Report by: Samannaz Rohanimanesh
(Miami, FL): Continuing to draw more than 73,000 collectors, artists, tourists and art dealers, Art Basel Miami Beach 2015 jaunts uniquely not only on the refractory contemporary art scene, but also on the musically driven nightlife stage.
Day 2nd and 3rd were spiced up by visits to art fairs such as UNTITLED, SCOPE, SPECTRUM and RED DOT, each encompassing unparalleled idiosyncrasy of eclectic cutting edge contemporary art.
As urban juried contemporary art shows, SPECTRUM and RED DOT appear to celebrate what might translate into lower quality upscale art with a focus on decorative spans. Outbursts of primary reds, yellows and blues garnishing the masterly rendered figurative motifs and a touch of trompe-l’œil here and there, attracts a half art-half party seeker range of audience to Miami Downtown away from the South Beach swarm.
Spanning for more than 15 years, SCOPE is another critically acclaimed international showcase for emerging multi-disciplinary art scene. With its monumental pavilion SCOPE embeds over a 100 exhibitors each year with a focus on figurative, upscale decorative and representational art worth over thousands.
“I had to kill her and two more, I had to watch her bleed.” Screamed a woman detained by the police after stabbing a student in Art Basel Miami while people thought it is an art performance!
On the other hand, UNTITLED succeeds in raising the flag of authentic contemporary art with its innovative approach. Founded in 2012 and with its selective curatorial team, Omar López-Chahoud the artistic director and Christophe Boutin and Melanie Scarciglia the curators, UNTITLED acknowledges a selection of galleries, non-profit institutions, works of emerging and establishing artists, and artist-run exhibition spaces in an architecturally designed venue. Paired-down designed elements of Minimal art and conceptual installations embellish the austere layout of the fair, while galleries from 16 us cities and 18 countries focus on the quality rather than the profit.
Like any other high-margine art fair, Art Basel highlights its closing days with an array of enthralling incidents. Contrary to the common belief, most of the artworks presented at Art Basel have been presold and collectors are merely participating the fair to enjoy the upscale celebrity attended parties. Boats and private yachts are harbored at various locations and rolls and limos can be detected in front of Versace house and Hilfiger hotel. Silvester Stalone, Leonardo Dicaprio, Miley Cyrus and Kim Kardashian are some of the few famous folks glamourizing the scene.
But the most appalling episode of Basel occurred Friday night when a 24 year-old female art student stabbed another woman (both art patrons, not exhibitors or artists) in the arms and neck with a X-Acto knife in Convention Center while the fair-goers considered it as performance art. The victim was taken to the hospital with no life threatening wounds and the attacker named Siyuan Zhao, was arrested while screaming “I had to kill her and two more, I had to watch her bleed.” Zaho is charged with felony-attempted murder.