Paddy Johnson at Art Agenda: The Mammoth Miami Fair Wrap-Up

by Paddy Johnson on December 7, 2010 Art Agenda

A view from inside The Borg!

I wrote close to 2000 words over the weekend on Art Basel, NADA, Pulse and Seven, now up on Art Agenda. Check it out!

I lost 15 minutes of my life stuck in a traffic jam beside a sewer pipe in Miami. The cab from the new fair Seven to a restaurant in South Beach cost $35 dollars, and when I arrived I was afraid I smelled of shit. One of the less charming aspects of Miami remains: transportation is reliably a bitch.

But Basel was the best it’s been in my five years of attendance, and while NADA slips some, it’s still, by far, the best fair for emerging artists.


Affectionately referred to as the Borg ship amongst some bloggers, Basel’s floor plan is basically a large grid of white cubes inside the Miami Convention Center. This format has the ability to make all art look the same, and this year was no different: a rather stale viewing experience. As always, the Modern and postwar art booths are located at the front of the building, while contemporary settles for the back. Probably not such a bad layout tactic—but I expect this is a design holdover from ten years ago when dead artists brought in a lot more money.

To read the whole piece click here.

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