Grand Basel is the ultimate global show for automotive masterpieces, with the vision of ‘Celebrating Excellence in Motion’. The show is not just an exhibition, but a platform for automotive culture: a forum, a market place and a space for discussion. Its debut show in Basel marks the beginning of a global tour.
The show focuses on collectors’ pieces from the past and present, as well as on new cars of exceptional value and impeccable quality. The exhibition brings together a limited number of carefully-selected, top-of-the-range automobiles – not just the most dignified and luxurious classic cars, but also one-off contemporary editions and technically-advanced concept cars.
What makes Grand Basel unique is that these automotive masterpieces have been carefully selected with special consideration for each car’s cultural meaning, conceptual innovation, condition, provenance, rarity and value.
Grand Basel is also the world’s first and only show to present the automobile in contexts of art, design, architecture and lifestyle; bringing together significant automobiles in an unrivalled, pioneering setting. The show is a completely new approach to exhibiting, discussing and honoring the car.
A global show for a diverse audience
“Grand Basel presents international connoisseurs, experts and collectors with the epitome of automotive culture,” explained Global Director, Mark Backé. “It will appeal to a broad enthusiast audience interested in automobile aesthetics, technological sophistication, art and culture.”
As well as showcasing exclusive and rare cars of the highest calibre, Grand Basel presents cultural highlights and – at the inaugural show – even a world premiere.
While visiting the show, guests will also be able to appreciate the tension between architecture, design, art and the automobile in a range of special exhibitions. Several of these areas have been specially curated by members of the advisory board – a unique set of cultural connoisseurs who have helped to shape the direction of the inaugural Grand Basel.
With their input and support, Grand Basel is a truly open and connected show, relevant to the contemporary and the classic, the analogue and the digital.
Grand Basel in Basel
One of the special features at the first show in Basel will be six curated frames that display individual cars and associated objects, each chosen by a member of the advisory board. While the rest of the exhibits will represent a ‘hive mind’ of consideration, these six frames will showcase very personal interpretations of automotive culture.
The advisory board includes: contemporary artist, Sylvie Fleury; renowned creative entrepreneur and founder of Garage Italia, Lapo Elkann; founder of the Goodbrands Institute for Automotive Culture and chairman of Grand Basel’s advisory board, Prof. Paolo Tumminelli; cultural commentator and author, Stephen Bayley; design theoretician, Prof. Dr. Michael Erlhoff; and world-renowned ‘car designer of the century’ Giorgetto Giugiaro.
“It is no coincidence that for Grand Basel’s debut show in Basel, we have an advisory board made up of leading European voices on the automobile, art and architecture,” explained Mark Backé. “Each Grand Basel will be uniquely relevant to the region where it is taking place, and so for our future shows in the North America and Asia, you may see different perspectives and personalities shaping the presentation.”
The show’s exhibits are carefully selected to just 113 cars, spread over a total show space of 32,000 square metres. A separate ‘Collectors Lounge’ displays a selection of 8 vehicles, set over 7,000 square metres. Exceptional cars have travelled to the show from Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Belgium, the UK, Italy and the USA, and are being exhibited not just by dealers, but by private collectors, museums, manufacturers and coachbuilders.
Exhibition inspired by architecture
Grand Basel’s show style is a bold deviation from the often-nostalgic ambience of established car events. It has a striking, homogenous design, inspired by contemporary architecture. This chosen structure allows exhibits to be presented and admired in a surrounding reminiscent of modern museums, with exceptional automobiles shown in ‘frames’, honouring these cars as the masterpieces they are.
Grand Basel’s world tour
The format of Grand Basel was conceived so that presentation of the show in various locations around the world is part of the agenda. The automobile influences – and is influenced by – society and culture in every part of the globe, and so the discussions at Grand Basel will always have relevance.
The inaugural Grand Basel show in Basel takes place from 6 to 9 September 2018. It is the prelude to a global tour, with a future show in Miami Beach already in development. Every show will have a distinct identity, with the Grand Basel team setting regional and national priorities, and continually reviewing and refining their intercultural aspirations.
About Grand Basel
Grand Basel is the ultimate show for automotive masterpieces. Showcasing a top-of-the-range selection of cars from the past, present and future, Grand Basel is the first and only show to present the automobile in the cultural context of art, design, architecture and lifestyle.
Grand Basel addresses a discerning audience of collectors, restoration and conservation experts, dealers, manufacturers and connoisseurs, offering a global platform for exchange. The show is being organised by the MCH Group, a leading international live-marketing company headquartered in Basel, which is also responsible for Art Basel. Following its premiere in Basel in September 2018, further shows in other parts of the world are being planned.