Art Basel’s Conversations series presents stimulating panel discussions on topics concerning the global contemporary art scene. Prominent members of the international artworld – artists, gallerists, curators, collectors, architects, critics, and many other cultural figures – each offer unique perspectives on producing, collecting, and exhibiting art. Curated

by Mari Spirito, Founding Director of Protocinema, Istanbul/New York.

Videos of the panels will be available after the show on our website at

Wednesday, June 13 to Sunday, June 17

10am onwards in Hall 1.1. auditorium, free public access.

From Friday to Sunday, the 1pm panels take place on Messeplatz as part of this year’s Messeplatz Project.


10am to 11:30am

June 13

Premiere Artist Talk


June 14


What can a Biennial do?

4pm to 5pm Artist Talk Performance Beyond the Body

Ed Atkins Artist, Berlin Jay Pather Adjunct Curator for Performance, Zeitz MOCAA, Cape Town RoseLee Goldberg Founding Director and Curator of Performa, New York

Moderated by Kathy Noble Writer and Curator, London Performance in the art context has had a great effect on both

the role of the viewer/participant, and also on the object (the perception of the artwork). Given developments in the digital realm, such as animation and interactive software, relationships between the body and performer have taken major steps. What are the limitations of performative arts, if any? Could performance exist without a body?

5pm to 6pm Art Market Talk Ethics of Exporting Gallery Models

Massimo De Carlo Founder, Massimo De Carlo, Milan/Hong Kong/London David Maupin Co-Founder, Lehmann Maupin, New York/Hong Kong/Seoul Liza Essers Owner and Director, Goodman Gallery, Johannesburg/Cape Town

Moderated by Anna Brady Associate Art Market Editor, The Art Newspaper, London

Galleries developed in Western markets have become increasingly global by expanding in parallel to the growth of the interconnected and highly-networked business field. What does it mean for culturally diverse artworld professionals to adopt these gallery models? How do galleries support art communities across regions? Or do they even hinder them? Gallerists with diverse cultural backgrounds operating galleries on more than one continent discuss how galleries have adapted to survive in several locales, and evaluate the ethics of exporting gallery models while respecting different ways of working.

Michael Rakowitz Michael Rakowitz Artist, New York

Chus Martínez Curator and Head of the Art Institute HGK FHNW, Basel

Iraqi-American artist Michael Rakowitz discusses his work with curator and art historian Chus Martínez. Rakowitz is best known for conceptual work conceived to exist outside a gallery context and has exhibited worldwide.

3pm to 4pm Museum Talk Museums in a Global Narrative

Manuel Rabaté Director, Louvre Abu Dhabi, Abu Dhabi Richard Armstrong Director, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and Foundation, New York

Moderated by Jane Morris Editor-at-Large, The Art Newspaper, Cultureshock, London

Increasingly, the world’s most respected museums have expanded their reach beyond their own homelands. This panel investigates what it means to bring an institution to new audiences across different cultures.

Ralph Rugoff Artistic Director, 2019 Venice Biennale and Director, Hayward Gallery, London Zoe Butt Artistic Director, The Factory Contemporary Arts Centre, and Co-Curator, Sharjah Biennial 14, Ho Chi Minh City

Eva González-Sancho Curator, Oslo Biennale 2019, Oslo Shwetal A. Patel Researcher and Writer, London

Moderated by András Szántó Author and Cultural Strategy Consultant, New York

Biennials provide a point of convergence for the artworld, expose large audiences to art, and catalyze interest in cities and regions with global aspirations. But along with their popularity also come questions and concerns, for example: How can such enormous events achieve impact and propose a strong curatorial point of view?

2pm to 3pm Art Market Talk Blockchain and the Artworld

Simon Denny Artist, Berlin Robert Norton Founder and CEO, Verisart, London Kelani Nichole Founder, Transfer and Director, The Current, New York

Moderated by Tim Schneider Art Business Reporter, artnet News, and Founder, The Gray Market, New York

Artists, curators, and visionaries come together to discuss the potential impact of blockchain on art, the art community, and the world overall.

4pm to 5pm

Art World Talk

Sexism in the Art World

Julieta Aranda Artist and Editor of E-Flux Journal, Berlin/New York Hannah Weinberger Artist, Basel Sandra Mujinga Artist, Malmö/Oslo

Moderated by Elvia Wilk Writer and Editor, Berlin/New York

This panel brings together a range of voices and perspectives on the issue of sexism in the art community, how it is emerging from the shadows, and constructive ways to move forward.

