Miami Art Week, As Trashy As Saatchi’s Tirade Suggests?

For Andrew Berardini, Art Basel Miami Beach 2011 was stressful, according to his report in Artforum from the celebrity-filled weekend. His story seemed honest. Read article here.

Other reports indicate this year was as outrageous and successful as ever in Miami. The Art Newspaper reminded us of Art Basel’s modest beginnings; ten years ago a gallery might have sold one piece, profiting a total of $640; that same gallery hopes to make $500,000 each year at Art Basel now.

Further, Diddy, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Paris Hilton and Julian Schnabel were in attendance—so that means something.

Cyndi Conn of Santa Fe attended and here is her blog post on the subject: had the following to say about the Pulse Contemporary Art Fairs:

Early sales included such big-ticket items as two Damien Hirst spin paintings sold by Ernst Hilger for $150,000; a couple of Alison Schulnick paintings sold by Mark Moore for $18,000 and $18,5000; and half a dozen Gary Fabian Miller seascape photos, sold by Danziger Projects for $20,000 each.”

But with all this up-beat Miami press closely following the remarks of Charles Saatchi last Friday, December 2, in the Guardian where he says that art buying “is the sport of the Eurotrashy, Hedge-fundy, Hamptonites; of trendy oligarchs and oiligarchs; and of art dealers with masturbatory levels of self-regard,” I cannot help but relate Saatchi’s comments to Art Basel, too. Although Saatchi made no specific mention of the fairs in Miami in his tirade, he underscored the grotesqueries of the art market so well as a: “fervour of peacock excess, it’s not even considered necessary to waste one’s time looking at the works on display.” Wow.

Of course, a few polished people made money during Miami Art Week. But supposing the “art world” is as hideous as Charles Saatchi describes, and match those comments with what actor/journalist Stephen Fry calls “a hole” or “rotting place” with “horrible, horrible concrete buildings” (i.e. the city of Miami, Stephen Fry in America) and you’ve got the perfect place to take out art’s trash.

The following selection of photos were taken by Paul Klein from this year’s events in Miami.

[slideshow id=55]

Write us your thoughts about this post. Play nice.
  1. Lee Mulcahy says:

    Aspen Art Museum Forbids Leader of Occupy Aspen to Enter Property

    The GaleristNY

    By Michael H. Miller 12/16 11:17am

    Aspen Art Museum.

    Lee Mulcahy, an artist and the leader behind the Occupy Aspen movement, has been told by police that he can no longer set foot on the site of the future home of the redesigned Aspen Art Museum. Museum officials told the Aspen Times that Mr. Mulcahy had “replaced museum signs with his own signs,” posting “for sale” signs on trailers on the property.
    Mr. Mulcahy denies this, though he admitted to posting different signs at an earlier time. Police have not charged him with anything, but an Aspen police officer did have this to say: “I made it very clear to Mulcahy that he was not allowed to return to the Art Museum property or else he would be arrested for trespassing, and Mulcahy told me that he understood and would not go onto the property again.”

    Aspen, a wealthy town popular with celebrities as a vacationing destination, is not really the place where one would expect people to be big fans of the shenanigans of the 99 percent. Occupy Aspen, by the way, sounds like a pretty humble affair. Mr Mulcahy refers to the movement in the Aspen Times as “all 8 of us.”

    Follow Michael H. Miller via RSS.


Trackbacks for this post

  1. Katy Crocker › Miami Art Week, As Trashy As Saatchi’s Tirade Suggests?