Lucky 13 for VOLTA?

BY Katrina Kufer / Jun 10 2017 / 23:00 PM

Art Basel’s long running satellite fair set to open 12 June with 70 dealers is hoping for heavy turnout given Europe’s art-packed summer programming

Lucky 13 for VOLTA?
Image courtesy Knight Webb Gallery
Juliane Hundertmark. (Detail) Spring. 2017. Mixed media on canvas. 150 × 175 cm.

Established in 2005 by Amanda Coulson and Ulrich Voges as a fair for new international positions, a collaborative effort between dealers and friends, VOLTA describes itself as “a platform for international galleries beyond young art stalwart Liste and market heavyweight Art Basel.” With Coulson as artistic director, the fair has made its mark with eclectic dynamism, focusing on solo presentations (or two- and three-artist booths) that belie its middleman position.

This year, 70 galleries from 43 cities with artists from 50 countries join VOLTA 13, 12 galleries of which are showing for the first time (for the full list of participants see here). New names include LMAKgallery (New York), Galleria Bianconi (Milan), Roger Katwijk (Amsterdam) and Galerie Charlot (Paris), who are flocking to the fair for its solid reputation of providing a high-quality and mature platform for mid-career galleries.

The 13th edition is also likely to be a “lucky edition”, indicated the co-founders, who base their playful speculation on the fact that they both are born on the 13th day of their respective months. “[I am] really excited to see the incarnation of all the proposals we received,” said Coulson in a statement. “The range is really extraordinary—from Biennale participating artists to new faces—so my feeling is the fair will be both quite energizing and educational—even a bit challenging, just like most teenagers!”

While Coulson is enthusiastic, it is to be noted that over 30 galleries from the 2016 edition will not be returning. However, 2017 may prove more promising in terms of collector footfall as VOLTA will coincide with the 57th Venice Biennale (Venice), documenta14 (Athens/Kassel) and Skulpture Projekte Muenster, also in Germany, as part of what is being slated as the “Grand Tour”.

VOLTA 13 runs 12-17 June at Markthalle, Basel, Switzerland. For more information visit