She may have yet to release new music, but there’s no denying that Rihanna has been everywhere; in 2019 alone, she’s made history as both the first woman of color to helm a luxury fashion line at LVMH and the world’s richest female musician. And last week, she even made her first major foray into the art world—which somehow failed to notice the star in its midst.
On Friday, a full three days after the fair’s VIP preview, Rihanna set foot in the 2019 edition of what’s been called the Olympics of the art world: Art Basel, a megafair that this year drew nearly 300 art dealers and their wares to the titular city of Basel, Switzerland. In general, it’s no stranger to celebrity; art-world fan boys such as Leonardo DiCaprio and Brad Pitt have both recently made the trek. But this year, Rihanna was pretty much the only attendee with star power—and also perhaps the first ever in the fair’s 50-year history to go practically unnoticed, even as she roamed booths as big as Gagosian, taking in unmissable works like a towering Jeff Koons.
According to Artsy, Rihanna also enjoyed herself in David Nolan’s booth, where she paused to take a photo of one of Richard Artschwager’s wooden sculptures. She was also not without company; as usual these days, her billionaire boyfriend, Hassan Jameel, who she’s been dating for two years now, dutifully served as her arm candy.
Ironically enough, the art world might actually know Jameel better than Rihanna stans (who, to be fair, are very familiar with his looks and his wallet). The 30-year-old Saudi businessman is also something of an art-world power player, with the net worth—his family’s was last reported at $2.2 billion—to prove it. (For comparison, Rihanna’s is $600 million.) His family owns the conglomerate Abdul Latif Jameel, as well as a Dubai-based art center; and before Rihanna came into his life, he was married to an art critic and curator, Lina Lazaar. Not that his fellow fairgoers recognized him, either.
Outside of the Messe Basel, though, they did make an impression on at least one other human: a Swiss man whose brother owns the restaurant and hotel where Rihanna grabbed lunch. (If Jameel did, too, he apparently didn’t merit a picture.)