STELLA (*1990), who earned her Bachelor of Fine Arts at Zurich University of the Arts, is one of the young artists whose work is on display this week at the LISTE – Art Fair Basel. As the winner of this year's Helvetia Art Prize, STELLA has a solo exhibition space. The young artist is using this to present her "No Money – No Original" shop and stand, for which she has specifically made bags and items of clothing that are inspired by the current Chanel collection. The display she has created features the trappings of a branded shop and reflects the luxury items in a painting that looks like a blotted print of the original. There is nothing like a blurred image to undermine the impact of advertising. In 2014 STELLA had already created a series of logos onto which she had placed a panel before they were fully dry.
The image of a young woman sitting on her sofa in the evenings crocheting Chanel bags is rather charming. And STELLA plays on a whole host of perceptions that always have something to do with the heart of branding: desires and promises. Hence in true pop art style her copies thematize on the one hand the value of the original – for of course an object made by an artist completely fulfils our expectations of an original. On the other hand, there is the vogue for handmade goods prized by luxury labels and consumer critics alike, and which STELLA criticizes with her imperfect look. At the same time she explores the meaning of work in a capitalist system and gives it a face. "No Money - No Original" is appropriation art in a comprehensive sense: "I do art à porter, art on people", says STELLA.
Solo exhibition as a start-up boost
STELLA's solo exhibition at the LISTE art fair is part of the Helvetia Art Prize which the insurance company created to assist young artists at the beginning of their careers. Together with prize money of CHF 15,000, the exhibition is intended to help young artists start their professional careers by enabling them to show their work to a specialist international audience. The winner of the art prize is chosen by a jury of specialists from well-known art institutions. This year the members of the jury are Kathleen Bühler (Curator of the Department of Contemporary Art at the Kunstmuseum Bern), Jean-Paul Felley (Co-Director of the Centre Culturel Suisse in Paris), Helen Hirsch (Director of the Kunstmuseum Thun) and Dorothee Messmer (Director of the Kunstmuseum Olten).
Information about the LISTE – Art Fair Basel
STELLA, Winner of the 2016 Helvetia Art Prize
Burgweg 15, Basel, Switzerland
Monday, 13 June 2016, 5 to 9 p.m., entry free
Tuesday to Saturday, 14 to 18 June 2016, 1 to 9 p.m.
Sunday, 19 June 2016, 1 to 6 p.m.
This media release is also available on our website