Week in Review: Art Basel From Every Angle, the Nail Art Explosion, and Our "Mad Man" Prophecies

Week in Review: Art Basel From Every Angle, the Nail Art Explosion, and Our "Mad Man" Prophecies
Victoria Miro's booth at Art 43 Basel
(Courtesy Art Basel)

Our most-talked-about stories in Art, Design & Fashion, and Performing Arts, June 11-15, 2012:


— At Art Basel 2012, we picked our 10 favorite booths, planned an itinerary of 10 must-attend events, marveled at major galleries' masterpiece-filled stands, reported serious sales during the two-day VIP preview — including Pace Gallery's $25-million Gerhard Richter — checked out the large-scale sculptures in the fair's Art Unlimited section, and finally found some time to sneak out to join Dasha Zhukova, Tracey Emin, and more at a lavish dinner party honoring Rem Koolhaas, before checking in with both the Design Miami/ design fair and Volta.

— Shane Ferro crunched the numbers and discovered that while prices for trophy pieces by Munch, Rothko, and company have soard, the art market's mid-level is stagnating and may be on the brink of collapse.

— Swiss collector Uli Sigg donated more than 1,400 works of iconic contemporary Chinese art to Hong Kong's under-construction M+ museum in the West Kowloon Cultural District.

— The Metropolitan Museum invited new media artists to scan and remix works from their collection, and they produced new takes on canonical art history with the Makerbot 3D printer.

— Rising art star and YouTube art critic Hennessy Youngman discussed the similarities between the art world and hip-hop, and revealed an embarrassing painting he recently purchased.


— Janelle Zara reported on Design Miami/Basel's W Hotel-sponsored Designers of the Future prize, which went this week to three rising stars.

— Kelly Chan wrote that steel giant ArcelorMittal's broke its promise to concentration camp survivors in a small town in Bosnia while assembling Anish Kapoor's $35-million tower for the London Olympics.

Ann Binlot investigated the sudden ubiquity of elaborate nail art, which has been worn by everyone from superstars like Lady Gaga and Katy Perry to attendees at the super-indie Bushwick Open Studios.

HBO added a 350-pound, $30,000 replica of the spiky Iron Throne from its hit series "Game of Thrones" to its online store.

Salavatore Ferragamo became the first designer ever to have a fashion show in the gilded halls of the Louvre.


— J. Hoberman enjoyed the comic embarrassment of sibling love triangle comedy "Your Sister's Sister," but lost interest when things turned serious.

— With production underway on yet another "Moby Dick" screen adaptation and a film based on Thomas Philbrick’s National Book Award-winning “In the Heart of the Sea: The Tragedy of the Whaleship Essex,” Graham Fuller predicted a string of whaling-themed blockbusters.

— We gloated a little when most of our predictions about Sunday's "Mad Men" season finale turned out to be extremely accurate.

— Bryan Hood noted that Lindsay Lohan, who is set to co-star with pornstar James Deen in "The Canyons," a new indie movie directed by Paul Schrader and written by Bret Easton Ellis, is in many ways already a character from an Ellis novel.

— While in Berlin, J. Hoberman marveled at artist Rabih Mroué's haunting film installation based on cell phone video of the Syrian uprising, "Double Shooting."