Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre
2013.05.22 Wed - 2013.05.26 Sun
Opening Exhibitions
05/22/2013 18:00
1 Harbour Road, Wanchai, Hong Kong
+852 3127 5529
Opening Hours
Thursday, May 23, 12 pm to 7 pm Friday, May 24, 12 pm to 7 pm Saturday, May 25, 12 pm to 7 pm Sunday, May 26, 12 pm to 5 pm
Magnus Renfrew

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ArtBasel Hong Kong
according to Chris Moore

One of my favorites: Aaron Curry at the spectacular Michael Werner booth (Courtesy Michael Werner Gallery, New York and London).

ArtBasel, mightiest of all art fairs, has conquered Hong Kong, at least for a few days and for those who care about such things, like us.

The exhibition design was airy, clean, minimalist even — not very Asian but only some fretted about that (not I). This year the separation between first and third floor seemed less important but still critical — first floor, front, most desirable. Big galleries had a competitive edge by dint of sheer power. Small galleries had a competitive edge through price. Galleries in the middle had to work. One issue here is categorization. One of the things that works well at ArtBasel in Basel is that the modernist galleries tend to be on the first floor and the more cutting-edge ones (sorry, I meant to say contemporary) on the second floor. A modernist section for both West and East is needed in Hong Kong too.

A still from Li Ran’s “Another Modern Artist” 2011, at Aike Dell’arco in the Discoveries section of ArtBasel Hong Kong. I am in love with this film.

My top eight works for ArtBasel Hong Kong

(a somewhat cavalier list, but hey whatever)

Li Ran’s video at Aike Dell’arco, the eyelectrifying installation of Aaron Curry at Michael Werner, Jose Davila’s thrilling balancing sculpture (and balancing photographs) at Max Wigram, Zhou Xiaohu’s manifesto “America Loves Me,” a painting/video work at Long March Space, and Judy Ledgerwood’s “Monster Love” at 1301PE, with special mentions for Alex Israel’s “Sky Backdrop” (Peres Projects, Berlin) and The Propeller Group’s time-bomb project (10 Chancery Lane). Rounding out my top eight picks is a tiny but perfect still-life painting of oysters and a knife from 1938 by Georges Braque at Acquavella.

Jose Davila “Untitled” comes apart in small car-enameled pieces that balance in a kind of infinity loop. This was definitely my favorite sculpture.

Much overlooked at the fair was a perfect, small exhibition of Heinz Mack at Beck & Eggeling. Here “Entwurf für ein glasernes Portal” (“Proposal for Glass Portals”) 1966.

Judy Ledgerwood’s sparse, wonderful “Monster Love” 2010 at 1301PE (Los Angeles)

The Propeller Group’s “The History of the Future”, installation, project, video, everything.

Chen Wei’s latest at Leo Xu Projects. It works best with the reflections. The dinner hosted by Leo Xu for Chen Wei was also a highlight, with Dominique and Sylvain Levy and Heidi Voet and Michael Lin at our table. It was also another opportunity to say hi to Charles Guarino.

Alex Israel, “Sky Backdrop,” 2013. Heaven seen through extra-bit rose-tinted Hollywood sunglasses (Courtesy Peres Projects, Berlin).

Mario Cristiani of Galleria Continua with artist and randian contributor Girolamo Marri (look out for their interview, coming soon).

Terence Koh, “The Road to The Winterland of My Discontent, I Know Not Where I Lead,” 2007 (at Sean Kelly).

Lin Jingjing’s arresting Warhol-play “Public Memory 1″ 2011 at de Sarthe Gallery was sold to a leading U.S. collector.

Michael Riedel’s digital prints “Untitled (Packing Material Blue)”, “(…Yellow)” and “(…Turquoise)”, all 2013, at David Zwirner.

This gorgeous photograph by Chen Qiulin “Twilight” 2009 at A Thousand Pleateaus, the only gallery from Chengdu represented.

Zhou Xiaohu, “America Loves Me,” 2012, at Long March Space conjured Josef Beuys and Neo Rauch and the Leipziger School. Long March also sold the giant MadeIn S&M bouncy-cathedral to the White Rabbit collection in Sydney.