This year’s Art Basel in Basel opened its doors from 14 -17 June to 95,000 visitors. UBS celebrated 25 years as Lead Partner of the show with a dedicated presentation of work by Carlos Cruz-Diez from the UBS Art Collection. Cruz-Diez believes that color evolves, changing in real time and space as you interact with it. One of the 20th century’s key visual thinkers, he has been called a master of color, light and line, and is adept at creating participatory visual experiences.
The presentation in the UBS Lounge featured works from the UBS Art Collection that were part of an architectural intervention by the artist from the 1970s at the former Union Bank of Switzerland building in Zurich. This group of artworks has not been seen together since the building closed in 2011. The UBS Art Collection worked with the studio on the removal and restoration of the works, a number of which were since displayed in UBS flagship buildings in London, Hong Kong and Panama. Some of the works have been recently restored by the studio for display at Art Basel.
Carlos Cruz-Diez said: "The Environment Chromatique of the Union Bank of Switzerland (UBS) headquarters, on which I worked over 4 years, is one of my integrations of art in architecture I have the fondest memories about. Art is a complex structure of communication, expression, discovery and invention. Every work of art, every human production, is important when it modifies a former way of thinking."
The relationship between the UBS Art Collection and Carlos Cruz-Diez exemplifies the Collection's approach of close collaboration with living artists over many years. Ambitious site-specific artworks, created in collaboration with a diverse group of international artists, is one of the defining legacies of the collection.