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Herald St at Art Basel Hong Kong
Cary Kwok. One Cigarette in an Ashtray – Chapter 3, 2024Courtesy the artist and Herald St, London. Photo by Jackson White

Art Basel Hong Kong: The Best Booths to Visit at the Art Fair

As Art Basel returns to full scale in Hong Kong, we spotlight seven galleries exhibiting at the 2024 edition of the fair

Lead ImageCary Kwok. One Cigarette in an Ashtray – Chapter 3, 2024Courtesy the artist and Herald St, London. Photo by Jackson White

Spanning 40 countries, there are a whopping 242 exhibitors at this year’s Art Basel Hong Kong. To put that into perspective, if you were to spend just three minutes with each booth, it would take you more than 12 hours to complete the fair. It’s scaled up from last year when the post-Covid hangover was still palpable in and around the city, and the renaissance is helping cement Hong Kong as the art capital of Asia, aided by the recent openings of numerous brilliant museums and galleries.

And where the art goes, the crowd follows. Thousands of people are descending on the city for Hong Kong Art Week, with Art Basel being the jewel in the event’s crown. “We feel privileged to have been growing together with the community here for the past decade,” the fair’s director Angelle Siyang-Le says. “It’s also a starting point for us. We want to take this and radiate it out to the world, because what is so significant about this edition is that the artists have all returned to the show floor.”

Below, we list seven must-see galleries from Art Basel Hong Kong 2024.

David Zwirner, Booth 1C20

A 97 by 130-centimeter Infinity Net by Yayoi Kusama may have been attracting the most attention in David Zwirner’s booth, but elsewhere, there’s a significant range of works by artists including Mamma Andersson, Michaël Borremans, Marlene Dumas, Neo Rauch, Robert Ryman and Wolfgang Tillmans. Only a 15-minute bus ride away from the fair, you can find David Zwirner’s Hong Kong gallery space – which opened in 2018 – hosting a solo exhibition of new and recent work by Tillmans.

Xavier Hufkens, Booth 1C15

Commerce still rules in most Art Basel Hong Kong booths, with artwork densely decking much of the wall space, leaving little room to breathe. In comparison, Xavier Hufken’s booth feels unique. That’s not to say there was a lack of art – an excellent new work by Nathanaëlle Herbelin captures the woozy atmosphere of the dinner table, and another by Japanese artist Ulala Imai brings to life some fluffy stuffed toys, entering the fantastical minds of her children at play. Older works from Robert Mapplethorpe, Milton Avery, Leon Kossoff, and Louise Bourgeois – the latter for whom the gallery is the oldest representative of – create an exciting and diverse collection of brilliant contemporary art.

Gallery 1957, Booth 3C14

Presenting a group exhibition from leading voices in the African continent and its diaspora, Gallery 1957 has showcased eight artists who seek to reclaim the Black body, as well as to reinstate ideas surrounding African history in the context of contemporary art. Key works include a mammoth, vibrant painting by Ghanaian artist Amoako Boafo, Red And Green Apple Blanket, and Kwesi Botchway’s celebratory portraits of Black beauty and joy. Some campy sculptures of high-heeled shoes dot the booth’s floor, crafted by Cape Town-based artist Nabeeha Mohamed, whose work grapples with the contradictions of identity and class privilege in post-Apartheid South Africa.

Sadie Coles HQ, Booth 1C04

A booth from London-based Sadie Coles HQ packs a punch with its dedication to ecstatic art from Britain and beyond. Fresh off the back of Sarah Lucas’s major exhibition at the Tate Britain, Happy Gas, the gallery presents two Tit Tom sculptures made from models of stuffed tights, their construction suggestive of drooping breasts. With more sculpture, the gallery is debuting a new work from the latest artist to join their roster, Tau Lewis, whose 2024 work Lilith, crafted from leather, shearling and beads, finds its roots in the African diasporic experience. Elsewhere are playful embroidered works by Borna Sammak, whimsical portraits by Paloma Varga Weisz, a multi-material painting by Alvaro Barrington, and a (totally bonkers) zoophilic bronze sculpture by Urs Fischer.

PPOW, Booth 1D25

PPOW Gallery’s massive booth on the first floor comes jam-packed with a diverse range of gems. A hand-dyed and loomed large-scale tapestry by Brooklyn-based artist Erin M Riley serves as a highlight; with a sultry, headless mirror selfie, she depicts women’s search for self-identity. Elizabeth Glaessner’s ghostly, rich painting of a group of women evokes a surreal sense of freedom and fear, while a 1977 pencil drawing by Martin Wong shows the joys and complexities of American life. More highlights include works by Dotty Attie, Daniel Correa Mejía and Robin F Williams.

Sprüth Magers, Booth 1D23

In their booth, Cologne-born gallery Sprüth Magers retains its close ties with the art community of Germany and the American artists that form the core of its roster. Showcasing some picture generation heavyweights, including John Baldessari, Jenny Holzer, Barbara Kruger and Cindy Sherman, alongside German artists Thomas Ruff, Andreas Schulze and Rosemarie Trockel, Sprüth Magers’ booth is abuzz with radical, internationally renowned talent.

Herald St, Booth 3D10

London-based gallery Herald St has arrived at Art Basel Hong Kong, showcasing the work of three artists from their roster of 27. Naotaka Hiro’s vibrant-hued work grapples with the body, which he stretches to incomprehensible limits. Hong Kong-born, London-based artist Cary Kwok brings his playful paintings, which depict quiet situations with an emotional, erotic charge. “When details are zoomed in, you, as a viewer, are now only given clues and have more room to construct your own narratives,” Kwok told AnOther previously. Cole Lu’s ‘paintings’ don’t use paint at all, but wood and linen that has been burnt, writing with fire as a return to the prehistoric origins of storytelling.

Art Basel Hong Kong runs from 28 – 30 March 2024.