Kunsthalle Basel is a place for innovative contemporary art exhibitions of an emerging generation of artists. As Switzerland’s oldest and still most active institutions for contemporary art, Kunsthalle Basel forms a vital part of Basel's cultural centre and is located next to the city’s theatre, opposite the concert house Stadtcasino, and in the same building as the famed Restaurant Kunsthalle. Bringing together local and international contemporary art tendencies, Kunsthalle Basel is well known for its presentation of thought-provoking new artworks and display methodologies, as well as for its wide range of public programs that include artist talks, performances, and film screenings. With a long list of esteemed curators and directors who have helmed the institution, including over the last decades, Jean-Christophe Ammann, Peter Pakesch, and Adam Szymczyk, it has, since November 2014, been directed by Los Angeles-born Elena Filipovic.
The construction of Kunsthalle Basel was prompted in 1864 by the merger of the Society of Basel Artists and the Basler Kunstverein founded in 1839. At the inauguration of the building in spring 1872, the former president of the Basler Kunstverein, Johann Jakob Im Hof, summed up the programme of the future Kunsthalle: ’to provide a place for the fine arts in order to stimulate, promote and spread artistic interest within our hometown as well as to foster friendly relations between artists and art lovers.’
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