away from the acclaimed Art Basel at Messeplatz. Though relatively new to the international fair circuit – having only been established in 2015 – it has grown to become one of the most prominent photography fairs in the German speaking world. This year, a selection of 34 galleries from 16 countries and five continents will be exhibiting across the weekend. These establishments, both young and more established, have lined-up a unique array of works from a total of 100 artists.

Amongst the selection will be Reine Paradis, represented by Gallerie Catherine & Andre Hug. The artist constructs narrative photographs by staging herself as the central figure in a surreal landscape. In many of her images, Paradis uses bright clothing to interact with an equally dominant, colour filled landscape. Shot in locations throughout America, the series Jungle takes us on an introspective journey across a symbolic and chromatic world, projected above the limit of reality and imagination. Conceptualised before shooting, Paradis makes sketches of the site, costumes and props to use as a blue print when photographing the final scene.

Experimental photographer Julia Baier’s pictures will be brought to photo basel by Galerie Albrecht. Following a trip to Iceland in 2015, Baier has assembled a series of black and white images captured through the panoramic function of her smartphone camera and the motion of a car. A country packed with extremities due to its location on two dispersing continental plates, Iceland is a unique place to document: black lava rock is buried in snow, moss grows on hard surfaces, and hot water thrives in cold air. Baier conscientiously uses the fleeting aesthetic of the smartphone with the movement of a vehicle to emphasise the fragility of the land in humankind’s hands.

Galerie Paris is set to exhibit work by Vincent Fournier, an artist whose practice reveals a passion for science, technology and their mysteries, as well as an interest in utopian worlds. In Space Project, Fournier has mixed a historic and documentary vision of the spacial adventure with staged situations fed by the cinema and his childhood memories.

Alongside these exhibitors in the Main sector, photo basel introduce a new platform devoted to the moving image. This first edition of tape/basel features recent international works programmed by photo basel Director Sven Eisenhut and freelance Canadian and Swiss Basel-based Curator Chantal Molleur. Special guest Basel gallery balzer projects join an extensive line-up of tape/basel artists: Mika Taanila, Kerstin Honeit, Olivier Cheval, Almond Chu, Yvon Chabrowski, Chou Ching-hui, Stacey Steers, Nemanja Nikolic and Deborah Oropallo.

photo basel, 16-18 June, Volkshaus Basel.


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1. Vincent Fournier, Mars Desert Research Station #4. Courtesy of the artist and Galerie Paris.
2. Reine Paradis, Starlake. Courtesy of the artist and Gallerie Catherine & Andre Hug.