On September 20th at Art Basel Unlimited, Mitchell-Innes & Nash (New York), Mai 36 Galerie (Zurich), Maureen Paley (London) and Esther Schipper (Berlin) will jointly present AIDS Cross (1991/2021), the most recent of General Idea’s history of AIDS works in various media. All four galleries will additionally present works by General Idea in their respective fair booths, alongside a suite of works by their other represented artists.
Formed in 1969 by AA Bronson, Felix Partz and Jorge Zontal, General Idea created a singular body of work that addressed the intersection of art and commerce, the role of the artist and the museum, body politics, and the AIDS crisis. The group was active until 1994 when Partz and Zontal died of AIDS-related causes. AIDS Cross is part of a new series of AIDS paintings conceived by General Idea in the 90s, but that weren’t realized due to the passing of Partz and Zontal.
In response to an invitation to create works for the first Art Against AIDS benefit in 1987, General Idea appropriated the colours and stacked letter design of Robert Indiana’s widely quoted LOVE (1966), re-configuring it to read “AIDS.” Producing paintings, posters, wallpaper, postage stamps, public sculpture, and billboards, General Idea spread its AIDS logo throughout art institutions as well as the transportation and advertising systems of North America and Europe, with the now iconic series. Comprising five panels that form a cross, AIDS Cross is one of General Idea’s largest AIDS works to date, standing at over 14 feet tall and wide. The painting echoes the form and dimensions of Robert Indiana’s LOVE Cross (1967), while also mimicking the emblem of the International Red Cross.
Art Basel Unlimited
Unlimited Opening (by invitation only)
Monday, September 20, 2021, 3pm to 8pm, First Choice VIP cardholders Monday, September 20, 2021, 6pm to 8pm, Preview VIP cardholders
Private Days (by invitation only)
Tuesday, September 21, 2021, 11am to 8pm Wednesday, September 22, 2021, 11am to 8pm Thursday, September 23, 2021, 11am to 7pm
Vernissage (by invitation only)
Thursday, September 23, 2021, 2pm to 7pm
Friday, September 24, 2021, 11am to 7pm Saturday, September 25, 2021, 11am to 7pm Sunday, September 26, 2021, 11am to 7pm