Art Basel has officially kicked-off in Miami Beach, drawing in swarms of the most creative, eclectic and chicest patrons to its epicenter of paradise to adore and envy great works of art, live performances and more. This year, Art Basel entails more than 250 galleries making up the eight sectors, leaving plenty to see from December 5-8.
Photo Courtesy of Miami Beach Convention Center
As always, the Miami Beach Convention Center is the headquarters of Art Basel, with countless other exhibitions and installations sprinkled around the city. The Convention Center space plays host to the Galleries, Nova, Positions, Edition, Kabinett and Magazines sectors, as well as Conversations and Salon. Public artworks are shown nearby at Collins Park, while Film is presented across two venues, inside the MBCC and in the outdoor setting of Sound Scape Park.
Photo Courtesy of Art Basel
Tuesday night’s launch gave the perfect introduction of things to come with plenty of events and parties clad with lovers of art, savory food, exotic cocktails and fine wines. Notably, there was an inauguration of the new Pérez Art Museum Miami in the old Bicentennial Park downtown, which will act as a peril of art year-round.
Photo Courtesy of Absolut
In Midtown, the Miami Heat’s in-house DJ Irie hosted the opening of MidLoft, a trendy and sophisticated night-time escape resting above the well-known George’s Kitchen. The venue was filled with images from photographer Jaramay Aref and artist D. Mason. Wednesday night the beach was abuzz for the public opening. Sponsor Absolut Vodka kicked off Art Basel 2013 in typical alluring fashion, with an oceanfront art bar installation entitled Night Court, featuring the creations of artist Ry Rocklen.
Located oceanfront near the W Hotel between 21st and 22nd streets, the Absolut art bar featured Rocklen’s work constructed from the parts of old sports trophies. Rocklen has been dubbed the ultimate “picker” as he is seen perusing thrift stores and flea markets for just the right pieces to utilize in his work. The sports-themed venue was filled to the brim with guests and VIPs and although settled in a large space, it somehow had an intimate feel of a boutique locale.
Photo Courtesy of Absolut
The Trophy Modern art bar, which donned a mega-trophy sculpture design standing proudly in the middle of the horseshoe-shaped bar, also served a variety of tasty Absolut cocktails to guests. These specialty cocktails were devised in collaboration with Absolut’s resident mixologist Andres Basile Leon. Seating incorporated barstools with basketballs tucked below the comfy padded seats. Lowrise bleachers, ping pong tables and chess sets, perfect for some playtime throughout the night.
Last winter, 50,000 international visitors attended Art Basel in Miami and this year that number is anticipated to increase.