We just came back from a walk-through of Art Wynwood – a spin-off fair from the people who bring you Art Miami/Context and other art fairs during Basel. If you haven’t been to these fairs – located in the Midtown district in Miami between Hipster Wynwood and Ultr-Luxe Design District – you really have to put it on your MUST list. The galleries that show come from all over the world and are top-notch – yet somehow much more accessible than the mothership at Basel.
Art Wynwood attracts galleries from all over as well – Paris, Amsterdam, New York – but also a great showing of leading Miami galleries. During my walk through I focused on the local offerings and was really impressed. There’s something so refreshing about the Miami gallerist’s point of view. While many of the other international galleries and NYC shops are trotting out the retread Warhols the Miami curators are showcasing vibrant works from contemporary, working artists who are nailing it.
Working with a Miami gallery when thinking about artwork for your new home or condo is a win-win. The local connections mean that you’re going to have first dibs on emerging new artists. Developing a relationship with a gallerist or two also means building a partnership around your aesthetic. The Miami galleries have their finger on the pulse of art that is particularly suited to our tropical climate and sensibility. There’s nothing like a pop of vibrant magenta to tie in with the brilliant blues of the sky and ocean and the tropical greens all around us.
Of course we know art is subjective. For a moment, though, suspend the question of investment value, and what artist will rise to the top internationally, and just consider how interesting and rich a world we have right here at our fingertips. After all, life really is about relationships and connections – and art gives us something to connect over time and time again.
Some of our favorites from Art Wynwood.
A piece by Daniele Buetti – also shown by Mali Art – caught our eye. A lightbox, the piece blends visual interest and context with some haunting figures.
Two pieces were shown by the Miami Art Dealer’s Association – a collection of independent dealers sharing space – that really stood out. James Kennedy’s work has a formal, rigorous geometry and beautiful finishes. The paint and ink work by Elizabeth Condon is full of depth and intrigue. The risk that these young curators take on investing in showing these works is substantial – the quality of the work is testament to their taste and training in bringing it to us.
This sizable work (8′ x 8′ or so) by Jesse Drexler and shown by SWGR Gallery was stunning and a little disturbing but the graphic impact couldn’t be denied. Gallery Director Steve Yancar gave us an eloquent description of the artist’s technique working with xeroxed photographs, paint, ink and other materials. This work was created at the SWGR Gallery and commissioned by them and really shows the energy and talent coming from a partnership like this. Impressive.
The Wynwood Walls is, of course, the beating heart of contemporary living art in Miami. Though the rapacious realities of real-estate speculation are already changing the landscape there by hiking rents up outside of the reach of galleries and artists who created the buzz, there’s still a lot going on. The shop within the walls had a great collection of affordable, interesting and diverse prints for sale. For prices in the mid $100′,s original, interesting art is available.
Miami is a unique place – if you choose to live here, build here, and make a home (or a second home) here, give these galleries and gallerists a shot – We know you’ll be pleasantly surprised, excited by their energy and vision, and engaged in the narrative of the artists in their collections.