Online Viewing Rooms: ‘Art Basel has paved the way for what’s to come’, says exhibitor

Dear Shaded Viewers,

250,000 visited Art Basel Hong Kong’s digital-only edition

As society adapts to the uncertainties and challenges brought about by Covid-19, the artworld has been exploring innovative ways to keep the art community connected. For Art Basel, this meant bringing forward the launch of its Online Viewing Rooms to support the galleries and artists that had been due to show at Art Basel Hong Kong 2020. In total, 235 exhibitors took part, showing more than 2,000 works. Ranging in price from US$750 to US$3,000,000, these pieces had an aggregate value of approximately US$270 million – ‘almost undoubtedly […] the priciest collection of works ever offered through a single online portal,’ wrote Tim Schneider of artnet News. This inaugural edition was a leap of faith for both Art Basel and its exhibitors, but one that brought galleries, collectors, and artists together during this time of social distancing.

‘[The Online Viewing Rooms project] has been very helpful in bringing the works that we were to show at Art Basel Hong Kong to the attention of a worldwide audience,’ said Fred Scholle, chairman of the Hong Kong-based Galerie du Monde. Art Basel’s digital initiative was particularly appreciated, he added, ‘during this difficult time, when so many people are in self-quarantine and not able to get out to visit galleries.’
Diane Pernet

A LEGENDARY FIGURE IN FASHION and a pioneer of blogging, Diane is a respected journalist, critic, curator and talent-hunter based in Paris. During her prolific career, she designed her own successful brand in New York, costume designer, photographer, and filmmaker.