December 4-7, 2014
Artists and art lovers from across the country and around the world are just days away from arriving in Miami Beach for one of the biggest events on the south Florida social calendar, and that is Art Basel Miami Beach. Over 70,000 people will be in the Miami area for the annual event, starting this year on Thursday, December 4 and running through Sunday, December 7.
The original Art Basel exposition started in Switzerland in 1970. Miami Beach has played host to an American version of Art Basel every year since 2002. This year, 300 art galleries and museums are presenting portions of their collections for perusal, and in some cases, purchase. The oeuvres of both established artists and newcomers are celebrated at Art Basel Miami Beach.
The aforementioned art galleries and museums will have open houses for the four days of Art Basel; many of these galleries are located in Miami’s Design District or the Arts District. There are also large-scale shows; one will be held at the Miami Beach Convention Center (1901 Convention Center Drive). Public artwork installations can be seen in the open air at Collins Park (2100 Collins Avenue), and works on film can be seen at the Convention Center and at SoundScape Park (500 17th Street).
The Art Basel Miami Beach centerpiece show, covering over 500,000 square feet at the Miami Beach Convention Center, will be open to the public starting at 3 p.m. on Thursday, December 4, with closing time at 8 p.m. The Convention Center will reopen on Friday, December 5 at noon and close at 8 p.m.; the same hours apply for Saturday, December 6. The final day of Art Basel is Sunday, December 7; public viewing hours are from noon to 6 p.m.
To attend the art show at the Miami Beach Convention Center, as well as some other events, you must purchase tickets. Free events will be noted throughout this article. A one-day admission ticket costs $45 and an all-inclusive pass costs $100. You can buy the tickets at the venue, online at artbasel.com/en/Miami-Beach, or in advance at the Colony Theatre box office (1040 Lincoln Road).
Here are two LGBT-related events that I’m sure you’ll love going to during Art Basel Week in Miami.
Art for Equality – On the night before Art Basel, join HRC South Florida at the White Porch Gallery @ R House Wynwood (2727 NW 2nd Avenue, Miami). The works of some of the most prominent LGBT and LGBT-allied artists will be on display, and some of these artists’ pieces can be won as prizes in a special raffle (the proceeds will benefit HRC South Florida). Participating artists include Judeth Mueller from here in Miami; Katherine Baltivik and Steve Bowersock from Provincetown; Dietmar Brixy from Mannheim, Germany; and Manela Holly from Santiago de Cali, Colombia. Tickets cost $25 and they include one complimentary cocktail per ticket. Purchase tickets ahead of time by going to hrc.org/artforequality.
Queer Biennial – This event opens at 7 p.m. on Thursday, December 4 and runs through to January 14, 2015 at Hôtel Gaythering (1409 Lincoln Road). It is billed as “a national survey focusing on the current moment in queer/LGBT culture.” Not only is this exposition being presented in Miami, but it is also being shown in Los Angeles, New York City, Mexico City and Paris at the same time. The curator is Rubén Esparza and the artworks (installation, performance and video) of three dozen LGBT artists are on display, including the works of Ben Cuevas, Gio Black Peter, Scooter LaForge and Rick Castro. If you have any questions, contact Rubén Esparza at email@example.com.
Art Basel-Sponsored Events
There are a number of events on the calendar that are of interest to the art lover. Here are three Art Basel-sponsored events that you must see.
Design Talks – Design Miami presents panel discussions and conversations with people considered “luminaries” in the art community locally and around the world. Tickets can be purchased by calling (305) 572-0866. Design Miami, Meridian Avenue and 19th Street, 6 p.m. to 7 p.m., December 3, 4 and 5
Conversations – Four discussions featuring prominent members of the art world today focus on the insider’s perspective: how do they feel about collecting art and exhibiting their own? What things factor into production of artwork? This series is sponsored by Absolut. Free to the public, Miami Beach Convention Center, 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., December 4, 5, 6 and 7
Salon – Eighteen different presentations will be featured at the Miami Beach Convention Center, ranging from artist talks and lectures to live performances. The scope of the Salon is to get people acclimated to art from all over the world. Accessible with Convention Center ticket, 1 p.m. to 7 p.m., December 4, 5, 6 and 7
For more information about Art Basel Miami Beach, visit artbasel.com/en/Miami-Beach.