Art Basel is in the City, Region and Nature

Art Basel (10 – 16 June) presents art from the 20th and 21st centuries and is the leading world fair for the international art market. More than 250 galleries and 4,000 artists from all over the globe make Basel a museum of modern and contemporary art. The city and surrounding area already have several museums in this field.

Impressions of Art Basel

Art Basel is also in Paris in October and on two other continents: in Hong Kong in March and in Florida (now present with a show in Basel).

Impressions of DesignMiami. Basel

Several side exhibitions will be held this week in Basel and the surrounding region. The Art Parcours in the city centre is a special presentation of installations, sculptures, interventions, and performances in public spaces and historical sites in the city.

Art Basel is a transformative experience, transcending its role as a mere meeting place for artists, gallery owners, and art dealers. It’s not just about bringing art to a wider audience; it is art in itself-creative, engaging. Art Basel brings nature into the city, and the Basel Social Club connects at the same time visitors with nature!

Chaplin’s World on the shores of Lake Leman

6 June 1944 (D-Day) was not only a day of deliverance for citizens of occupied countries in Western Europe. It was also a moment of hope for actor and film director Charly Chaplin (1889-1977). Although he was only four days older than the German dictator, he outlived him by over 32 years.

They never met but knew each other rather well. The dictator was fond of (American) films from the interwar period (the period between 1918 and 1939), and Chaplin was the most famous artist of the time.

The closing speech in the Great Dictator

It is unknown whether the dictator also saw the film The Great Dictator (1940). This film was not shown in territories occupied or controlled by The German Reich, but it premiered in the United Kingdom, Canada, and the United States in 1940.

Even after 1940, Chaplin was committed to liberating Europe from this dictatorship. He lived and worked in America from 1912 and, after 22 June 1941 (the German attack on the Soviet Union, the Nazis’ former ally), committed himself to supporting the Soviet-war effort.

In his films, he mostly engaged with and associated with ‘outcasts’ and was critical of consumer society and unbridled capitalism. However, his support for the Soviet Union was not support for communism but was directed against Germany. Winston Churchill also made that choice (‘If Hitler invaded hell (Soviet Union), I would make at least a favourable reference to the devil in the House of Commons’).

For Chaplin, however, the Cold War after 1945 meant accountability for his political views. McCarthyism, caused by global communist aggression, left no room for nuance in America after 1948, and Chaplin left the country in 1952.

He settled with his wife Oona O’Neill (1925-1991) and his (growing) brood of children at the Mansion de Ban (Manoir de Ban) in Corsier-sur-Vevey (canton of Waadt) on Lake Geneva.

Imperial, royal, and aristocratic families, artists, performers, scientists, political exiles, and other celebrities have settled in Switzerland for centuries. Switzerland’s attractiveness lies not only in its democracy, (intellectual) tolerance, culture, nature, landscape, political, monetary, and fiscal system.

Chaplin and many others before and after him particularly appreciated and valued discretion, respect for and with each other, behaviour, and the functioning of society, or, more precisely, the quality of life.

Chaplin enjoyed his park and Lake Geneva and the hospitality he experienced. For example, he regularly lunched in nearby Saint-Saphorin and other villages. Although he hardly spoke French, his meetings with the locals were always cordial.

Chaplin has always been fascinated by the circus and devoted several films to it. Since 1952, he has been present as a guest of honour at Circus Knie performances.

Today, the Mansion is open to the public. It mainly shows Chaplin’s private life from 1952 to 1977.

The nearby museum gives a multifaceted and varied picture of his life and development as an individual, artist, and humanist, from his early years in England to his heyday in America to his last projects and years in Switzerland.

(Source and further information: Chaplin’s World)

Impressions of the Manoir de Ban and the Parc


Impressions of the museum

The introductory movie makes place for the house and street of Chaplin’s youth in  London and the artistic life of Chaplin

Replica from ‘City Lights’ (1931)

Studio and ‘Modern Times’ (1936) in the background

Opening of the Centre Albert Anker in Ins

The Centre Albert Anker in Ins (Canton Bern) reopened to the public on 7 June after 12 years of renovation.

The complex explores the artistic, political, and social life of Swiss artist Albert Anker (1831-1910) in the authentic setting of his home, studio, and extension with an art pavilion.

The Centre Albert Anker includes the authentic atelier, his residence and the newly built art pavilion in the garden.

The family has not touched the atelier for seven generations, and its preserved condition makes it unique in Switzerland. The residence gives an insight into the daily life of the Anker family.

The permanent exhibition shows the artist’s living and working environment in 15 themes. The man, politician and artist is shown both in his native village of Ins and in the national and international context of the 19th and early 20th centuries.

The reception hall of the new pavilion. Photo: ©Alexander Jaquemet

The first temporary exhibition in the pavilion is dedicated to Anker’s travels to southern Europe between 1861 and 1891. Entitled ‘Light of the South’, it will include more than 20 little-known small-format travel paintings in impressionist style and small oil paintings.

The Kunstmuseum Bern is currently hosting the exhibition ‘Albert Anker—Reading Girls’ (until 21.7.2024).

(Source and further information: Centre Albert Anker)