This year at Art Basel, the Artmatcher team will be present in Miami from Nov 30, 2021 – Dec 4, 2021 to unveil our MVP. Until then, pick up our early release in the Apple App Store and follow us on social media to learn about the VIP party we will be hosting.

For those of you who don’t know what Art Basel is, read on.

What Is Art Basel?

Art Basel is an annual international art fair that takes place in multiple locations around the world. It was founded by Marc Spiegler and Sam Keller in 1970 as a one-time celebration of modern art presented at the Hotel Eden Roc for members of Artforum magazine’s board of directors and their friends.

At that time, it was an event that only took place for a few days in Basel, Switzerland, and included as few as 20 galleries. But over time it has developed into a large commercial art fair with satellite events around the world.

Why Is It Called Art Basel?

The name of the event comes from its location in Basel, a city located on the Swiss/German border which is considered to be one of Europe’s art centers with over 500 galleries within walking distance.

Art Basel Miami Beach

Of the many events that happen globally, one of the three main fairs is Art Basel Miami Beach. It’s held each December at the Miami Beach Convention Center and lasts for four days. The fair is open to VIP attendees on Thursday when it begins with a public opening night party called ‘Preview’ that takes place immediately afterward until midnight.

On Friday and Saturday, the art show continues but by invitation only while Sunday is exclusively reserved.

When Does Art Basel Miami Take Place?

Every year, Art Basel Miami Beach takes place around the first week of December. The 2021 dates are Nov 30, 2021 – Dec 4, 2021.

Who Is Invited?

Art Basel hosts over 60 world-class galleries from 31 countries around the globe showcasing modern, contemporary, and mid-century artworks. A number of galleries are invited to participate by the event’s selection committee while others can apply through an application process that opens in early summer each year.

Artist Eligibility Requirements

Artists must have professional representation on a gallery level or above with proof of commercial sales history at auction houses or other galleries.

What Is Exhibited?

Art Basel exhibits works in all mediums that are intended for sale with the primary interest being contemporary art. Typical mediums include paintings, sculptures, drawings, photographs, video artworks, and installations. A committee of experts who are knowledgeable about the mediums presented at Art Basel participate in making decisions regarding what is exhibited each year.

Who Attends?

Art collectors, gallerists, artists, dealers, designers, consultants, and art lovers are the main attendees. The average attendance for Art Basel Miami Beach has increased by 80% over the past decade with some years seeing more than 30 thousand attendees.

This has led to more than $900 million USD worth of art being bought and sold during the weekend event over recent years with 75% of transactions taking place between private collectors, dealers, and artists.

How do you get into Art Basel?

Tickets to Art Basel are not free and can be acquired through a number of options. You can purchase tickets for the satellite events that take place around the world in cities such as Miami, Hong Kong, or London. Separate passes are required.

What is Art Basel really like?

It is a unique experience for any art lover to attend an international event. It’s like an entire city dedicated to modern and contemporary works of art including those in the medium of fresh fruit and tape!

Fresh Fruit and Tape – What Do You Mean?

That’s right, at the 2019 Art Basel Miami, an Italian artist Maurizio Cattelan duct-taped a banana to a wall and it became an overnight sensation. The piece titled  “The Comedian” sold for $120,000.

Are There Other Contemporary Art Fairs?

Of course, even in Miami at the same time. In fact, a lot of people ask if Art Basel is the same as Art Miami. But the answer is no. Art Basel and Art Miami are both contemporary art fairs taking place in Miami in early December, but the two are separate events.

Art Miami is a contemporary art fair that takes place at the same time and features works from galleries and dealers who are not participating in Art Basel.

The Artmatcher team will actually be canvasing both. So if you see us, give us a shout. We’d love to connect with you.

Be artful!