Art Basel Miami Beach 2016 Highlights – Politically fueled artwork lined the walls from November 30 to December 4 at the Miami Beach iteration of Art Basel, which also holds fairs in Hong Kong and Basel, the Swiss city where it originated.
As visitors made their way through one entrance, a large-scale bright orange lightbox with the words “End White SUPREMACY” scrawled on it with black vinyl text by Sam Durant provoked thought at Blum & Poe. At Anton Kern Gallery’s booth, a painting of a smoke stack emanating green fumes with the directions “PROTEST AGAINST IT” by David Shrigley, told viewers to fight against pollution. Rirkrit Tiravanija collected newspapers the day after Trump’s victory and turned a collage of them into the backdrop for a triptych of three canvases at the Gavin Brown’s Enterprise booth that each read “THE TYRANNY OF COMMON SENSE HAS REACHED ITS FINAL STAGE.”
At Art Basel in Miami Beach’s Public sector, which was in front of the Bass Museum, Glenn Kaino’s “Invisible Man,” reminded fairgoers of the Black Lives Matter struggle through a mirrored silhouette of a person in the “Hands up, don’t shoot” stance.
There were also works that played on the warm, sunny atmosphere of Miami Beach, like Derrick Adams’s Kabinett sector exhibition at Rhona Hoffman, which presented paintings of black people lounging on blow-up floats at the pool. Maurizio Cattelan’s TOILETPAPER X Fondation Beyeler installation kooky set-up of a household covered in prints, plates and more depicting the everything from piles of pills to spaghetti overflowing in the kitchen proved to be one of the more social media-friendly stands at the annual fair.
Brazil’s Galeria Nara Roesler presented a shimmery transparent installation by Julio Le Parc, who also has an exhibition at the Pérez Art Museum Miami. Ugo Rondinone’s neon-colored boulders stacked atop one another in Collins Park acted as a modern-day totem nestled among palm trees that also happened to garner countless Instagram posts.
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