July 31, 2012
It is strange to think that just over a week ago I was strolling with Miranda and our two sons through the lush summer gardens of the Fondation Beyeler in Basel. This has to be – on a par with the Louisana Art Centre outside Copenhagen – one of the world’s most idyllic settings for absorbing Modern and Contemporary art. Founded by the Beyeler family in the 1940s, it remains a family affair, and you can feel it. The old house is now reserved for admin, the new Renzo Piano structure housing the impressive collection. The spaces are not over-scaled, an incredible roof/ceiling design allows the gallery to be nearly always lit by natural light. It makes the interior spaces feel quiet, distilled, it is gentle on the work – especially the permanent collection which is rich in Chagall, Cezanne, Picasso, Monet, Rothko, Giacometti. A real win for Renzo. And a triumph for art.