Get Ready Miami – Basel 2018 Will be Here Before You Know It
It’s almost time to find your artsy fartsy outfits and get ready again for the marathon week of Baselmania in Miami. What originally started out with a delay due to 9/11, has turned into a gargantuan giga-art week in the “Magic City”.
This art fair founded and named after a city in Switzerland called Basel in 1970, added Miami 16 years ago as its sister art city. A couple years ago Art Basel Hong Kong was added to the family. And now they have tagged on Art Cities for pop up fairs. The first Art City bestowed with the honor was Buenos Aires this past September.
Art Basel’s world-leading shows in Basel, Hong Kong and Miami connect collectors, galleries, and artists.
The recently launched Art Basel Cities initiative highlights local art scenes and facilitates international collaborations.
For Miami, there are over 250 of the world’s leading galleries participate drawing over 70,000 visitors each year, offering an exciting and inspiring week for artists, collectors, curators, critics and art enthusiasts.
A highlight coming up for this year’s addition of Art Basel Miami Beach is titled, “A World of Uncertainty” in which nine artists question the way we live.
For fun taking a look back over the past 15 years of Art Basel Miami Beach, I uncovered these quotes first featured in Departures Magazine. Enjoy the retrospective ride shared in words by art notables below.
Mira Rubell: “It’s become like Burning Man, an adventure you have to take. People who don’t collect art are embarrassed to say they haven’t been. My attorney from Baltimore said, “Omigod, we’ve been thinking about going.” (Collector)
Sam Orlofsky: “Everybody in New York started to figure out it was a good excuse to get away for the weekend. That’s when it became a runaway train.” (Director, Gagosian Gallery)
Eric Shiner: “I remember opening days, when you watched the mad rush as people literally came running into the fair. There was this competitive mentality to get the good stuff, like at Filene’s Basement.” (Director, Andy Warhol Museum)
Sara Fitzmaurice: “By 2006 or so, even the general public—the people who buy a ticket to come in on Saturday—had stopped mispronouncing it as “Bay-zull.” (U.S. representative of Art Basel; founder, Fitz + Co)
Takashi Murakami: “The less serious it was becoming just made me want to be involved more. I love a good circus.” (Artist)
Marianne Boesky: “It hit a crazy peak when I found Paris Hilton in an elevator drunk, and I thought, “This is not about art anymore.” (Gallerist)
Carter Cleveland: “Our party with Chanel was wild. We underestimated how much awareness had grown, and it was not our plan to have people waiting in such a long line on the beach. There were women in $10,000 dresses almost falling into the ocean!” (Founder, Artsy)
Marianne Boesky: “Two years ago a friend and I walked out of the Convention Center on opening night and there was a little Cuban guy behind the wheel of a taxi. We asked, “Can we keep you for the night?” Our itinerary was 14 parties—something at the Versace mansion, couple of different private home parties. At the end of the night, we had 13 people stuffed into that taxi. She still talks about it.” (Gallerist)
Takashi Murakami: “In Japan the art world is expected to be strictly academic, so the scale of the parties was beyond my imagination.” (Artist)
One major difference between the original Basel and its Miami outpost:
the celebrity quotient, which impresses even art-world VIPs.
Jeanne Greenberg-Rohatyn: “A few years ago, I presented Nate Lowman in Alex Rodriguez’s batting café; we hung one of Lowman’s paintings of bullet holes and joked about Rodriguez hitting the baseball through one of the holes. The mix of people who came was Alex’s friends, the art world, young artists, a total mash-up. You could only do that in Miami.” (Owner, Salon 94)
Jeanne Greenberg-Rohatyn: “People who might not have made the pilgrimage to an art fair come for the parties. They start out as lookers and become buyers. It’s reverse engineering.” (Owner, Salon 94)
Sara Fitzmaurice: “Many collectors have bought homes in Miami—look at the Faena residences. They’ve sold to a who’s who of the art world. Everyone got together and made Miami an art city now.” (U.S. representative of Art Basel; founder, Fitz + Co.)
Yes, in closing, everyone and their uncle got together and made Miami an art city.
God only knows, what the next 15 art years will bring.
Art Basel Miami Beach 2018 edition will be held December 6 to 9.
But beware, because the Miami art explosion starts the beginning of the week.
So be ready and waiting on the sands of South Beach by December 2.