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Cartier steps in to replace Bulgari as Art Basel sponsor

The termination of Bulgari's funding provided the perfect opportunity for Cartier to take up the mantle

The Italian jewellers Bulgari, which has sponsored Art Basel’s series of talks—Conversations—for the past three years, has not renewed its support following the end of its contract in December 2006. Bulgari was unwilling to comment although its withdrawal is believed to be due to a change of guard in its communications department. The decision was good news for French jewellers Cartier, says Art Basel director Sam Keller, as they have been keen to support the fair but have been prevented from doing so by an exclusivity clause in the Bulgari contract. Cartier have committed themselves to a three-year participation in Art Basel and Art Basel/Miami Beach through their Fondation Cartier museum, a jewel in Paris’s contemporary art scene. Their booth at this year’s Art Basel, at the entrance of Hall 2, is displaying the work of the French installation artist Pierrick Sorrin. The British branch of Cartier already sponsors an art award at Frieze in London every October which will continue as before. From this year Cartier will also sponsor Frieze projects, a series of artist commissions.