• The UBS Art Collection will present a commissioned installation, painted on-site by Costa Rican artist Federico Herrero, in the UBS Lounge
  • The UBS Art Studio (Hall 1), will be dedicated to #TOGETHERBAND in support of the 17 UN Global Goals; an initiative endorsed by Federico Herrero who will present work at the booth
  • Survey of Swiss high-net-worth collectors, conducted by Art Economics and UBS, shows high engagement and spending by female collectors

Art fairs play a pivotal role in the art market with nearly half of all global dealer sales occurring at fairs. Many of our clients devote a significant part of their wealth to building up collections, driven by a passion for art. The Art Basel show offers the perfect environment for our global community of collectors to convene.

Martin Blessing, Co-President, Global Wealth Management, UBS

UBS celebrates its 26th year of support as Global Lead Partner for Art Basel in Basel (13 – 16 June 2019), presenting new works by Costa Rican artist Federico Herrero. Building on eight years of collecting Herrero’s work for the UBS Art Collection, this collaboration is a celebration of UBS’s relationship with the artist. Known for his temporary site-specific interventions, Herrero will produce an 11-meter, abstract wall painting on-site in the UBS Lounge. The presentation will also feature a suite of five of Herrero’s new paintings, creating a monumental immersive experience for visitors.

Herrero will also present work in the UBS Art Studio, UBS's public booth in Hall 1 at Art Basel, which will be dedicated to #TOGETHERBAND in support of the 17 UN Global Goals. Initiated by sustainable accessories brand BOTTLETOP, the campaign aims to engage hundreds of thousands of people across the world to raise awareness for the goals, in partnership with the United Nations Foundation, World Wildlife Fund, Project Everyone, Eco Age and Global Citizen. At the heart of the #TOGETHERBAND campaign are 17 sustainably and ethically produced friendship bands in the colors of the 17 goals made from up-cycled ocean plastic and Humanium, re-cycled steel created from seized illegal firearms. The production of the bands are generating skills and livelihoods for women working as artisans in Nepal. The bands will be available to purchase as part of the presentation on the booth and 100% of the proceeds from each #TOGETHERBAND are used to spread the word about the Global Goals and fund life-changing projects.

Mary Rozell, Global Head of the UBS Art Collection, says: “The UBS Art Collection values close collaboration with artists and the relationship with Federico Herrero exemplifies this. We have been collecting works by Federico since 2011 and now have four works in our collection, one of which hangs in our recently renovated global headquarters in Zurich alongside some of the most important works from the UBS Art Collection.


Federico Herrero says: “My site-specific interventions around the world have really shown me the transformative impact art can have on communities, as it brings people together and can completely alter the environment. I’m passionate about how art can be used as an educational tool, by responding to the surrounding environment and seeking audiences to develop a deeper understanding of the world and how things connect, leading to a more sustainable future. For my work at the UBS Lounge at Art Basel, I created a group of paintings that will be in dialogue with a site specific mural. For me it's really about this dialogue in the space, of how painting in itself is a type of Alphabet and an open structure where the notion of the intelligence of the senses can be activated creating engagement in time and space.”

Herrero’s works have featured in the Guggenheim UBS MAP Global Art Initiative presentations, and his painting Sin Titulo V.V.B. (2010),now hangs alongside 200 highlights from the UBS Art Collection’s 30,000 artworks in the recently re-furbished global headquarters in Zurich. The new display based on the theme Heritage Meets Contemporary  references the history of the firm. It features Agenda (2018) by John Armleder, a monumental, site-specific commission for the entrance of the building, as well as the landscape-inspired paintings Lake Thun with the Stockhorn Mountain Range in Winter (1912) by Ferdinand Holder and Untitled (2017) by Etel Adnan; stills of the psychedelic film Pepperminta (2009) by Pipilotti Rist and the abstract works Pure Freude (2000) by Imi Knoebel.

For Art Basel 2019, Art Economics and UBS present results from a survey of Swiss high-net-worth collectors which builds on HNW surveys conducted for The Art Basel and UBS Global Art Market Report. Key findings include evidence of high engagement and significant spending by female collectors in the Swiss market, and greater female artist representation in Swiss collections compared to other markets: Germany, Japan and Singapore. There was more expenditure at higher price points ($1m + level) compared to other markets, particularly by millennials and women. Gen X and millennials were also the most active collectors across all segments. The Swiss HNW collectors surveyed had a more international collecting focus, with 47% of the works in their collections by local artists compared to 53% by artists from abroad (compared to 45% in the other 5 markets). Millennial collectors had the highest share of foreign artists' works in their collections at 60%. The most popular source for advice on Swiss collection management was from dealers and gallerists.

UBS supports artists and galleries and actively lends works to major art museums and cultural institutions for exhibitions. UBS has also recently launched its own public gallery at its New York headquarters called the UBS Art Gallery at 1285 Avenue of the Americas. The inaugural exhibition, A History and a Moment: Works from the UBS Art Collection, offers insights into the history and evolution of the Collection since the 1960s, featuring works by established artists such as Ellsworth Kelly and Cindy Sherman alongside recent acquisitions by Dinh Q. Lê and Xaviera Simmons.

