First Major Publication About UBS’s Renowned Art Collection In Nearly A Decade – UBS Art Collection: To Art Its Freedom, Published By Hatje Cantz – Debuts At Art Basel In Miami Beach
Accompanying Display In UBS Lounge Will Showcase Seminal Works Featured In The New Ubs Publication Including Those By Artists Cy Twombly, Alex Katz, Ed Ruscha, Tracey Emin, Sarah Morris And Doug Aitken
UBS will celebrate the opening of Art Basel Miami Beach 2016 by releasing its first major print publication on the UBS Art Collection in nearly a decade. UBS Art Collection: To Art its Freedom is a 274-page, deluxe hardback overview of the UBS Art Collection that includes a text on the history of the collection written by Mary Rozell, Global Head UBS Art Collection, as well as an essay by noted scholar Dieter Buchhart. The volume features more than 200 color illustrations of works by acknowledged masters such as Cy Twombly, Alighiero Boetti, Mary Heilmann, Ed Ruscha and Christopher Wool alongside a number of the collection’s recent acquisitions and works by emerging artists.
This publication, which will be launched at Art Basel Miami Beach 2016, provides the inspiration for the selection of artworks on view within the UBS lounge. UBS Art Collection: To Art its Freedom will feature more than 200 color illustrations and includes the text: “UBS Art Collection: A History and a Moment” written by Mary Rozell, Global Head UBS Art Collection, which presents a history of the Collection, as well as a view to its future. The central essay by noted art historian and curator Dieter Buchhart entitled “To Art its Freedom: A Collection as Emblem of Post-postmodern Polyphony” which contextualizes the Collection within the framework of art history and makes connections among the various featured works. The title of the publication is a quotation from the famous words above the entrance to the Secession Building in Vienna, “To Every Age its Art, to Art its Freedom,” which, according to Buchhart, reflects the spirit of the UBS Art Collection – one that endures and remains relevant, independent of changing circumstances or frameworks.
UBS And Contemporary Art
UBS’s long and substantial record of patronage in contemporary art enables clients and audiences to participate in the international conversation about art and the global art world through the firm’s global art platform. In addition to the UBS Art Collection, considered one of the world’s largest and most important corporate collections of contemporary art, UBS has an extensive roster of contemporary art programs that include the firm’s long-term support for the premier international Art Basel shows in Basel, Miami Beach and Hong Kong, for which UBS serves as global Lead Partner; the Guggenheim UBS MAP Global Art Initiative with the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum; and a global exhibition tour of WOMEN: New Portraits, an exhibition of newly commissioned photographs by renowned photographer Annie Leibovitz. These activities are complemented by a number of regional partnerships with fine art institutions including the Fondation Beyeler in Switzerland, Galleria d’Arte Moderna in Milan, the Nouveau Musée National de Monaco, the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art in Denmark, the Deichtorhallen in Hamburg and the Art Gallery of New South Wales in Sydney, Australia. UBS also provides its clients with insight into the contemporary art world through the free art news app UBS Planet Art, collaborations with the Swiss Institute, and the online resource Artsy, as well as through the UBS Arts Forum. (For more information about UBS’s commitment to contemporary art, visit www.ubs.com/art.)
Today the UBS Art Collection is considered one of the largest and most important corporate collections of contemporary art in the world. Comprised of various individual art collections with unique attributes that have been integrated over time through a series of mergers and acquisitions – notably between Union Bank of Switzerland, Swiss Bank Corporation and PaineWebber Inc. – the UBS Art Collection currently includes more than 30,000 paintings, works on paper, photography, sculpture, video and installations by artists from 73 countries. The vast majority of these works are displayed in more than 800 UBS offices around the world, serving as an inspiration for employees and a platform for dialogue with clients and the public.
In addition to its well-known artworks, the UBS Art Collection also includes a notable group of 274 photographs dating from the 1850s to 1999 on the theme of “Land Use in America” that was assembled by photographer, curator and critic John Szarkowski, former director of photography at the Museum of Modern Art. Also on view, in the UBS lounge are five works that have not been on public display before, which were created by some of the most celebrated names of modern photography: Robert Adams, Harry Callahan, William Eggleston, Eadweard Muybridge and Robert Weston.
