photo basel special projects & in situ

photo basel
May 29, 2019 3:17PM

With strong personal and professional ties to the hosting city, photo basel is proud to be able to give back to this wonderful Swiss town. With our special projects and in situ initiatives, we would like to express our gratitude towards the region and local community, offering a photography-centered program that invites an even broader audience (free of charge) throughout the year.

in situ during photo basel 2019

During the fifth anniversary edition of photo basel art fair (June 2019), the home of private collector Dr. Felix Ackermann will turn once again into a heaven for photography aficionados.

This year, the i.collection (1987-2008) assembled by Isabelle Mège and presented by the French gallery Baudoin Lebon (Paris) and La Chapelle de Clairefontaine, 60 prints will be on display in Basel.

The collection of Isabelle Mège consists of 110 photographs taken by 80 photographers, being simultaneously creator, model and collector. Isabelle Mège began with this personal project in 1986, at only 20 years old, after she had encountered the work of Jeanloup Sieff, shown at the Museum of Modern Art at the time. It all started to take shape in her mind thereafter. She documented herself methodically and visited countless exhibitions in her search for the right photographers to carry out her project as she envisioned it.

Isabelle Mège’s approach is one of self-empowerment rather than narcissism, exercising control over her image at every stage. She presents different aspects of herself throughout the years and in each photograph: various settings and poses, but always her utmost intimate self. For almost 20 years, Isabelle Mège has been in contact with photographers, at times rejecting some as inadequate to her project and at other times getting politely declined by them. The resulting collection of images is proof for the necessity to leave a mark and to build a body of work over time in something that we would call today a performance. In front of the camera, er facial features and visage, her body and silhouette are always interpreted differently by the 80 photographers. The relationship that Isabelle Mège built and maintained with each photographer is one of curiosity and fascination, almost idolization in some respect. In her diary, she described it as if it were teenage romantic encounters: “He calls me, I am moved, surprised, ebriated”.

Opening Reception: Thursday, June 6th, from 6 to 8pm @ Heuberg 24 in 4051 Basel (map)

photo basel