Art Basel Miami Beach: Comfy Shoes Required

Art Basel Miami Beach

MIAMI BEACH — An estimated 40,000 art enthusiasts, art collectors, artists, dealers, curators and critics will attend the eighth annual Art Basel Miami Beach, America's preeminent contemporary art fair. From December 3-6, the fair, held at Miami Beach Convention Center, will offer contemporary art and rare museum-caliber artworks.

Art Basel Miami Beach is the younger sister of Art Basel Switzerland, held annually in June since 1970.

This year's Art Basel Miami Beach boasts itself as bigger and better - 20% more exhibition space, extra lounge areas, wider aisles and bigger stands - so you'll want to wear comfy shoes in order to see it all. Exclusive selections of more than 250 leading art galleries from North America, Latin America, Europe, Asia and Africa will exhibit 20th and 21st-century artworks by over 2,000 artists. Visitors will also experience an exciting program of special exhibitions, parties and crossover events featuring music, film, architecture and design.

In the city known for its all-night parties, Art Basel Miami Beach always attracts its share of celebrities. So far, early sightings include Lenny Kravitz, Sylvester Stallone, Calvin Klein, Naomi Campbell and John McEnroe. Stallone, who paints when he's not busy acting, unveiled a collection of his artwork at the fair. "I’m not just painting for painting’s sake. I want to be truthful," said Stallone, who reportedly already sold two paintings for $40,000 and $50,000.

Are these early sales a good sign? Tough economic times have caused most art collectors to scale back on their spending, but fair organizers remain optimistic. “What we are seeing, and what we saw at other shows in the fall, is that there is definitely a market for high quality art,” said Art Basel co-director Marc Spiegler.
Art Basel Miami Beach
Art Basel Miami Beach
Art Basel Miami Beach
Art Basel Miami Beach
Art Basel Miami (December 3-6, 2009) | Website
[Images: Top - Olaf Breuning, "Colors" (2009), Metro Pictures, New York. | Bottom - (Row 1, Left) Galerie Max Hetzler, Berlin. (Row 1, Right) James Cohan Gallery, New York. (Row 2, Left) Niels Borch Jensen Editions & Gallery, Berlin. (Row 2, Right) Mona Hatoum, "Undercurrent (red)" (2008), Galleria Continua, San Gimignano.]


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