Sunday, February 2, 2014
During Art Basel week, (December 5-8), graffiti artists from around the globe converge on the Wynwood Arts District to cover buildings. Some buildings are completely covered. Wynwood is Miami's gallery district and every time I have gone the place was hopping. I go to sketch the artists at work.
The artist on the right is named Bruno, or "BR" for short. His wall portrayed a vibrant inter planetary scene. Characters were covered in vibrant Mexican fabric patterns, and sinister green clouds floated overhead in a purple universe. The other artist was likely painting a portrait of a rap or hip hop artist. The face was cut up into a grid and each panel was a different color. Even the van parked in the street was covered in dripping ice cream graffiti lettering. I never did figure out what the lettering spelled.
Terry and a friend went to one of the many Art Fair tents and when my sketch was done, I walked towards them. My college, The School of Visual Arts, was exhibiting student work. Terry introduced me to the SVA Faculty who were supervising the show and I shared one of my sketchbooks with them. There was some really good art in this tent. One memorable wall was covered with paintings on small panels of Obama. Each panel was painted in a different way creating an amazing variety all of the same face.
The Pérez Art Museum just opened in Miami and a group of us went to an exclusive preview of the collection in the evening. It is an impressive modern museum. Hanging from the ceiling of the entries were columns covered in foliage. The ground floor had an exhibit of model boats suspended from the ceiling that I liked. Had there been time to draw, that is what I would have focused on. An entire room on the second floor had hundreds of bicycle wheel rims interconnected by a horizontal metal framework. Guards tried to stop people from spinning the rims, but there were too many rims and the compulsion was too strong. People watching was more fascinating than some of the art. High society was out in force and every fashion was strutting on display. I would like to return sometime when it isn't so crowded.
As we were leaving, we bumped into Patrick and Holly Kahn. Patrick just opened the new Snap Gallery in the renovated Cameo Theater, 1013 E. Colonial Drive Orlando FL. The gallery opened on January 18th and the crowds where overwhelming. It is the first time I've been to an exhibit in Orlando where people had to wait to get in. It seems Patrick has managed to bring some of the Miami excitement and exclusivity back to Orlando.