About Federico Herrero

Federico Herrero’s intensely visual language is rooted in his observations of everyday life in Costa Rica’s ever evolving urban landscape, especially the way nature and culture collide. In his abstract paintings on canvas, immersive installations, and public works, brightly hued organic shapes jostle against each other as they inhabit and negotiate space. Herrero also expresses space through color, with his geometric compositions a study of liminal spaces—gaps between public and private, canvas and wall, figure and background, work and viewer. Federico Herrero (b. 1978, San Jose, Costa Rica) has exhibited widely internationally, with solo exhibitions and public installations in São Paulo, Brazil; San Francisco, CA; Dusseldorf, Germany; Kanazawa, Japan; Tokyo, Japan; Mexico City, Mexico; Freiburg, Germany; and London, UK. Current museum commissions include Open Envelope at the Witte de With, Rotterdam, Netherlands and Alphabet, a site-specific installation for the atrium of the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, IL. Herrero was the recipient of the Young Artist’s Prize at the 49th Venice Biennale (2001) and his work is in the permanent collection of numerous institutions including the Tate Modern, London, UK; Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid, Spain; and the Guggenheim Museum, New York, NY. Herrero is also the founder of Despacio, a contemporary art space in his native San Jose, which is an important force in the continued development of Central America’s artistic voice. He lives and works in San Jose, Costa Rica.


#TOGETHERBAND is a global campaign created by sustainable fashion brand BOTTLETOP, Founding Partner UBS, the UN Foundation and others to create mass global awareness and support action towards the 17 UN Global Goals, in an innovative and collaborative way. At the center of the program are 17 bands, each one sustainably made and sourced, and each corresponding to a Global Goal. All bands can be purchased at www.togetherband.org. It is a non-profit initiative and all net profits generated will be dedicated to projects aligned with the Goals, with guidance provided by the UBS Optimus Foundation. The initiative is supported by celebrity ambassadors, sustainability experts and other influencers to reach a mass, public audience.

About the UBS Art Collection

UBS has been an active contemporary art collector since the 1960s, a practice driven by the company’s long-held belief that the art of today provides inspiration and challenge while encouraging the innovative thinking that has shaped UBS’s corporate culture over the last half-century. Today the UBS Art Collection is considered one of the largest and most important corporate collections of contemporary art in the world. It is comprised of various individual art collections with unique attributes that have been integrated over time through a series of mergers and acquisitions – notably Union Bank of Switzerland, Swiss Bank Corporation and PaineWebber Inc. The vast majority of these works are displayed in more than 700 UBS offices around the world, serving as an inspiration for employees and a platform for dialogue with clients and the public. UBS takes a dynamic approach to the Collection, continuing to evolve and grow through acquisitions of works from around the world in accordance with the geographical reach of its business. UBS also supports artists and galleries and actively lends works to major art museums and cultural institutions for public exhibitions. In 2019, UBS launched the UBS Art Gallery at its New York Headquarters with permanent artworks from the collection and the exhibition ‘A History and a Moment’.  

About UBS and Contemporary Art

UBS has a long history of supporting contemporary art and artists. The firm has one of the world’s largest and most important corporate art collections and seeks to advance the international conversation about the art market through its global lead partnership with Art Basel and as co-publisher of the ‘Art Basel and UBS Global Art Market Report'. UBS also has partnerships with fine art institutions including the Fondation Beyeler in Switzerland, the Garage Museum of Contemporary Art in Russia, the Nouveau Musée National de Monaco, the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art in Denmark, the Deichtorhallen in Germany, the Museo del Palacio de Bellas Artes in Mexico and the Art Gallery of New South Wales in Australia. UBS provides its clients with insight into the art market, collecting and legacy planning through its Art Collectors Circle and the UBS Art Competence Center. The UBS Arts Forum convenes and connects exceptional people in the art world, providing thought leadership at the cutting edge of contemporary art. For more information about UBS’s commitment to contemporary art, visit ubs.com/art.

UBS and Art Basel

The relationship between UBS and Art Basel began in 1994 when the Swiss financial services firm began serving as lead partner for the original edition of the show in Basel. In 1999, the partnership was extended to include Art Basel’s Unlimited exhibition platform – which enables artists to realize highly original and ambitious projects – and, in 2002, the inaugural edition of Art Basel in Miami Beach. In 2014, UBS became involved with Art Basel in Hong Kong, officially assuming its current role as global Lead Partner of Art Basel for all three of its acclaimed international shows. In June 2016, it was announced that Art Basel and UBS would partner to commission a comprehensive, new annual art-market report by renowned cultural economist Dr. Clare McAndrew. The Art Basel and UBS Global Art Market Report was issued in March 2017 during Art Basel in Hong Kong. In March 2018 and March 2019, UBS and Art Basel co-published the second and third Art Basel and UBS Global Art Market Reports by Clare McAndrew. UBS has furthered its support of Art Basel by becoming Global Lead Partner of Art Basel Cities. Find more details at ubs.com/art.

About Art Basel

Founded in 1970 by gallerists from Basel, Art Basel today stages the world's premier art shows for Modern and contemporary art, sited in Basel, Miami Beach and Hong Kong. Defined by its host city and region, each show is unique, which is reflected in its participating galleries, artworks presented, and the content of parallel programming produced in collaboration with local institutions for each edition. Art Basel’s engagement has expanded beyond art fairs through a number of new initiatives such as Art Basel Cities, working with partner cities on bespoke cultural programs. For further information, please visit artbasel.com.


UBS Group AG

Notes to Editors  

Join the conversation

#UBSArtCollection #UBSart #ArtTransforms #ArtMarket #TOGETHERBAND

Media contact

Tamsin Selby
+41-79-433 66 06


Sutton PR
Sara Kietzmann
+44 (0) 20 7759 1862