The Best of Art Basel 2017

From a David Bowie tribute to a Julian Schnabel-Franz West union, here are the standouts at the fair’s 48th edition.

For the art world’s cast of power players, spring is globe-trotting season—particularly this year with the Venice Biennale and Documenta opening within weeks of one another. The culmination of these happenings is Art Basel, which runs through June 18, and its concurrent events that bring work by an estimated 4,000 artists to the Swiss city. We sifted through the fair’s 291 galleries from 35 countries to find this year’s highlights.

Tribute to David Bowie by Elizabeth Peyton, “David” (2017) at Gladstone Gallery.


Wall sculpture in carrara marble by Giuseppe Penone, “Pelle del Monte” (2012) at Marian Goodman Gallery.


Glass and drift wood sculpture by Olafur Eliasson at Tanya Bonakdar Gallery.


Large-scale work on paper by South African artist William Kentridge, “The Execution of Maximilian” (2017) at Marian Goodman Gallery.


Acrylic painting by Julio Le Parc, “La Longue Marche” (1974) at Perrotin and Galeria Nara Roesler.


Pairing of Julian Schnabel “The Day I Missed” (1990) and Franz West “Untitled” (2009) at Almine Reich Gallery.


Sand painting by Jennifer Guidi, “Rarified Matter” (2017) at David Kordansky Gallery.


Installation by Subodh Gupta, “Cooking the World” (2017) presented by Galleria Continua and Hauser & Wirth.


A 300-drawing archive given by Yves Saint Laurent to his former lover and driver Fabrice Thomas, “YSL, Erotique” (1968–72) at Galerie Neu.


Painting by Sigmar Polke, “Untitled” (1976) at Lévy Gorvy Gallery.


David Claerbout’s version of The Jungle Book, “The Pure Necessity” (2016) presented by Sean Kelly Gallery and Esther Schipper.


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