3pm to 4pm

Artist Talk

Artists’ Philantropy and Social Responsibility

5pm to 6pm

Museum Talk

Focus – The Rise of the Single-Artist Museum

Emily Jacir Artist, Founding Director, Dar Yusuf Nasri Jacir for Art and Research Matteo Lucchetti Exhibitions and Public Program Curator, BAK, basis voor actuele kunst, and Artistic Co-Director, Visible Project, Utrecht Zina Saro Wiwa Artist, New York

Moderated by Yona Backer Founding Partner, Third Streaming, LLC, New York

The number of artist-endowed foundations has grown rapidly in the past years. This rising impulse for artists to set up foundations and non-profits that support younger artists or their local communities today plays an ever more significant role in shaping cultural philanthropy.

Stein Olav Henrichsen Director, The Munch Museum, Oslo Thomas Schütte Artist, Düsseldorf Nina Zimmer Director, Kunstmuseum Bern – Zentrum Paul Klee, Bern

Moderated by András Szántó Author and Cultural Strategy Consultant, New York

Directors from some of the world’s leading single-artist museums assess their legacy and debate their future.

Friday June 15 10am to 11:30am Art World Talk

Society, Politics, and the Art System Lauren Bon Artist, Metabolic Studio, Los Angeles

Laura Raicovich Curator, New York Ahmet Öğüt Artist, Berlin

Moderated by Stephanie Bailey Editor-in-Chief, Ocula, London/Hong Kong In a moment of great societal change, where growing

numbers of artists across the globe are making art about social justice, this conversation focuses on social justice in the art system itself. How are the roles of patrons, museum directors, and curators shifting to support voices for social change and where might they be falling short?

1pm to 2pm Conversations on Messeplatz Self-Construction, Self-Governance

Santiago Cirugeda Architect, Recetas Urbanas, and ‘Basilea’ Artist, Sevilla David Juárez Latimer-Knowles Architect, Founding Member of Straddle3, Barcelona Patti Anahory Architect, Cape Verde

Moderated by Baharak Tajbakhsh Architect, Basel The panelists discuss the active role we have as citizens to

intervene, reflect upon, and transform a given environment. 2pm to 3pm Art Market Talk

The Impact of Data on the Market Dr Clare McAndrew Founder, Art Economics, Dublin

Josh Baer Advisor and Publisher, Baer Faxt, New York How have major shifts in art market studies and data

distribution affected art-market growth and fluidity? What effects have yet to come? How do private collections access and use these new modes?

3pm to 4pm Artist Talk Lynn Hershman Leeson

Lynn Hershmann Leeson Artist, San Francisco Sabine Himmelsbach Director, HeK (House of Electronic Arts Basel), Basel

Moderated by Dr. Maxa Zoller Curator of Art Basel’s Film Sector, Cairo Coinciding with Lynn Hershman Leeson’s first solo show

in Switzerland at HeK (House of Electronic Arts Basel), this conversation takes on the artist’s long-term work and obsessions of biological progress, developments in artificial intelligence, and scientific research on antibodies.

4pm to 5pm

Creative Cities Talk

Sustainable City Development – The Role of Art

Artists’ Influencers Katharina Grosse Artist, Berlin

Sarah Sze Artist, New York Moderated by Hans Ulrich Obrist Artistic Director,

Serpentine Galleries, London

This series brings together artists Katharina Grosse and Sarah Sze, speaking about their own and each other’s work, and how Grosse’s work inspired and informed Sze. This conversation investigates the use of gesture and celestial scale to push towards potentially new ways of thinking.

The Artist and the Gallerist Kamel Mennour Owner, kamel mennour, Paris/London

Mohamed Bourouissa Artist, Paris Moderated by Alexie Glass-Kantor Executive Director, Artspace, Sydney

A conversation about the unique relationship between the artist and gallerist. Kamel Mennour speaks with Mohamed Bourouissa about how they met, how they came to work together, and how their working relationship developed.

1pm to 2pm Conversations on Messeplatz Techne Techno Tech

Isabel Lewis ‘Basilea’ Artist, Dancer, Electronic Music Producer, Berlin Claire Tancon Curator, Writer, Researcher, Sharjah Biennial 14 Curator, New Orleans Catherine Wood Senior Curator International Art (Performance), Tate Modern, London

Moderated by Andrea Lissoni Senior Curator, International Art (Film), Tate Modern, London

This conversation with artist Isabel Lewis focuses on the meaning of contemporary rituals of gathering.

2pm to 3pm Artist Talk Different Histories, Different Futures

Nedko Solakov Artist, Sofia Gianni Jetzer Curator of Art Basel’s Unlimited sector, and Curator-at-Large, Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington D.C.

The installations in Art Basel’s Unlimited sector share untold stories from multiple perspectives to bring viewers alternate views. Artist and curator come together to discuss presented artworks and how reconsideration of history has the potential to shift the trajectory of our futures.

3pm to 4pm Artist Talk Haegue Yang

Haegue Yang Artist, Berlin/Seoul Ylmaz Dziewior Director, Museum Ludwig, Cologne

A conversation between an artist and a curator on the occasion of Haegue Yang receiving the 2018 Wolfgang Hahn Prize and her first-ever survey exhibition and catalogue raisonné titled ‘ETA 1994–2018’, at The Museum Ludwig, Cologne.

