January 19, 2019

The Miami Mania of Art Basel

“Tens of thousands of artists, gallery owners, art collectors, celebrities, and hangers-on will descend on Miami this week for Art Basel Miami Beach, the North American leg of the storied Swiss art fair.

Now in its 16th year, Art Basel Miami is perhaps better known for the party scene it attracts than for the deals that take place there. The fair is “renowned for its sometimes highly decadent parties,” journalist Georgina Adam writes in her book Big Bucks: The Explosion of the Art Market, “with the combination of the tropical climate, Latin-American lustiness, availability of drugs and luxury hotels that seem to invite excess.”

This year’s iteration of Basel Miami kicks off on Thursday, December 6, and lasts until the 9th — but the festivities aren’t limited to this weekend alone. Dozens of satellite fairs happen in the days surrounding the main event. These fairs don’t just capitalize on Basel’s success; they show just how much the fair has transformed both Miami’s local art scene and the global art market as a whole.”

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