For starters, popping by Art Basel Miami Beach (ABMB) for 75 minutes is sheer madness. There are 267 exhibitors occupying 500,000 square feet of the Miami Beach Convention Center representing the top galleries and artists from around the world. Still, when there's only 75 minutes left before closing and it's Sage Cotignola's last day in Miami, it's better to see something than nothing. Besides, art critic James Croak had the heavy lifting of putting the fair into perspective. To read his review, click here. This left Cotignola, production and social media for Hamptons Art Hub, and I free to look at art and enjoy the experience. And we did.
In the Project section, we chanced upon a performance by KniggerKhaffirKhoon (aka "KKK") that would have been right at home at Robert Wilson's Watermill Center. "TRACEY ROSE: Art thou not fair" was presented by Dan Gunn (Berlin) in the Positions section of ABMB. Designed like a giant Punch and Judy set, the actors and action unfolded at the top of a "wall" that conjured the idea of a puppet show set. Intense and dark, we watched for a time but had to move on.
Seeing only a postage stamp size of the art, the installation Small Rain by Swiss artist Urs Fischer was a fun and wonderous one. Exhibited by Sadie Coles (London), it was a strange sensation standing apart from the rain and not being a part of it. The work is made up of 1,080 lime green clay raindrops, each 6 inches long. Installed throughout are several figures in decay (or, what's left of them). The installation is both bright and dark, simple and complex and ultimately intriguing.
Work No. 2070: People by Marton Creed was sheer fun. Especially when people walked in front of it. The installation was exhibited by Gavin Bown's enterprise (New York).
Intimate landscapes built from color blocks by Etel Adnan also attracted. Intimate and quiet, the solo exhibition was part of ABMB's Kabinett Section, designed to reveal something about an artist's practice. Adnan's work was presented by Galerie Lelong (New York). Known for landscape, the Lebanese-born artist is inspired by Mount Tamalpais in California and explores the condition of living in exile and the "intangibility of the concept of 'home"', according to the gallery.
By then, the countdown to closing had already begun and we walked, reluctantly, to find the exit that was the same as the one we entered. (There are multiple exits and entrances so it's easy to find yourself far away from where you began.)
NEXT UP: Miami Day 4: Miami Project
BASIC FACTS: Art Basel Miami Beach takes place from December 4 to 7, 2014 at Miami Beach Convention Center. The convention center is located at 1901 Convention Center Dr, Miami Beach, FL 33139. www.artbasel.com.
Hamptons Art Hub will publish continual coverage of Art Basel Miami Beach and Miami Art Fair Week. Check back for daily dispatches.
Pat Rogers is the publisher of Hamptons Art Hub and an arts journalist.
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