Cecilia Alemani Director and Chief Curator of High Line Art, and Artistic Director, Art Basel Cities: Buenos Aires, New York Anita Dube Artist, and Curator, Kochi-Muziris Biennale 2018, New Delhi Joanna Warsza Artistic Director, Public Art Munich 2018, Munich

Moderated by Elke Buhr Editor in Chief, Monopol Magazin, Berlin Artists and art professionals are working on new forms of

urban growth to get ‘in front’ of change and participate in equitable possibilities. Is this realistic? Can art be part of community building in which the community is empowered and not displaced?

5pm to 6pm

Collector Talk

How to Buy Art

Philippe Charpentier Co-Owner and Director, mor charpentier, Paris

Monique Burger Owner, Burger Collection, Hong Kong Herman Steyn Executive Chairman, Prescient Group, and Co-Founder, Scheryn Art Collection, Cape Town

Moderated by Alexander Forbes Executive Editor, Artsy, New York

Collecting art is as personal or public as each collector

chooses to be. This conversation brings together views from both the buyer and the seller. What to look for? What commitments are made when buying art, and to whom? How to balance ‘buyer’s remorse’ and impulsive-buys, along with trusting intuition, and negotiating codes of ethics will also be discussed.


10am to 11:30am

June 16

Artist Talk

Artists’ Influencers Katharina Grosse Artist, Berlin

Sarah Sze Artist, New York Moderated by Hans Ulrich Obrist Artistic Director,

Serpentine Galleries, London

This series brings together artists Katharina Grosse and Sarah Sze, speaking about their own and each other’s work, and how Grosse’s work inspired and informed Sze. This conversation investigates the use of gesture and celestial scale to push towards potentially new ways of thinking.

1pm to 2pm

Conversations on Messeplatz

On Wastelands and Mineral Rights

Anne Minton Journalist, and Reader in Architecture at UEL, London Manuel Herz Architect, Basel Emily Scott Assistant Professor, History of Art and Architecture and Environmental Studies, University of Oregon, Portland/Zurich

Moderated by Lara Almarcegui ‘Basilea’ Artist, Rotterdam

What happens to an extraction site once it is no longer of

use? Who is responsible for its development and its return to the community? The panelists reflect upon the decision- making and journey behind this transformation.

2pm to 3pm

Artist Talk

The Alberto Burri Case Bruno Corà President, Fondazione Palazzo Albizzini Collezione Burri,

Monte Santa Maria Tiberina, Italy Luca Massimo Barbero Director of the Institute of Art History, Giorgio Cini Foundation, Venice Philip Rylands Emeritus Director, Peggy Guggenheim Collection Venice, Venice

Moderated by Dr. Thomas Marks Editor, Apollo Magazine, London

Key figures specializing in the work and life of Alberto Burri (1915–1995), come together to speak on his emotive and groundbreaking work, discussing views from intimate firsthand accounts as well as academic perspectives on his existentialist motivations and radical methods.

3pm to 4pm Art World Talk Activating Public Spaces

Isabel Lewis ‘Basilea’ Artist, Dancer, Electronic Music Producer, Berlin Enrique Fontanilles Artist, Basel/Mulhouse/Cazalla de la Sierra, former professor at HEAD, Geneva Senam Okudzeto Artist, Writer, and Lecturer, Basel/London/New York/Accra

Moderated by Elvira Dyangani Ose Senior Curator, Creative Time, and Lecturer in Visual Cultures, Goldsmiths, University of London, London

Three artists address the ways in which their lives and practices create awareness of the active role that we, as citizens, have to intervene within and alter any given urban environment.

4pm to 5pm

Art World Talk

Global or Local – For whom? Fernanda Brenner Artistic Director, Pivô, São Paulo

Mari Spirito Founding Director, Protocinema, Istanbul/New York Dana Whabira Founder, Njelele Art Station, Harare, Zimbabwe

Moderated by Alessio Antoniolli Director, Gasworks and Triangle Network, London

Three leaders of art spaces discuss their missions: local versus globalized focus of art spaces. Institutions often look to serve the needs of their local audience while also participating in an international dialogue. Is it more important for art spaces to put their resources behind local art community needs, or is the international discourse more valuable? Is it possible to do both well?

5pm to 6pm

Collector Talk

Starting a Collection Tom Kümmeke Emerging Art Collector, Zurich

Uli Sigg Patron and Leading Collector of Chinese Contemporary Art, Mauensee, Switzerland

Moderated by Amy Binding Editor in Chief, Independent Collectors, Berlin During a frank conversation, emerging and established

collectors share their firsthand experiences with artists, gallerists, curators, and other collectors. They discuss different ways collections get started, how to navigate various stages of collection growth, and what they find rewarding in supporting artists.