The 12th edition of the confusingly titled Design Miami/Basel design fair in Basel, Switzerland, June 14-18, 2011, is shaping up to be a bit bigger than last year, despite the relatively soft design market. A total of 35 dealers have signed on, three more than in 2010, and including four new recruits.
The lineup is impressive, especially considering that the fair's new director -- Marianne Goebl, previously with the Swiss design firm Vitra -- only took over this February. “Design Miami/Basel will again be located in Hall 5 of hte Basel Messe, around the corner from the halls containing Art Unlimited and Art 42 Basel,” explains Goebl. That location means heavy foot traffic from well-heeled contemporary art collectors.
New dealers to be featured in DMB include Galerie Ulrich Fiedler from Berlin, which practically achieved a sellout of Bauhaus period furnishings at TEFAF Maastricht in early March. Other new recruits are Galerie Doria from Paris, which specializes in 1930s furniture and decorative arts; Ornamentum, from upstate New York, with contemporary jewelry; and Matter of Manhattan with contemporary design.
Rejoining the design fair after a hiatus is Tribeca’s Hostler Burrows, formerly known as Antik, which carries Scandinavian design, and the contemporary design dealer Perimeter from Paris. Three galleries have taken full-sized booths after previously merely participating in the fair's "Design On/Site" section: D&A LAB from Brussels, Dilmos from Milan and Karena Schuessler from Berlin.
No shows include 18th-century furniture specialist Didier Aaron, as well as Galerie du Passage, Droog and Magen.
The fair is heavily Eurocentric, naturally enough. Ten participants are from Paris: Galerie Downtown-François Laffanour, Galerie Kreo, Galerie Patrick Seguin, Galerie Perrin, Jousse Entreprise, Anne-Sophie Duval, Galerie Doria, Eric Philippe, Galerie Jacques Lacoste and Galerie Chastel Marechal.
Berlin, Brussels and Milan are represented by two dealers each and one each hails from Cologne, Zurich, Geneva, Rotterdam, Heusden, the Netherlands and Stockholm. London dealers are Carpenters Workshop and David Gill. Asian participants are Contrasts from Shanghai and Gallery Seomi from Seoul.
The U.S. is represented by seven dealers, including Demisch Danant, Hostler Burrows, Johnson Trading Gallery, R 20th Century, Matter, Cristina Grajales and Ornamentum.
HSBC Private Bank is hosting the VIP Lounge, and plans to showcase a newly commissioned piece by Dutch designer Hella Jongerius.
BROOK S. MASON is U.S. correspondent for the Art Newspaper, and also writes for the Financial Times and other publications.