Like PRIZM’s Mana Building showcase of African Diaspora, Pinta presents Latin American art at a Mana-developed property. And while both fairs feature very strong work, that’s were the comparisons end. At Mana Wynwood, Pinta has the resources to approximate the conditions of traditional art spaces.
PRIZM Art Fair, now in it’s fifth edition, is dedicated to showing the work of Contemporary African Diaspora artists. So, it was my pleasure to make PRIZM‘s opening my first stop this week. My buddy, Tayina who has been volunteering at the fair, raved about the work on view and she’s not wrong – many of PRIZM‘s offerings are diamonds in a rough environment.
The toughest thing about Art Week is trying to make it through the work day knowing I’d rather be at the fairs. Some lucky people take the entire week off in order to burn the candle at both ends and regain the strength to carry on for another day. Fortunately this week has been busy and I’ve had to focus on what I do during the day; that being said arriving to Untitled with less than one hour to close made it impossible to see 1/4 of the fair. I did meet some great people and encountered impressive art works but I will be back over the weekend hopefully with less stress.
It was opening night at Art Miami; the closer we got the more traffic began to crawl and I could tell it was going to be packed. The various groups of lines into the tent were slightly misshapen and unorganized. Upon entering I could see the delay was attributed to an added security measure akin to TSA, replete with concrete Jersey barriers, a metal detector, and wands. The new bay front location appears to allow for larger tents, ample valet parking (with various nearby options), and for those lucky enough to utilize it effectively – the Metro Mover.Continue Reading …
Trying to figure out a solid schedule for Art Week is a challenge, I want to be everywhere at once. Even writing about what I want to see is difficult, I can’t help but rely on my experience from last year. One of my more memorable experiences was at the gorgeously located Untitled, which was just as impressive inside. A spacious and organized layout where you don’t feel claustrophobic or rushed, the art contained therein was cutting edge, well executed, and eye-catching. Located on Ocean Drive and 12 street, Untitled features 137 exhibitors from 26 different countries and is an event not to miss.
There are a couple of things that I do as a practicing artist: I am systematically critical of my own perspective, my goals, and how what I make will ‘be’ in the world; I am leery to the point of skittishness about what ‘art’ means in Western culture and its colonies. My self-monitoring makes me keen to know how others who share my interests – in any field – manifest their perspectives and to what ends. My apprehensions around taste and access and power mean that it is near to impossible for me to have a transcendent moment in any ‘art world’ space, and frankly, I wouldn’t want to as that would mean I’d lost my bearings. And so, every opportunity I get to be with art, I take, even when it’s in a space I absolutely do not trust. Of course, my annual visit to Miami Art Week facilitates the one in the other.
The phrase, ‘what moves at the margins’ has lingered in my mind for the last few days as I’ve thought about what makes NADA Miami different from other Miami Art Week fairs. What Moves at the Margins is the title of a collection of essays by Toni Morrison that gives readers insight into her thinking, and, for serious readers of her work, is essential. For aesthetes – and I mean that in the classical sense – New Art Dealers Alliance (NADA) moves at the margins of contemporary art and its market and informs an understanding of both.
People are afraid to merge on freeways in Los Angeles. This is the first thing I hear when I come back to the city. Blair picks me up from LAX and mutters this under her breath as her car drives up the onramp. She says, “People are afraid to merge on freeways in Los Angeles.” Though that sentence shouldn’t bother me, it stays in my mind for an uncomfortably long time. Nothing else seems to matter. Not the fact that I’m eighteen and it’s December and the ride on the plane had been rough and the couple from Santa Barbara, who were sitting across from me in first class, had gotten pretty drunk. Not the mud that had splattered the legs of my jeans, which felt kind of cold and loose, earlier that day at an airport in New Hampshire. Not the stain on the arm of the wrinkled, damp shirt I wear, a shirt which had looked fresh and clean this morning. Not the tear on the neck of my gray argyle vest, which seems vaguely more eastern than before, especially next to Blair’s clean tight jeans and her pale-blue T-shirt. All of this seems irrelevant next to that one sentence.
This year, my Miami Art Week plan includes a packed calendar beginning the afternoon of Tuesday, December 5, 2017 when I’ll visit Prizm Art Fair and then head to the Art Miami/Context complex at the former Miami Herald Herald site on Biscayne Bay. I’m interested in the general energy of the fairs I’ll visit and want to focus on one outstanding – knock out, life-changing – piece at each fair.
Each December since 2007,1 my buddy Jason and I have met up for Miami Art Week. We’ve learned a lot in the past 10 years about how to ‘do’ art fairs (perimeter first, then the middle). And, although the bazaar atmosphere can be overwhelming, the week is as a chance for us to quickly take the pulse of all things aesthetic and critical. We’ve never really set an agenda. One year he’ll wander over to DesignMiami, another year I’ll make a point of going to as many boutique fairs as possible, and still other years we’ll spend more time chatting over good food than doing anything else. It’s a circus, to be sure, one that it is increasingly popular to ridicule, but it happens here in South Florida and it’s directly related to things that are important to us, so we go.