UBS takes a dynamic approach to the collection, continuing to grow and evolve its holdings, acquiring works from around the world in accordance with the geographical reach of its business. UBS also actively supports artists and galleries and actively lends works to major art museums and cultural institutions for public exhibitions.
As further evidence of their commitment, UBS marks almost a quarter of a century of partnering with Art Basel this year, supporting the organization on a global level and across all three shows in Basel, Miami Beach and Hong Kong.
“Our long-term partnership with Art Basel is at the core of our broad involvement with contemporary art, as art collectors and art partners,” stated John Mathews, Group Managing Director, Head of Private Wealth Management and Ultra High Net Worth, UBS Wealth Management Americas. “We are delighted to release this extraordinary publication about the UBS Art Collection, which visually captures our more than 60-year collecting history, for our clients and guests in Miami Beach and we look forward to presenting many of the works in our lounge for visitors to see firsthand.”
“UBS Art Collection: To Art its Freedom is the result of a dynamic exchange of some of the most intriguing and influential artists and ideas from the 1960s to the present,” said Mary Rozell, Global Head UBS Art Collection. “The selection includes works that offer insights into the history and evolution of the UBS Art Collection along with new acquisitions that reflect the current moment in contemporary art practice.”
UBS and Art Basel
The relationship between UBS and Art Basel began in 1994 when the Swiss financial services firm began serving as lead sponsor 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 Miami Beach. In 2014, UBS became involved with Art Basel Hong Kong, officially assuming its current role as global Lead Partner of Art Basel for all three of its acclaimed international venues. 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 Clare McAndrew. The Art Basel and UBS Global Art Market Report will be issued in March 2017 during Art Basel Hong Kong.
UBS Art Collection at Art Basel in Miami Beach
This year’s selection of works from the UBS Art Collection in the firm’s VIP lounge, inspired by the new publication, is entitled UBS Art Collection: A History and a Moment. The selection showcases 30 artworks by 25 artists that offer insight into the history and evolution of the Collection, as well as new acquisitions that reflect the current moment in contemporary art. The display, curated by Rozell, includes seminal works by Alighiero Boetti (Mappa Del Mondo, 1978), Carroll Dunham (Large Shape with Bands, 1989), Mary Heilmann (Lupe’s Friends, 2001), Alex Katz (Red Coat, 1983), Sarah Morris (Midtown-PaineWebber (with Neon)), 1998), Ed Ruscha (Now Then As I Was About to Say, 1973), Cy Twombly (Untitled, 1981) and Christopher Wool (Untitled, 1989).
These works provide the foundation and context for a number of new acquisitions by Doug Aitken (FREE, 2016) and Wolfgang Tillmans (Headlight (e), 2012, as well as by emerging artists such as Sam Lewitt (Paper Citizen 4324, 2010) and Wardell Milan (The Flower No. 16, 2016). The selection is intended to juxtapose compositions of rigorous formality with painterly abstractions and create interplay between conceptual photography and word art, resulting in a dynamic exchange of some of the most intriguing and influential artists and ideas from the 1960s to the present.
UBS Planet Art Lounge at Art Basel Miami Beach 2016
This year, UBS hosts the UBS Planet Art Lounge, a public space in Hall D that will be open to all visitors throughout the duration of the show, through 4 December. All guests are invited to
- Relax and enjoy complimentary espresso;
- Explore UBS’s signature art news app, Planet Art;
- Watch Facebook Live conversations with art world leaders, conducted and produced by Artsy – the online resource for art collecting and education – in partnership with UBS;
- Watch the UBS Artcast to explore videos and download a customized playlist of UBS’s contemporary art projects, including:
- The Guggenheim UBS MAP Global Art Initiative, a program that creates direct access to contemporary art and education on a global scale
- SI: Visions, UBS’s collaborative film project with the Swiss Institute that shares engaging insight into the work of some of today’s most forward-looking artists, including some with work on view at Art Basel
- WOMEN: New Portraits, an international tour of newly commissioned photographs by world-renowned photographer Annie Leibovitz
UBS Art Collection: To Art its Freedom will be available for purchase through publisher Hatje Cantz in January 2017. The 24 × 30 cm, portrait format, hardcover volume will be available in English at www.hatjecantz.com as well as through select retail outlets.