I've been hearing about Art Basel for years, yet I never really understood what it was all about. So this year, being a new Florida resident, I decided to make a voyage down on train to Miami and see for myself what all the hoopla was about.
The entire city was pulsating with miles of art galleries, exhibits, street artists painting walls, DJ's, live music, free drinks and almost no cops anywhere. I couldn't believe how alive Miami was with the expressive energy of art everywhere. I was overjoyed!
My friends Carina and Kevin were cool enough to let me crash on their couch for the weekend. Carina is super into street art,works for Quiksilver and is a talented creative person in her own regard. She was my personal guide to all the hot spots and gave me some insight into some of her favorite artists.
When I arrived, I found out that my friend Garrett (aka G Love) was performing that evening, I told Carina and her and Megan were really amped on seeing him play, so we went over to Purdy Lounge and caught up with Garrett and his awesome girlfriend Sarah and friend Shelby. It was good seeing them and a kick ass way to start a weekend in Miami.
We drank entirely too much and paid the price for it the next day…Blaahhhh. But it was a fun night of drunken goofiness and art-overload. Kevin made me vegan pancakes and everything seemed to be ok.
I saw most of the big time indoor exhibits like SCOPE and Underbelly Project and saw some really cool stuff. I went to the convention center which was the “main event” and was baffled by a lot of it. There were some big names like Picasso on display, but mostly a lot of shit like this exhibit of rocks arranged on the floor. (see below). I mean, what the f–k is that?
The highlight for me at the convention center was seeing Mark Ryden‘s piece (below). I am not a believer that anything is art, to me, skill, technique and creativity is where it's at and Ryden knows what the hell he's doing. I definitely was more inspired by the outdoor street art than by the fancy shmancy 5 figure priced tape measure sculptures and blurry photos of pubic hair.
Overall though, I am stoked to go back next year, I had a blast and filled my thirst for culture for a little bit. I hope to be involved in it next year in some way with my art.
- (above) Definitely one of the highlights for me, Mark Ryden. Master of the brush.
- (above) Rocks on the floor? WTF is this? I am not a believer that everything is art.