Basel counts with its 40 museums as the art capital of Switzerland – no other Swiss city has such a concentration of interesting places to visit. Museum buildings by acclaimed architects have endowed the beautifully preserved old city with exciting contrast.
Basel is by far the art and architecture capital of Switzerland. Its 40 museums, covering an area of almost 37 km2, can be easily reached on foot, mostly by strolling through romantic lanes and alleys in the Old Town. Art ranks high on Basel’s list of priorities. It is just as much a part of the city as the Rhine is.
Video - a quick tour of Basel Museums
It’s no wonder that a stroll through Basel often takes you past one of the many art objects that so characterise the city’s image. Click here for a link to the official website for every museum in Basel; the choice and range of art and culture an art lover will experience in this city is possibly unparalled.
The wealth of Basel’s cultural heritage is manifested in every corner of the city. Among the renowned museums is the finest and oldest art collection, housed in the Kunstmuseum Basel, as well as “Schaulager” – a new space for modern art – which was opened in 2003 and built by local architects Herzog & de Meuron.
Situated directly on the Rhine, the Museum Tinguely, built after plans by the Ticinese architect Mario Botta, houses the greatest collection of works by Jean Tinguely (1925–1991), one of the most innovative and important Swiss artists of the 20th century.
The permanent exhibition presents a survey of his oeuvre spanning four decades. Special exhibitions show a wide range of artists and subjects including Marcel Duchamp and Kurt Schwitters who influenced Tinguely significantly, companions such as Arman, Niki de Saint Phalle, Yves Klein as well as current art trends along Tinguely’s ideas.
Furthermore, the Fondation Beyeler, which is well worth a visit, is famous far beyond the limits of Basel – not only for the highly acclaimed special exhibitions, but also for the impressive building designed by architect Renzo Piano. Moreover, the “Messeturm” as at the moment the highest building of Basel with a height of 105 meters was designed by Morger & Degelo.
Basel is both proud and very aware of its history, but at the same time is receptive to everything new. This aspect is exemplified by the many modern structures designed by world-famous architects. They complete the picture of an open and tolerant metropolis and serve as a contrast to the venerable buildings in the historic Old Town. In matters of architecture, Basel has a good deal to offer.
What is more, in the region of Basel are buildings and structures from several international architects who have been awarded with the Pritzker price (worldwide most renowned price for architecture), amongst other Richard Meier, Renzo Piano, Frank O. Ghery and Zaha Hadid.
Scheduled are more masterpieces of architecture in the near future to make modern architecture a fascinating aspect of our town, for instance with the project of new buildings for the pharmaceutical company Roche by Herzog & de Meuron.
Here is a map for all the museums : http://www.museenbasel.ch/en/mapmuseenbasel.php
Ten More Reasons To Visit Basel In 2015
More and more people around the world are discovering the delights Basel has to offer during all four seasons of the year – from traditional events, sporting occasions to seasonal celebrations.
The people of Basel describe their famous carnival as the “three most wonderful days in the year”. Following preparations that stretch all year long, Morgenstreich marks the beginning of Fasnacht as the city is suddenly plunged into darkness at 4.00 am in the morning of the Monday after Ash Wednesday. The festivities come to an end 72 hours later.
BASELWORLD is one of leading events for the watch and jewellery industry. This unique fair lends the city an exclusive air. Every year in spring time, over 101,700 retailers and wholesalers from all over the world make the journey to Basel to visit this presentation of the latest trends and creations offered by the watch and jewellery industry.
ART | BASEL
Art Basel offers art from the 20th and 21st centuries, and is undisputedly considered the most important world fair of the international art market. Over 300 carefully selected exhibitors from the world's most important galleries turn the fairground into the most important museum on time. Artists, art collectors and many prominent figures from the cultural scene meet on these days in Basel. Click here for the event calendar.
A highpoint of the regions summer of culture is the Stimmen Festival (Voice Festival) at various event venues in the region. Different ensembles, workshops and international starts dedicate themselves to the most versatile of all instruments, the human voice. The festival is graced by starts, up-and-coming talents and big names from the world of music and pop.
Based on the world-famous Edinburgh Tattoo, the Basel Tattoo takes place during the summer against the historic backdrop of the Basel Barracks. The sounds of bagpipes, brass music and folklore dancing enchant the crowd. The arena, which is specially constructed for this open-air event, offers space for a total of around 7,500 spectators.
Basel Autumn Fair
Basel’s annual autumn fair has been a magnet for both young and old for over 500 years. Stretching over seven locations around town, it has something for everyone – with numerous rides, stalls selling a range of tasty snacks such as roasted almonds and grilled sausages, and colourful fairgrounds such as the one on Petersplatz.
Swiss Indoors is the world's third-largest indoor tournament, the highlight of the Swiss tennis year, many of the greatest tennis artists can be seen in action at close range. More than 70,000 spectators are set to follow the games live at the St. Jakobshalle, creating a centre-court atmosphere that is unique to Basel.
Switzerland’s largest sporting event and one of the most important indoor tournaments in the world, the Swiss Indoors traditionally takes place in Basel and always forms part of the end-of-season run-up to the World Finals. The magnificent St. Jakobshalle is the setting for this annual gathering of the elite of the tennis world.
Baloise Session Basel
The festival has attracted major names on the international music scene since 1986, and takes place on a small scale with an intimate club table atmosphere. A must for music fans with high expectations! Some of the most famous artists from the genres of pop, soul, rock, Latin, blues, singer-songwriter, R&B and contemporary jazz perform.
Basel's boutique music festival is 30 this year. Opening Night on 23 October 2015 will ring in the 30th anniversary festival editon. From then until 12 November, the festival will be celebrating 30 years with top quality acts and promising newcomers. This year's line-up will be announced on 26 August.
Incognito Perform LIVE - A Real Musical Treat
Christmas City & Christmas Market
In the heart of the city centre, nestled in the seasonally decorated historic Old Town, is the attractive and atmospheric Christmas market. At around 140 brightly lit stalls and wooden houses, dealers and handicraft workers from across Switzerland and the region offer their wares or demonstrate their skills.
The Basel Christmas market at Barfüsserplatz and Münsterplatz is considered to be one of the prettiest and largest in Switzerland.
During the run-up to Christmas, many events and spectacular special exhibitions in the city's museums further enrich its cultural scene.
Fairs & Events in Basel, this coming week
There are some fantastic satellite fairs around Basel over the next week, we've listed them here for you with links to further information on the events. Enjoy!
Design Miami Halle 1 Süd, Messe Basel | 15. – 21.06.2015
I Never Read – Art Book Fair Basel Kaserne Basel | 17. – 20.06.2015
Liste Werkraum Warteck | 16. – 21.06.2015
Photo Basel St. Johanns-Vorstadt 21 | 17. – 20.06.2015
Photography – Constructing an African Image Vitra Design Museum (D) | 15. – 19.06.2015
Rhy Art Fair Saalbau Rhypark | 17. – 21.06.2015
Scope Uferstrasse 40 | 16. – 21.06.2015
Selection Art Fair Riehentorstrasse 33 | 18. – 22.06.2015
Swiss Art Awards Halle 4.1, Messe Basel | 16. – 21.06.2015
Swiss Design Awards Halle 4, Messe Basel | 17. – 21.06.2015
The Solo Project St. Jakobshalle Basel | 17. – 21.06.2015
Volta Markthalle Basel | 15. – 20.06.2015
ART | BASEL 16. - 21.06.2015