Fakewhale Presents REFLECTIONS: A WUF Basel Collective Press Showcase

As Basel gears up for the WUF press-only event scheduled for June 11-12 at Bar Rouge, Messepl. 10, anticipation builds for its signature press showcases, designed to connect leading media with the finest in contemporary creative culture.

Fakewhale, WUF’s curatorial partner for this Basel edition, not only presents a series of press solo showcases featuring leading voices in the digital art scene [read full coverage] but also “REFLECTIONS”—a collective press showcase that unites influential contemporary artists. This showcase broadens the conversation initiated by the solo press showcases, presenting a diverse array of artists who bridge digital technology with traditional art forms, underscoring the dynamic evolution of contemporary art in the digital age.

“REFLECTIONS” investigates the profound relationship between art and its digital manifestations. Historically, from the advent of photography in the 19th century, which began to shift the artistic landscape by introducing new modes of representation, to the present, where digital forms offer not just replication but a new realm of interaction, the image has been central to evolving artistic practices. The role of the image not merely as a representation but as an autonomous entity that communicates and interacts, reshaping our engagement with art.

The collective press showcase brings together a diverse group of contemporary artists, including Léo Fourdrinier, Nicolas Lamas, Mit Borras, Christian Holze, Huber Huber, Manor Grünewald, Julien Quentel, Erris Huigens, Lolo y Sosaku, Hanna Antonsson Hermes, Léa de Cacqueray, Alice Gong Xiaowen, and Emmanuel Van der Auwera. These artists, through their work primarily rooted in the themes of sculpture and installation, explore the role of the image in contemporary art, posing fundamental questions about its capacities for communication and interaction in an era dominated by digital media.

Hanna Antonsson, Auto wing IX, Taxidermy crow wings, car tire, seat belt, servo motors, arduino, metal clamps, 2023

The press showcase explores how digitalization has reshaped our aesthetic perspectives, illuminating the influence of artwork images circulated through magazines and social platforms on contemporary artistic experiences. Rather than displaying physical pieces, it presents a curated photographic selection of each piece. This method offers a distinct, personal perspective through a primarily documentary lens. By opting for these images over tangible artworks, the display emphasizes a reimagining of art as a deeply subjective and intimate vision, mediated through each artist’s photographic interpretation.

Once confined to catalogs and monographs, these images now engage with audiences directly and pervasively through digital means, prompting us to reconsider the very essence of art in contemporary culture. Pioneers like John Baldessari and Bruce Nauman, and later Thomas Demand and Richard Prince, have all explored this shifting boundary through photography and video, questioning the authenticity and ownership of images.

Displayed on LCD screens strategically positioned throughout an expansive hall with panoramic views of the historic Messeturm Basel, the artworks invite reconsideration of the interplay between the digital and the physical. This minimalist setup not only enhances the visual experience but also emphasizes how digital representations can transform and be appreciated anew.

Emmanuel Van der Auwera, VideoSculpture XXV (Archons), 2022

Organized into distinct thematic sections, the “REFLECTIONS” press showcase spans an array of artistic forms, from flat, two-dimensional displays to digitized representations of immersive installations and intricate sculptures. In this context, the focus shifts to the documentary image and its ability to create new narrative contexts, opening up new worlds. Through its two-dimensional limitation, the image rediscovers its role as a mediator between the artwork and the audience, revealing its importance in defining the artistic and emotional question for the viewer. This approach highlights how images can transcend their physical limits to build deep and meaningful connections, redefining the way we perceive and interact with the artistic object.

This visual and conceptual exploration sparks a dialogue on how digital representations of art shape our perceptions and potentially transform the very essence of the artworks themselves.

Every year, Basel becomes the focal point for the world’s leading journalists and art enthusiasts, eager to engage with the latest innovations in art, creativity, and technology. This June, WUF (We Understand the Future) is set to elevate this dynamic atmosphere with an exclusive event designed specifically for the press. In the fast-evolving art landscape, WUF stands at the vanguard, spotlighting new voices, pioneering projects, and cutting-edge trends. The philosophy behind “We Understand the Future” being the driving force of the event.

WUF is a collaborative media platform that connects premier media outlets with authentic creative discovery and understanding.

On June 11-12, WUF will host an invite-only event for the press at Bar Rouge, Messepl. 10 Basel, in collaboration with media partners ArtsLife and laLettura of Corriere della Sera. An event that will serve as a premier resource for leading media outlets to access a carefully curated selection of projects, spotlighting top artists, curators, creators, and trends from around the globe.

Discover the full FW coverage on WUF

If you are a journalist or media representative and interested in attending, RSVP at https://rsvp.wuf.art/wuf-basel-2024. Limited invites are available.

Léa de Cacqueray, Illicium I, inox, céramiques, peinture, 2024

Founded in 2021, Fakewhale advocates the digital art market's evolution. Viewing NFT technology as a container for art, and leveraging the expansive scope of digital culture, Fakewhale strives to shape a new ecosystem in which art and technology become the starting point, rather than the final destination.

FW LOG is a curated media platform investigating the junction point between technology and art. It provides in-depth insights through the Fakewhale ecosystem, featuring the latest industry news, comprehensive curation, interviews, show spotlights and trends shaping tomorrow’s art market.

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