Marc-Olivier Wahler Chosen As First Audemars Piguet Art Commission Guest Curator

Marc-Olivier Wahler has been chosen as the first guest curator for the annual Audemars Piguet Art Commission. Wahler has been invited by the brand to work with the first artist selected for the commission on the production of a major new artwork to be unveiled at Art Basel in Basel 2015. As the founder and director of the Chalet Society in Paris, and the former director of the Palais de Tokyo, Wahler brings the experience of organising over 400 exhibitions during the last 20 years to Audemars Piguet’s new arts commissioning project.
Drawing on inspiration from the craftsmanship and technical excellence inherent to Audemars Piguet’s legacy of watchmaking, the Audemars Piguet Art Commission will support artists in the creation of new works which explore relationships between contemporary creative practice and complex mechanics, technology, and science. For each annual commission, a shortlist of artists will be invited to Audemars Piguet’s home in Le Brassus to learn about the brand’s 140-year tradition of precision, expert craftsmanship and innovation before one artist is selected to create a major new artwork. Audemars Piguet will help develop each project and will provide access to advanced tools, craft expertise and the sophisticated technology needed to realise the work.
After the first work is unveiled at Art Basel in Basel 2015, the annual commissions will be presented on a rotating basis at the three international locations of Art Basel in Hong Kong, Miami Beach and Basel. The works are expected to tour after their Art Basel debut, and, where possible, they will be exhibited at Audemars Piguet’s home in the Vallée de Joux, in Switzerland.
Marc-Olivier Wahler, the first guest curator for the Commission said: “The new Audemars Piguet Art Commission has been dedicated to themes that artists have been exploring for centuries – complexity, time, creative virtuosity, the exploration of the extreme limits of achievement with materials and technology. All of these themes resonate powerfully in the art world of today.  As a curator who grew up in Switzerland, I feel a strong connection to the traditions as well as the evolution of the Swiss Haute Horology that Audemars Piguet represents. The new Commission will help artists take their work to a new level and make possible projects that may not otherwise have a chance of getting beyond the drawing board. I am delighted to serve as the first invited guest curator in this series.”
Marc Spiegler, Director Art Basel, said: “We are delighted to be part of our partner Audemars Piguet’s rapidly rising engagement with the artworld, reflected in the recent announcement of its substantial new arts commissioning project – and look forward to seeing the results next year during our shows.”

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